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The Boy from the Woods

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4.11  ·  Rating details ·  179 ratings  ·  95 reviews

A man with a mysterious past must find a missing teenage girl in this shocking thriller from the #1 New York Times bestselling author of Run Away.

Thirty years ago, Wilde was found as a boy living feral in the woods, with no memory of his past. Now an adult, he still doesn’t know where he comes from, and another child has gone missing.

No one seems to take Naomi Pine’s

...more
Kindle Edition, UK, 384 pages
Expected publication: March 19th 2020 by Cornerstone Digital (first published March 17th 2020)
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  • The Boy from the Woods by Harlan Coben
    The Boy from the Woods
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    Release date: Mar 17, 2020
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    A man with a mysterious past must find a missing teenage girl in this shocking
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    Community Reviews

    Showing 1-30
    Average rating 4.11  · 
    Rating details
     ·  179 ratings  ·  95 reviews


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    Chelsea Humphrey
    *Now available to request via NetGalley!!!

    "Well, well, well, as I live and breathe. Hester Crimstein in my little station."

    Whether you are stumbling across this review in search of a new stand-alone thriller or as a long term fan of the author, you are equal parts welcome here. Friends, The Boy from the Woods is Harlan Coben at his best, and let me tell you why. Readers of Stephen King claim their loyalty as a fan base in part because he has an uncanny way of providing layers to his work. Sure,
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    Paromjit
    Harlan Coben's novel is a fabulous thriller that takes a little while to work out where it is going, there are numerous threads and a particular highlight is the range of characters from the endearing to the boo hiss variety, set in Westville, New Jersey. The eponymous boy from the woods is Wilde, a feral child, approximately aged between 6-8 years old, discovered surviving alone in the woods with no memory of who he is or where he came from. No-one ever claimed him or came forward with ...more
    Debra
    Jan 30, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: first-reads-won
    Wilde was living wild in the woods (get it?) thirty years ago. No one, including him, knew his name, his exact age, where he came from, his parents’ names, were or how long he had been surviving alone in the woods. He has vague memories, foggy nightmares, but even as an adult all he remembers is scavenging to survive and playing with his friend, Adam.

    He's an adult now, but still more comfortable being on his own, living in the woods and keeping even those who love him at arm’s length. Raised in
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    Meredith
    Feb 17, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley
    The Boy From the Woods is an action-packed thriller about two missing teenagers, a dirty politician, and damaging secrets.

    The plot seems simple and focuses a teenage girl who disappears without a trace. She is the school pariah. Then the rich popular boy, who is a bit of douche, disappears as well. This is where things get more complicated. There’s a lot of action and suspense in the attempts to find the missing teenagers. Lies unravel and secrets are revealed. Conspiracy theories, a ransom
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    Monnie
    Feb 09, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    When it comes to timely reading of pre-publication books I get by way of NetGalley, I try to play it straight - really, I do - by reading them in order of next to be released. But sometimes I get one I'm so excited about that it jumps to the head of the line. This is one of those times. And to the half-dozen books that got pushed aside, I promise to get to them soon, but love means never having to say you're sorry. This one was way too good for apologies.

    It's most notable to me for the
    ...more
    Andrew Smith
    Feb 06, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley
    In 1986 a couple of hikers in the Ramapo Mountain State Forest found a boy who, it seems, had be living wild. He was unschooled and had no memory of life before the the forest. Jump forward thirty-four years and the man that was this boy has grown into an intelligent, educated man who has operated as a private investigator. In fact, Wilde, as he’s now known, set up his own company in partnership with his foster-sister some while back. He now lives in portable accommodation in the forest in which ...more
    Pauline
    Feb 07, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley
    Wilde was found living feral in the woods when he was a young boy and has no memory of his past or even his name. He became friends with a boy called David and was then taken into foster care.
    Many years later he is asked by David’s son to look for for a girl in his class that has gone missing.
    This is the first book by this author that I have read and I really enjoyed it, especially all the different characters. I will be looking to read more of his books.
    Thank you to NetGalley and Random House
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    Jamie beauty_andthebook_
    Dec 10, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: arcs
    As with every single prior Harlan Coben novel, I am in love with these characters, this book and I can't believe I have to wait a year for a new book!

    The Boy in the Woods features a connection to one of my favorite Coben recurring characters, the esteemed Hester Crimstein, but this time, Hester is one of the stars of the show (we do get an "articulate" reference as well) - including these easter eggs to past books or characters is one of my favorite things about reading Coben - it's like an
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    Laura Rash
    Dec 07, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Any normal Harlan Coben fan does exactly what I did when I received this early copy-I started reading it as soon as I pulled it out of the mailer! Cue the roller coaster track sound as I start turning pages bc that’s the thrilling ride this book is! Lots of moments that had me squirming in my seat wondering if I should just pace the floor as I read. The story of Wilde, Naomi, Hester and Oren makes for a complicated plot that you are just absorbed into. I love Hester and wonder if anyone else ...more
    Liz Barnsley
    Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    The Boy From The Woods may be my favourite Coben novel yet and that’s saying something because I’m a huge fan. Nobody writes twisty thrillers with brilliant characters quite like this author- for whatever reason I engaged even more with this one, likely down to its two main protagonists Wilde and Hester.

    The story itself is pacy, addictive and very intelligent- something I’ve come to expect when picking one of these up and I have yet to be disappointed. The Boy From The Woods fairly rocks along,
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    Jen
    Feb 17, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    A fun and fast paced thriller with intriguing characters, The Boy From The Woods was a wild ride! There were many different side stories that kept me perplexed and riveted to the pages. The climax got a little muddled but overall, this was a fun read that I couldn’t put down. One of the storylines was left unanswered so I’m hoping that this is the start of a fantastic new series! I enjoyed the characters and the relationships that were forged. The writing is well executed and the author did a ...more
    Gary
    Jan 26, 2020 rated it liked it
    This is a standalone novel by author Harlan Coben.
    I have read many books by this author and loved most of them especially the Myron Bolitar series but recently I have found some of his books hit or miss. This unfortunately was not a hit although I can see there are many positive reviews. There were certainly some high points but for me not the normal high standard I expect from one of my favourite authors.

    Thirty years ago, a child was found in the New Jersey backwoods. Everyone knows him as
    ...more
    Jan
    Feb 15, 2020 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: netgalley, mystery
    It’s been awhile since I’ve read a Coben book-happy that he still knows how to weave a great tale!
    There is something about his writing style that works for me. It's feels smooth, easy-even in those tense or dramatic scenes.

    In typical Coben style, he starts out in one direction, then the next thing you know there are sub plots popping up, all with their own mystery to figure out. I did guess accurately at the outcome of one, the rest did catch me by surprise.

    While some of the situations require
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    Barbara White
    Dec 23, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    I'm a huge Harlan Coben fan, and the world stopped for 24 hours while I inhaled an advanced reader copy of his latest. This fast-paced story is full of twists, turns, layers, and unique characters skillfully woven together. (Although, I'll be honest, I don't think that Harlan Coben could write anything less than brilliant.)

    There are many threads to THE BOY FROM THE WOODS, which opens with a bullied teenager and this strange--current--political moment in which the differences between the extreme
    ...more
    Cassie
    Jan 07, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    30 years ago a boy was found living in the New Jersey woods. This boy, Wilde, has no recollection of how he got there nor for how long.

    Wilde is godfather to Matthew, a teenage boy who also happens to be the grandson of Hester Crimstein. If you have read other Coben books, you will know who she is - and understand why I was so excited when she popped up.
    A girl from Matthew's class at school goes missing and he asks Hester for help in finding her and Hester then enlists the help of Wilde.
    With a
    ...more
    Gary
    Jan 26, 2020 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
    This is a standalone novel by author Harlan Coben.
    I have read many books by this author and loved most of them especially the Myron Bolitar series but recently I have found some of his books hit or miss. This unfortunately was not a hit although I can see there are many positive reviews. There were certainly some high points but for me not the normal high standard I expect from one of my favourite authors.

    Thirty years ago, a child was found in the New Jersey backwoods. Everyone knows him as
    ...more
    Renee (itsbooktalk)
    I hate to say this might be closer to 2.5 stars for me but I love Harlan Coben’s writing so I’m going with 3. Well I’ll definitely be in the minority with this opinion, but I didn’t love this story. I actually felt bored through most of it and that’s hard for me to say because Harlan Coben is one of my very favorite writers and Run Away (last year’s book) was a 5 star read for me. This story centers on Wilde, the boy from the woods who was rescued as a child and is now in his 30s. He’s currently ...more
    RachelW (BamaGal)
    Feb 06, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: arc
    I’ve read and enjoyed Coben’s Myron Bolitar and domestic drama books for years, and I don't really know what to say here. Nothing drew me deeply into the read or particularly kept my interest as is usual with a Coben book. Neither the characters nor the plot were remarkable or memorable. I had to force myself to keep reading, thinking it would get better. It didn’t. Even the usually great last twist at the end was weak.

    I’m not even sure I believe Coben really wrote this lazy half-effort. Truly
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    Cassie
    Jan 06, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: kindle, arc, read-in-2020
    30 years ago a boy was found living in the New Jersey woods. This boy, Wilde, has no recollection of how he got there nor for how long.

    Wilde is godfather to Matthew, a teenage boy who also happens to be the grandson of Hester Crimstein. If you have read other Coben books, you will know who she is - and understand why I was so excited when she popped up.
    A girl from Matthew's class at school goes missing and he asks Hester for help in finding her and Hester then enlists the help of Wilde.
    With a
    ...more
    Sarah
    Jan 17, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    The Boy from the Woods’ is the first Harlan Coben novel that I’ve read. Obviously, I’ve heard plenty about this crime writer – 70 million books sold worldwide - and so was curious to see whether or not I would become a fan or continue to pass him by in the future. It’s the latter.
    Many praise Coben’s plots, his characterisation and the way in which he highlights topical issues. However, whilst he’s a fluent enough writer who can take his readers down blind alleys and weave in a good number of
    ...more
    Natalie
    Jan 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Simply wonderful! I enjoyed this book from start to finish. I am a big Coben fan so this perfect book was a real treat for me. It’s really Coben at his best. Those of us who know his writing will enjoy bringing us up to date on some of his prior characters.

    This book is about Wilde, the young boy who was plucked from a life in the wooded mountains of New Jersey, with no identifiable home or family. Now in his 30s he becomes involved in a case which has strong political overtones, trying to
    ...more
    Kat
    Jan 05, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    My first read by Harlan Coben and I just loved it, such a complex plot line which kept me on my toes throughout and wonderful writing to boot, everything you want from an intelligent and compulsive thriller.
    Many different storylines going on here which are obviously going to connect, Wilde the boy who was found in the woods now an adult who is he ?..... the missing girl Naomi what is going on the there and my favourite character Hester Crimstein what a feisty woman she is and I especially loved
    ...more
    Robin
    Feb 12, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Harlan Coben’s The Boy from the Woods is one of his fresher – and angrier – books in awhile. He’s using lawyer Hester Crimstein as his main character (mostly), and as readers, we get some of the fierce Hester’s backstory, as she listens to her grandson when he tells her he’s worried about the disappearance of a bullied girl in his class.

    There’s also the titular character, the “boy from the woods,” aka Wilde, a man who was discovered as a 6 or 8 year old in the woods, apparently having survived
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    Miss R
    Jan 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Thanks to Random House UK, Cornerstone and NetGalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.

    Harlan Coben's 'The Boy from the Woods' confirms his status as one of the modern-day masters of the suspense novel. Always compelling, never predictable, this latest product of Coben's prodigious imagination is sure to become a smash-hit. So, what is it about? Well, it begins thirty years ago with the discovery of a child living in the woods. This child has no memory and no idea of who he is. Named
    ...more
    Sarah
    Feb 04, 2020 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
    If I had to give Harlan Coben an award, it would be "best books to read on an airplane." They're fast-paced, easy to read, and have enough action that you can follow it even when you're a little distracted by everything going on around you. The Boy from the Woods fits this perfectly. I guess my problem was that I read this book sitting at home, and I didn't have airplane ambiance to distract me from over-analyzing it.
    The Boy from the Woods follows Wilde, a man who was found living alone in the
    ...more
    Marcia
    Feb 19, 2020 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
    Shelves: first-reads
    I won this book on Goodreads. I really enjoyed this thriller. The book uses one the great themes that everyone needs to belong, which for many people surpasses wealth, power, and even love. Appropriately, the boy from the woods is named Wilde. Even he ultimately tries to find any of his family. Two missing teens from the same school in a small town fairly screams that they were kidnapped together or have run off together. Yet, all the evidence says that they rarely interacted. Trust the ...more
    Stacey Wendy  Hammond
    Wow! Before this I was a Harlen Coban virgin, but after reading this I definitely want more! This was absolutely explosive & I couldn't put it down. Given what's been going on with Trump & or very own Prince Andrew of late it seemed quite appropriate. It just goes to show that those in power think they have the right & authority to do whatever they please (and get away with it!) Loved the character of Wilde & his eco friendly home sounded fab. Thankyou to Netgalley for my ARC ...more
    Lindsey Rojem
    Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
    Pages: 371
    On Sale: March 2020
    Genre: Thriller, Mystery, Fiction
    Stars: 4/5

    From the Publisher:

    A man whose past is shrouded in mystery must find a missing teenage girl before her disappearance brings about disastrous consequences for her community… and the world beyond.

    Thirty years ago, Wilde was found as a boy living feral in the woods, with no memory of his past. Now an adult, he still doesn’t know where he comes from, and another child has gone missing.

    No one
    ...more
    Molly Connolly
    5 STARS

    Synopsis: The man known as Wilde is a mystery to everyone, including himself. Nearly 30 years ago, he was found as a young boy living alone in the woods, with no recollection of how he got there or where he came from. Wilde doesn't trust many people, but he does trust Hester Crimstein - his best friend's mother. When Hester's grandson, who happens to be very close with Wilde, asks them to search for a missing classmate of his, the two work together to find answers before it's too late.

    A
    ...more
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    18,567 followers
    With over 60 million books in print worldwide, Harlan Coben’s last seven consecutive novels, MISSING YOU, SIX YEARS, STAY CLOSE, LIVE WIRE, CAUGHT, LONG LOST and HOLD TIGHT all debuted at #1 on the New York Times bestseller list and lists around the world. His books are published in 43 languages around the globe.

    Coben is the winner of the Edgar Award, Shamus Award and Anthony Award – the first
    ...more