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The Twisted Tree

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  1,830 ratings  ·  359 reviews
Part ghost story, part Nordic thriller - this is a twisty, tense and spooky YA debut, perfect for fans of Coraline and Michelle Paver.

Martha can tell things about a person just by touching their clothes, as if their emotions and memories have been absorbed into the material. It started the day she fell from the tree at her grandma's cabin and became blind in one eye.

Kindle Edition, 180 pages
Published September 27th 2018 by Hot Key Books
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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  1,830 ratings  ·  359 reviews

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Umut Reviews
Dec 01, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really creepy, VERY atmospheric book perfect for winter! I felt myself in a remote island in very cold Norway. If you like myhological retellings with all the supernatural elements and interesting characters, this book is for you. Full review coming soon.
Feb 16, 2019 rated it really liked it
‘You will find these voices in your head also.
You will tell yourself how you are a poor victim.
Pay no heed and instead look to your soul, for that is where you originate.
You write the story of you every day with your thoughts, words and deeds.
You create yourself.
You get to decide your story.
No one else.

A very small mythology novel with 180 pages.
The characters were well explained in details and the world building is great (a creepy atmosphere).
Recommended to the readers who prefer
Whispering Stories
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Book Reviewed by Stacey on

Teenager Martha has unanswered questions that no-one wants to talk to her about. She was blinded in one eye after falling out of a tree at her Grandmother’s house in Norway. After the event, and a stay in the hospital, her parents rushed her back home, never to see her Grandmother again.

She also wants to know why ever since she was partially blinded she tell things about people by touching their clothes. Fed up with not getting the answers from
Amanda Jones
Sep 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favourites
This was a book that I was approved for, in exchange for an honest review.

I knew I would love this book when I read the blurb - and OMG it's everything and more!

The story is about a girl called Martha who can tell things about people by touching their clothes. She only has to brush past someone to pick up on their emotions. After an eventful journey to Norway, she finds her beloved grandma, Mormor, is dead, and a weird boy is hiding in her cabin.

Things then start to get spooky ... I won't tell
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
In brief - A very enjoyable YA read. 4.5/5 and happily rounded up.

I feel I should make it clear that I have not been a "YA" for quite a long time. However I have read and reviewed a few YA books over the past few years. The outline of this one appealed to immediately. In part I think this was because of the reference to Neil Gaiman whose books I love generally.

Martha has run away from home in England to visit her Norwegian grandmother. Arriving at her isolated house she discovers that her
Cora Tea Party Princess
5 Words: Secrets, grief, family, mythology, acceptance.

Content warning: Grief, PTSD.

Book Review: The Twisted Tree by Rachel Burge

I had already read the first couple of chapters of this thanks to Readers First, and I was hooked from the start. But when I got further into the story it got very dark, very quickly. And I was blown away.

The Twisted Tree is dark and twisty and chilling and you will definitely need a blanket to hide under to keep yourself warm while you read. The writing is incredibly
Gemma ♕ Books_McCoy
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Judith Eagle
Oct 01, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book from the moment I started to read it. The setting is seriously atmospheric: two teenagers, stranded in a cabin, on the edge of a forest, in the snowy Norwegian country side. The story is steeped in Nordic folklore and is both a ghost story and a love story. The author strikes the perfect balance between hygge and horror and there are some ferociously scary twists and turns. A brilliant read for cold winter nights.
Nov 09, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I bought this as an ebook after being drawn to the cover – and I’m so glad I did. I wasn’t sure what to expect going into the story, but I absolutely loved it! On the surface, it’s a creepy and tense ghost story - I read late into the night as I just couldn't put it down! It’s fairly short but there’s a real sense of depth to the story, and I feel it's the kind of book that holds an important message. It’s about generations of women, the weight of ancestral heritage, sacrifice, grief and fate.

Lindsay Galvin
Aug 17, 2018 rated it it was amazing
The Twisted Tree is a ghost story with a difference and I absolutely raced through it. It's a unique and compelling combination; likeable distinctive teen characters with strong emotional journeys, a remote and atmospheric nordic noir style setting, a sinister plot as labyrinthine as the tree around which it is based, and a strong dose of fascinating norse mythology. Also - the antagonist is truly terrifying!
Sep 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I just checked the page count for this book (304) but it really felt much, much shorter than that. I raced through this book in one sitting and didn't so much read it as inhale it.

It is a strange mixture of mythologies - you have the Three Fates from Greek/Roman myth contrasted with Odin, Hel and the fearsome Draugr from Nordic myth. This led me to some minor mind wanderings whilst reading - having recently watched Thor:Ragnarok I couldn't help but see Cate Blanchett as Hel and Anthony Hopkins
Aug 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is catogorised as a "Teens and Young Adult" book so I'm certainly not part of the intended demographic but nevertheless as someone who enjoys a well written spooky tale I must admit that I found this a most enjoyable read. Combining such diverse themes as romance, disability, Nordic mythology, ghosts, monsters and broken families the story ultimately is about redemption and coming to terms with the past and who you are.

The story begins with Martha, a young adolescent girl who has deceived
I received a free ebook version of this from Netgalley. Thankyou to both the publisher and Netgalley for allowing me to read this. My review is still honest!

I have mixed feelings about this one. It's impressive for a debut novel, and something different, but it does have it's issues. I'm not actually going to provide a synopsis for this one as 1. It's a complex little book to summarise, and 2.I think this works way better with no prior knowledge, but in short, it's a YA
Dec 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing

Visit the settings in the book

I do love a book about Norway and legends so this fitted the bill perfectly. It’s a YA title and I often find so many hidden gems in this category which introduce the reader to legends, mysteries and more. This one was particularly chilling though and even if I’m *slightly* older than the target audience *cough* , it made the hairs on the back of my neck stand up!

The landscape and mythology make this novel. So does the writing and the peppering of Norwegian
I really enjoyed this. The atmosphere that was created was absolutely brilliant and had me on the edge of me seat. The pacing was not too or fast but just right and the suspense created added to the intrigue. The plotline was interesting and went in a direction which I didn't really expect but really enjoyed.

As for the characters- Martha was a well developed character who I couldn't help but like. Stig was an alright character for me. I liked but didn't love him and I'm a bit confused because I
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
This is the first novel by Rachel Burge that I have read and am pleasantly surprised to find she has exceeded my expectations by a mile!
The Twisted Tree is a modern fairytale about an English girl from a Norwegian family who can see things that others can’t, and can read people and their emotions from touching their clothes. She is not an obvious heroine.
She travels to Norway to get advice from her Grandmother and finds things not as she expects.
The book is well written and the plot progresses
Tess James-Mackey
Oct 07, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Flew through this in one evening - totally gripped. I'm a grown woman but found myself having to take breaks and turn the light on when things got really spooky! Loved it's simplicity - even when new ideas and layers were introduced it wasn't done in an overly-complex way that detracts from the plot, which I find a lot of supernatural / fantasy stories do.

Only gripe is that the ending obviously leads on to a sequel, so doesn't tie up the loose ends and felt a little rushed / like it shouldn't
Jane Hall
Sep 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
The Twisted Tree is an impressive YA debut from Rachel Burge. Martha has an unusual gift; by touching a person’s clothes she can tap into their emotions and memories. It began after she was injured falling from the tree in her Grandmother’s garden, and subsequently lost the sight in her left eye. Martha wants to find out more about her unusual and unwanted gift and is sure that her Mother could help her, but she is remaining tight lipped. Determined to find answers, Martha takes off to visit her ...more
Amanda Evans
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I bought this book after seeing the cover on my Facebook feed. I'm a big book cover fanatic and I just love abstract covers. This one is so beautiful and I'm so delighted to be able to say that the story matched it perfectly. This spooky, grim, story is dark and twisted with just the right amount of angst for a YA novel.

We begin by meeting Martha as she travels to visit her grandmother. Martha is blind in one eye after a terrible accident involving the tree at her grandmother's house. When
Oct 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This is a wonderful story that draws you in from the very start, filling your head with curiosity. Rachel Burge's style of writing is very clear and melodious, making it a captivating book that is impossible to put down. You will be devouring every word with fascination.
The start of the story follows Martha, a girl who has recently been in mysterious accident, leaving her blind in one eye. She is determined to go to Skjebne, to visit her grandmother, who she believes has the answer to why the
Leonie Byrne
Sep 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: fantasy
Thank you to Netgalley, Bonnie Zaffre and Rachel Burge for my arc of The Twisted Tree.
Martha feels more than a little out of place since she lost her eyesight in one eye after falling from a tree in her grandmother's garden. Ever since it happened, Martha has been able to read people's thoughts, emotions and memories just by touching their clothes. Determined to find out the truth and not getting any answers from her mother. Martha concocts a story about where she'll be and catches a flight
Yvonne Banham
Oct 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Spooky,chilling, page turner

Loved this book from the first pages. Martha’s character is deftly introduced through her journey to the island, as are her unique skills. The pages ooze atmosphere and foreboding ... shadowy presences, things caught out of the corner of your eye. Not many books I’ve read manage to maintain a high level of suspense throughout, but this does, even throwing in the odd jump scare ( look out for the ball of wool!) The only thing I would change is finding out the full
Chloe Bailey
Sep 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received this arcs which I requested from NetGalley, so thank you!!

This novel is incredibly atmospheric, it’s a perfect book to read on a rainy fall, winter or just grey day. The main character Martha begins the story on her way to see her grandmother who may be able to help with some changes that have happened to her ever since a freak accident left her blind in one eye. This books combines Norse myths, paranormal beings, monsters and romance in a way that just pulls you in and takes you to
Sep 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So I received a free Advanced Reader Copy from NetGalley of this book in exchange for an honest review.

Well what can I say?! This book was so good! Such an eerie creepy atmosphere.

Martha is a very interesting protagonist and the locations in this book were so cool to read about.

I love the magical and supenatural element to the story.

This reminds me of Coraline, which to me is awesome as Coraline is one of my all time favourite books.

Judging by how this books ends it looks like there will be a
London Shah
Sep 05, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Just finished reading this upcoming debut and wow––2019 is going to be fulllll of amazing and exciting stories. Burge skilfully weaves Norse mythology with contemporary and romance and horror. The protagonist is refreshing and very believable <3 Fast-paced and intriguing, what I loved most of all about The Twisted Tree is the writing. It's not only that it's skilful and confident, Burge writes in a way that makes everything seem real and believable––you feel it all. Vivid imagery peppered ...more
Emma Read
Aug 15, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I was lucky enough to read an ARC of The Twisted Tree—A thoroughly creepy and absorbing debut. The Norwegian setting is chilling, and that’s not just the temperature. From the very start the book has an unsettling feel, from Martha’s injury, her flight to find Mormor, to the cabin and beyond to the tree itself. I have goosebumps thinking about it. The author clearly knows her Norse mythology and works this beautifully into the story, weaving a sinister, spooky tale with a truly terrifying ...more
Aug 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Rachel Burge's The Twisted Tree is an atmospheric and thrilling read that drops its heroine into the world of Norse myths. I can't tell you how much I love this book. I was lucky enough to read it in a couple of early incarnations and it ticks all the boxes for me: mythology, quest, spirits, gods, heroine trying to make sense of things, cute/troubled love interest, family dynamics. Plus on top of all that, Rachel Burge's writing simply sings off the page. Can't wait for the next one!
Julia  Yeates
Oct 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A fantastic read and perfect for a stormy night and day in the depths of the Brittany countryside when one's imagination runs as wild as the west wind

And perfect for one who is fascinated by Norse mythologym gods and demons

Would make a great TV film, it has all the ingredients - a damaged heroine, a handsome semi-hero, Nordic witchcraft, demons and the undead, and a nod to Hindu religion, I think, or perhaps dharma is a universal concept?
Trish Leggat
Aug 17, 2018 rated it really liked it
This was a NetGalley book that I was approved for. As with previous books, I was given a digital review copy of this in exchange for a fair and honest review.
So this one hsowed up on the newly added section of NetGalley last week and I was intrigued. The cover looked similar to the Frances Hardinge books that I keep seeing everywhere:

The Twisted Tree combines Nordic Mythology, a contemporary setting and a ghost story together in what is a twisted tale that involves romance, secrets and lies,
Oct 27, 2018 rated it really liked it
I received a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What a wonderfully creepy little book, perfect for this time of year. The Twisted Tree tells the story of Martha, a girl who can feel people’s memories when she touches their clothing, as she returns to Norway after growing concerned for her grandmother’s safety. What follows is a story steeped in Norse mythology, tentative friendships and one incredibly scary monster lurking in the woods.

Martha is a great character. Her ability
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“You write the story of you every day with your thoughts, words and deeds. You create yourself. You get to decide your story. No one else. You.” 8 likes
“No one can tell the story of you, but you. Some people are gifted with a gilded tongue. They will tell you who you are with such conviction that you may actually believe them, but this is a reflection, not the truth, for the story of you is not yet written.”

She leans back. “You will find these voices in your head also. You will tell yourself how you are a poor victim. Pay no heed and instead look to your soul, for that is where you originate. You write the story of you every day with your thoughts, words and deeds. You create yourself. You get to decide your story. No one else. You.”
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