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3.75  ·  Rating details ·  6,496 ratings  ·  979 reviews

A haunting novel from the author of The Weight of Blood about a young woman's return to her childhood home--and her encounter with the memories and family secrets it holds


Arrowood is the most ornate and grand of the historical houses that line the Mississippi River in southern Iowa. But the house has a mystery it has never revealed: It's where Ar
Hardcover, 270 pages
Published August 9th 2016 by Spiegel & Grau (first published June 16th 2016)
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Tina Horowitz Thirteenth Tale is one of my favorites - I read Arrowood last night and absolutely loved it.
Charlotte It's quite slow. I happen to enjoy the pace of this book, but it doesn't pick up much. You do continue to recieve more clues, and there is an action s…moreIt's quite slow. I happen to enjoy the pace of this book, but it doesn't pick up much. You do continue to recieve more clues, and there is an action scene towards the end. (less)

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Average rating 3.75  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,496 ratings  ·  979 reviews

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Oct 21, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley, mystery
This is a beautifully written gothic novel set in Keokuk, Iowa. I very much enjoyed reading this book but I loved The Weight of Blood by this author more. Looming large over the novel and the main character, Arden, is the large historical house that is Arrowood, located by the Mississippi river. When Arden was 8, her infant twin sisters, Violet and Tabitha, went missing. Her parents left the house and divorced soon after. Her life has been defined by this event, she has never managed to get it t ...more
Chelsea Humphrey
Oct 07, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
Find all my reviews on my blog:

Date Read: 10/06/16
Pub Date: 08/09/16


A haunting novel from the author of The Weight of Blood about a young woman’s return to her childhood home—and her encounter with the memories and family secrets it holds

Arrowood is the most ornate and grand of the historical houses that line the Mississippi River in southern Iowa. But the house has a mystery it has never revealed: It’s where Arden Arrowood’s younger twin sisters va
Elyse  Walters
Jun 12, 2017 rated it really liked it
Terrific Audiobook!!!! This was my first experience taking in Laura McHugh's writing and first time listening to the voice narrator Sarah Scott. Beautiful fit between author and reader!!!

This story was captivating. I found myself contemplating thoughts about 'everything Arrowood' when I 'wasn't' listening to the audiobook at all.

SOMETIMES -- the FORCED BREAKS -- from connecting with a book --such as what happens with audiobooks --having never listened to an audiobook in one sitting.......THOSE
May 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Arrowood by Laura McHugh is a 2016 Spiegel & Grau publication. I was provided a copy of this book by the publisher and Netgalley in exchange for an honest review.

Arrowood lives up to the hype as a good old fashioned Gothic mystery!

After Arden’s ne’er do well father dies, she is surprised to learn she has inherited her childhood home…Arrowood, located in the town of Keokuk, Iowa. One part of her is excited about inheriting the house, reuniting with her former friends, and getting a fresh start,
Nov 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: public-library
I grew up in an old house, one ancient enough to have transoms, a claw footed tub, groaning water pipes, and a dirt-floor basement redolent of damp earthiness. The home featured in Arrowood is just such a place, and it really brought back memories.

Arden Arrowood's father has died, and she returns to her childhood home after an absence of 17 years. Her homecoming is more than a little sad, for it was here that Arden's toddler twin sisters were taken, never to be found, when Arden was 8 years old
Diane S ☔
Feb 01, 2016 rated it really liked it
3.5 Old houses, mysteries, family secrets and the unreliability of memory. When Arden was eight she was charged with watching her twin sisters, not yet two, as she went around to the side of their house, Arrowood, the twins disappeared, never to be found. Arden has spent her life living with the guilt of this tragedy. After her Father's death she is left the house and so she returns, and so the story begins.

Children are very aware of things happening, but not the meaning behind what they witness
Magdalena aka A Bookaholic Swede
May 03, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-2016
Arden's twin sister disappeared when she was eight years old. The last memory she has is of a golden car driving away with sisters in it. Not long after that the family packed up their belongings and moved away from Keokuk. Now almost 20 years have passed and she is back home in. Her father is dead and she has inherited Arrowood, the old family house. For Arden is it strange to be back home, the town isn't as prosperous as it was before and her old home holds bittersweet memories. But, Ben and L ...more
Jun 24, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
3.5 stars. Yet, another novel about missing girls! In any event, Arrowood was a very decent mystery/psychological thriller. The story is told from the perspective of 20-something Arden, whose toddler twin sisters disappeared when she was 8 years old. Years later, after her father's death and at a point when her academic career is floundering, she returns to her childhood home and sets off on a journey to find out what happened to her sisters. The writing is good and Arden's story was generally i ...more
Apr 28, 2016 rated it really liked it
Another good one from Laura McHugh, author of The Weight of Blood. She keeps the feeling of menace lurking in this story, along with the power of memory. Memory, menace and mystery all combine to keep the reader pushing through the pages, following Arden Arrowood in her adult quest to discover what happened on that long-ago sunny day when her twin sisters, only 20 months old, disappeared. Her family, and her life, were never the same. She has been haunted by her need to know. And now she has ret ...more
Dear old Arrowood: graceful and grandest of all them historical abodes, which offered security, prestige, and good memories to 140 years of Arrowoods on the banks of the Mississippi river in southern Iowa. A stately old home which also provided a safe haven for slaves on the Underground Railroad in years yonder.

Arrowood served silently, and proudly, through many years of prosperity and steadfastly withstood the wave of decline washing over the town of Keokuk when factories closed down and most
Diana • Book of Secrets
Feb 14, 2016 rated it really liked it
Memories can be tricky things, especially those that form when you're a child. Arden Arrowood is sure of what she saw that day in 1994, when her younger twin sisters went missing outside their house in Keokuk, Iowa, never to be seen again. After many years away, Arden has returned to the family home after inheriting it from her grandparents, and it's not long before things happen that make her question her sisters' disappearance.

ARROWOOD is a haunting modern Gothic with an unsettling mystery at
Apr 12, 2016 rated it really liked it
Neither the title nor cover of this book is particularly striking, and that's a pity because this is an excellent suspense novel. It has a lot of elements I love: An old family manor, an unreliable narrator, lots of suspects, and hints of the supernatural. I feared for Arden, the protagonist, as I was reading. Emotionally she's a mess, and has been since her twin sisters disappeared when she was 8 and they were 2. She returns to the family home--crumbling and empty--when she has no other options ...more
Bill Kupersmith
Sep 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 5-stars-in-2016

A superb gothic. It will be hard to write a review & I am probably influenced by the setting because I have been so jealous of people who lived in 'real' places like Cornwall & Norfolk that I am so happy to have enjoyed a story set so close to my home. Simply setting a book in Iowa doesn’t work for me. Both Marilyn Robinson’s Gilead & Heather Gudenkauf’s The Weight of Silence tanked. But the architecture of old Mississippi River towns attracts me & so when I finished hearing the audible version
L.A. Starks
Nov 25, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Highly recommended for all mystery and thriller readers: McHugh hits another one out of the park with a setting more exotic than Botswana (the old mansions of Keokuk, Iowa), and dramatic suspense as the protagonist struggles to find answers to the long-ago disappearance of her younger twin sisters.

The characters are heartfelt and the language is poetic throughout, especially in descriptions of the river.
Sep 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
In yet another example of never judging a book by its cover, Arrowood is one of my top reads of 2016 so far. I wasn't sure what to expect from it, but with terms like "Southern Gothic" and "long long twins" thrown around, I couldn't resist an impulse buy. Blame it on missing Nancy Drew and Sweet Valley of my youth.

Arden Arrowood goes home after the mysterious disappearance of her twin sisters twenty years ago. Upon the death of her father, she has inherited the sprawling historical family estate
Wendy Darling
2.5 stars

This is...fine. But it's too pedestrian to be a literary thriller and it's too slow/not exciting enough to be a fun paperback. I don't mind slow books, but the characters have to be interesting or the writing has to intrigue me, and sadly, this did neither. None of the characters are really remarkable, and Arden in particular felt very removed; she doesn't really engage you in her story, whether it's her past, present, or future.

The mystery also never felt that well sketched-out to me.
Aug 20, 2016 rated it it was ok
Oh dear! When she felt like "an icicle pierced her heart", I knew this was not going to go well for me.

First the good stuff. It really seems like Iowa. For some strange karma, I've happened to read 3 or 4 Iowa placed books in the last month. This one was closest to the state I know quite well.

And it was easy and clear to read. Absolutely. No loose ends or confusing time frames or context issues at all.

That's the good stuff.

The plot was ridiculous. But the worst issue was the emotive mood for the
Apr 24, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: 2016, arc
Received advanced copy via NetGalley.

This was closer to a 2.5 star read for me. I'm not sure what it was exactly but it just lacked something, mystique, maybe. It was clear to me, from the start, where it was going but I gave it the benefit of the doubt, hoping it had outsmarted me but everything fell into place as expected. That in and of itself wouldn't have been so bad, but there were other little things that bothered me.

The best way I can describe the other things was that it kind of felt
Apr 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: arc, 2016-reads, netgalley
I loved this!!!! This was a real page turner for me. I actually read it over two days. July 3-4. (I don't have the time to do that very often). Being off, I picked it up on Sunday around noon and finished it around 7pm on Monday. I did not have any intention of reading it that quickly. I just couldn't put it down. I had to know what happened to the missing twins in the story and Arden; if her ghosts were put to rest. If the mystery was solved.

This story has a great old home (Arrowood) with lots
Jun 29, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgalley
2.75 stars

Received from the publisher and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.

Arden Arrowood inherits her family home and returns to where she was initially raised. Once there she is haunted by the past. Her four year old twin sisters went missing believed to have been abducted by a local man. She is haunted by their disappearance and is interested when approached by a man who likes to investigate cold cases. He is haunted by his own brother's disappearance and approaches her to help she
MaryannC. Book Freak
An engrossing, compelling read that was hard to put down. Arden Arrowood is finally returning home after the tragic abduction of her baby sisters, a tragedy that tore apart her family and left her haunted by what she saw on the day they were taken. When she takes possession of her once grand home she begins to feel that the house and her neighbors seem to hold secrets that relate to the disappearance of her sisters and Arden is determined along with an amateur investigator to find out what happe ...more
Thank you to NetGalley & Random House..... 3.5 stars bumped up, because of history, to 4 stars.

In her second novel, Laura McHugh returns to introduce a new family, the tragic bonds which have tethered it and the unsolved kidnapping in its past.

Arden leaves Colorado, her History thesis stalled, after her father's death reveals that her grandfather has bequeathed her the historic landmark family home in Keokuk, Iowa. Arrowood is a century old behemoth, three stories of house built in the Grand Emp
Sep 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I have spent the entirety of today, as well as half of yesterday, wrapped up in this book. While it moves at a relatively slow pace, and details are carefully dispensed, it was a fast read because I devoured every word. I got lost in the story, the setting, the characters...this is one of those books where I felt like I was part of things.
There were parts where my heart was in my throat, and the creepiness got under my skin. By the end, I was reading with one hand over my mouth and tears runnin
Liza Fireman
Jul 12, 2018 rated it liked it
A nice mystery. An old house, that contains many memories. The most awful one, is Arden's twins sisters that disappeared under her watch when she was 8 and they were not yet two. Arden is feeling guilt, and for years her main question is who killed my sisters.
And now Arden Arrowood's father has died, and she returns to her childhood home. The home where her sisters were, after 17 long years. Of course, she will try to find out about what happened, and we will see interesting things together wit
Jun 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing

Arrowood centers around a young woman, Arden Arrowood: the sole witness to the kidnapping of her two baby sisters. She returns to her home, the titular Arrowood, nearly 20 years later, which is when the past digs itself up. With the help of Josh, a man obsessed with the abandoned cases of missing children, she begins to reevaluate everything she thought she knew about her family, and that sunny day in 1994.

I loved this book. The writing was immaculate; the plot was simi
Aug 05, 2016 rated it really liked it
Arrowood is the story of the disappearance of twin sisters who had disappeared many years ago. Arden their sister returns home after her father’s death many years later and decides she will find out what happened to her sisters all those years ago. I kept reading because I wanted to see if she finds out what happened to her sisters. Good read. I would like to thank the Publisher and Net Galley for the chance to read this ARC.
Ashley Gillan
Jun 13, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mystery-thriller
This book will go own as one of my favorites of all time. Seriously.

It is haunting and dark, but with an ending that reveals just enough to wrap things up nicely. I am surprised at how much I loved it, but it really had all the elements of a great story: a mystery, a dark family past, some twisted characters.

Arden Arrowood returns to her childhood home in hopes of reconnecting with a happier, more stable version of herself. She just inherited her family homestead following the death of her fathe
Craig Ranallo
May 18, 2016 rated it really liked it
Yo, this is how you write a strong mystery. Believable, complex characters making choices that feel organic to themselves and not because the plot demands it. No dawdling with extensive red herrings. Excellent establishment of the setting and atmosphere without dipping into purple prose. I'd say the only drawback (ish) is that you can see part of the solution coming, but there's a nice twist, and then another, that aren't simply for shock value, they actually fit into the story, and that makes t ...more
Nov 26, 2017 rated it really liked it
I have always been fascinated with historical homes where generations of a family have lived, all of the left behind artifacts and secrets that they hold. Arrowood contains of all of these things and the mystery of missing twin sisters, abducted at the age of two. Years later, Arden Arrowood inherits the house where her sisters went missing and decides to return to her hometown to live.

Upon her arrival, she quickly encounters Dick Heaney, the overzealous caretaker, Josh Kyle, researching her sis
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved McHugh’s first novel, ‘The Weight of Blood’ so I was extremely excited to find out she had another novel. I picked this up as soon as I could and let me tell you that it was AMAZING! If you’re looking for a great mystery/thriller-ish book I definitely recommend this.

The story follows Arden in a quest to find out who kidnaped her little two sisters when she was 8 years old. I can’t say anymore without spoiling the book so I’ll leave it at that! Just know it was super interesting seeing a
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Facebook author page: Laura McHugh

Laura McHugh's debut novel, The Weight of Blood, won an International Thriller Writers Award for Best First Novel, a Silver Falchion Award for Best First Novel: Literary Suspense, and the Missouri Author Award for Fiction. It was also nominated for an Alex Award, Barry Award, and GoodReads Choice Award (Best Mystery and Best Debut). Her second novel, Arrowood, was

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