'It's both eerie and thrilling at once, and had me under its spell until the end.' Sophie Mackintosh, author of The Water Cure
They are driving home from the search party when they see her. The trees are coarse and tall in the winter light, standing like men.
Lauren and her father Niall live alone in the Highlands, in a small village surrounded by pine forest. When a...more
In a small community in the haunting Scottish Highlands, the strange disappearance of a mother has cast a shadow over the lives of the residents. Lauren, a 10-year-old girl, lives with her father and tries to find the links that may lead to the resolution of her mother's enigma and the healing of her family's wounds. Strange incidents, insecurity and bullying form a terrible labyrinth for the young girl.
This novel is really ...more
Set in the Highlands of Scotland in a small village surrounded by Pine Forest. Lauren and her father Niall are struggling through life after the disappearance of Lauren’s mother a decade ago. Neighbours whisper and gossip and appear to ...more
Part of what made Pine so ...more
The edgy, offbeat prose really digs deep, it is a disjointed, haunting tale that is at turns terrifying and heart wrenching. Lauren sits at the centre of a maelstrom of adult emotion, her connection to her missing mother tennous and spiritual – meanwhile danger lurks in the forest surrounding her while her father falls apart ...more
The story centres around the lives of an adolescent girl named Lauren and her ...more
This is an atmospheric and suspenseful read. It starts off as a slow burner but the pace picked up around the middle. ...more
I could talk for hours about the Scottish Highlands setting, just this in itself was completley captivating. The snapshot of life, in a small remote village, was perfection. The fragile and fractious neighbour relationships are explored thoroughly, and its evident just how much small communities in remote locations rely heavily on each ...more
The book opens up really atmospheric, and has the potential to be really interesting. And story at its core had a lot of potential.
However the mystery element was really poorly written at the end. The entire actual plot only introduced and solved within 20 pages no lie.
The prose was SO WEAK and incredibly stilted. The whole story felt really dragged out with so much useless detail, just to be rushed and solved in 20 pages.
What was the point in reading this?
Set in a small village in the Scottish Highlands, Francine Toon creates a mysteriously haunting and eerie tale that touches on loss, father daughter relationships, small village life, all with a supernatural edge.
It's set in the present day with references to social media but reads like a ghost story ...more
Talk about creepy! From its atmospheric, rural Northern Scotland ...more
This book drew me in from the start as the author sets the scene beautifully with her vivid descriptions of the small Highland village which has some interesting inhabitants. The beauty of the area is constrasted nicely with the eerie, almost oppressive forest which seems to hold a lot of mystery. I loved the little details the author has included in this book which just helped ...more
In Pine we follow Lauren, a young girl who lives with her Dad in the Scottish Highlands. Her Mum vanished when she was tiny and she is dealing with lots of issues in her life. When a local girl goes missing in the woods, suspicion is rife in the community and a huge search begins to try and find ...more
This is one of those books where the setting is its own character, and the most forbidding one. Set in northern Scotland in a tiny ...more
Set in a small town in the Scottish highlands, 10-year-old Lauren and her father Niall’s life is overshadowed by the enigmatic disappearance of Lauren’s mother and Niall’s partner, Christine, and the trauma that ensued.
The icy climate made for an eerie and haunting atmosphere that was an immensely enthralling and ...more
Lauren was so young when her mother went tries to channel her through her alternative therapy books about spiritual healing through crystals and reading the ...more
From the spare and deliberate use of language, to the use of the present tense to create an atmosphere of immediacy, everything about this book is a wonder.
Told in alternate persepectives , that of almost 11 year old Lauren and her father Niall, this is a folklore and gothic inspired tale of a small Highland village bordered by pine forests. Not only ...more
Laren lives with her Father, not only on the outskirts of the community geographically, but also societally. Seen as different because of her mother's disappearance when she was only tiny, Lauren struggles with bullies at school and the growing awareness that her family set up isn't seen as normal and that there are many stories and rumours ...more
First off, in terms of design its stark white and black cover with stag/forest motif was extremely eye catching. It conveys both a sense of beauty and of unease given the surreal image. Ever since I spotted the cover and read the premise I felt that ‘Pine’ was likely to prove the kind of novel that I would fall in love with. This proved to be ...more
Lauren does seem to have an unknown presence looking out for her, however, tidying her room and protecting her bed with a ring of polished stones.
This is a mix of family drama, dark crime thriller and supernatural.
Driving back one Halloween, they come across a woman stumbling along the roadside who Lauren recognises; they take her back home with them, only to find she's vanished ...more
This book is just unsettlingly chilling. It makes you believe in magic and folklore just a little bit. I was honestly so creeped out so many times with tihs book, especially when characters persistently forgot things that had happened and just seemed to act like this was normal! I wanted to shake Lauren a little bit and demand she push further on ...more
This was quite different to anything that i have read before, so i found it a bit hard to get into for a while, more so the first half of the book i did struggle with a bit and didn't think it was for me, but i am glad i carried on with it because it's a really eerie, atmospheric and interesting story. The descriptions of the surroundings and everything are so vivid, so that creepy and closed in ...more
It was mysterious, suspenseful, and honestly SO eerie sometimes that I couldn't help but feel a little scared.
The supernatural parts really added to the whole atmosphere of the story and I was so curious to find out more about the disappearance of Lauren's mother.
Lauren, by far, was my favourite character. She's such a sweet child and has to go through so much in the book. I just really wanted to give her a hug and protect her
The author does an amazing job of ...more