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You'll Thank Me for This

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A pulse-pounding psychological thriller based on the popular Dutch tradition of blindfolding and dropping teens and pre-teens in the middle of a forest — and what happens when it goes horribly wrong.
Twelve-year old Karin is blindfolded and dropped into the Hoge Veluwe National Forest with three other children. With nothing but a few basic supplies and emergency food, the children are tasked with working together to navigate one of the Netherlands' most beautiful and wild locations and return to where their families are anxiously waiting.
Karin quickly finds herself at odds with two of the older teens, and suddenly looks up to see that the other children have vanished. As Karin struggles against the elements to find her way back, she soon realizes that something far more sinister lurks in the woods.
Grace, Karin’s mother and an American married to a Dutch husband, has been nervous about this practice from the start. At first she tells herself the space is good for her daughter, but as the hours begin to tick by and the children fail to arrive at their designated campsite, she becomes certain something has gone horribly wrong. 
As Karin fights for survival, and Grace hastens to find her daughter, the night culminates in the reveal of a deadly secret—and a shocking confrontation—that will push each of them to her edge.

256 pages, Hardcover

First published March 23, 2021

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About the author

Nina Siegal

7 books52 followers
Nina Siegal has been a regular freelance contributor for The New York Times since 2012. Based in Amsterdam, she covers museums, exhibitions, art restoration and attribution issues, art world discoveries and legal cases, profiles of conductors, filmmakers, dancers and other cultural figures, and culture in a socio-political context. An occasional general-news reporter, she has also written about migration issues, emerging political parties and legal cases in the Netherlands.

Siegal began reporting for The Times in 1997 as a stringer for the San Francisco bureau, and worked for The Times' "The City" section in New York from 1998 to 2000, covering Harlem and The Bronx. After that, she spent four years as the cultural news and art market reporter for Bloomberg News in New York.

Siegal was born in New York City, graduated with a BA in English Literature from Cornell University and received her MFA in Fiction from the Iowa Writers' Workshop. In addition to The Times, her freelance writing has appeared in dozens of newspapers and magazines, including the Wall Street Journal, W. Magazine, Art in America, 1stDibs.com, ArtNews, Sotheby's Magazine, The Progressive, and the Holland Herald. She was the launching editor of Time Out Amsterdam, managing editor of Flow Magazine International, and a founding creative editor of See All This, a Dutch art magazine.

Nina has written two novels: The Anatomy Lesson (Nan A. Talese/Knopf Doubleday, 2014) and A Little Trouble with the Facts (HarperCollins, 2008). For her fiction, she has received numerous grants and fellowships, including a Fulbright Fellowship in Creative Writing, two MacDowell Colony fellowships, and the post-graduate Jack Leggett Fellowship from Iowa. Her first novel was top finalist for the James Jones First Novel Fellowship.

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5 stars
36 (6%)
4 stars
147 (27%)
3 stars
220 (41%)
2 stars
101 (19%)
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23 (4%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 97 reviews
Profile Image for Susan's Reviews.
1,039 reviews462 followers
April 17, 2022
Despite the subject matter - abduction and physical abuse - the tone of this novel came across as middle schoolish. This was not my cup of tea and I found myself skimming a fair amount of this one.

Profile Image for Kelli.
844 reviews389 followers
May 9, 2021
The best thing about this book was the cover. Though the premise sounded intriguing, the writing was very simple, making this read like a upper elementary or middle grade book, complete with named chapters and open-ended questions. The chapters from the perspective of the 12 year old were, like, peppered with the word like, which while realistic, was annoying to read. There were many truly odd sentences, such as:

We need to find my jacket-it has the photographs in them.

Grace began to sweat inside her clothes.

Then (a) hand landed on the back of her shoulder and got hold of the neckline of her jacket and pulled it hard.

Then they just stood around, waiting for a while at the clearing in the woods, awkwardly, not saying much, for the second car to arrive.

I'm sorry. What? I found the writing distracting. There were also too many elements to this relatively short story , some of which were not fully explained. I do think this would appeal to young readers, but unfortunately, it didn't work at all for me. 1 star
Profile Image for Heather Gudenkauf.
Author 16 books6,154 followers
October 31, 2021
An adrenaline rush of a novel, I tore through YOU’LL THANK ME FOR THIS by Nina Siegal in one nail-biting sitting. Based on the Dutch coming of age tradition of “dropping” preteens into the wilderness, smart, gutsy, twelve-year-old Karin steps into the forest armed with only a compass and her wits to face a night of unknown dangers and unfathomable evil. When Karin and the other children fail to arrive at base camp, Karin’s increasingly anxious mother, Grace, decides she has to take matters in to her own hands and makes a discovery that shakes her to the core. Gripping and fast-paced, YOU’ll THANK ME FOR THIS is a debut not to be missed.
Profile Image for Kimberly Belle.
Author 18 books3,866 followers
October 27, 2020
Any story set in the Netherlands is an automatic read for me, so when I heard Nina Siegal’s You’ll Thank Me for This was based on the Dutch tradition of dropping kids in the forest to find their own way home—yes, it’s real, and yes, it still happens—I pushed it to the tippy top of my pile. What begins with every parent’s worst nightmare quickly evolves into a twisty, stay-up-too-late stunner, a tense and atmospheric tale that will make you take another look at the people you think you know.
Profile Image for Jordan (Jordy’s Book Club).
358 reviews15.8k followers
April 26, 2021
QUICK TAKE: is YOU'LL THANK ME a perfect book...no. But it is a solid, fast-paced thriller about a girl on an overnight camping trip who gets lost in the woods and must survive all sorts of dark and scary things (wolves, government conspiracies, meth heads, 7th grade a-holes). I liked the alternating POV between the girl's story as she tries to escape the woods, and the story of her mother as she slowly pieces together a bigger mystery while trying to track down her missing kid. Ultimately, I thought the book was missing some of the emotion (and let's be real, who is just dropping their 12-year-olds off blindfolded in what is for sure the SCARIEST f*cking woods of all time)?? Solid thriller if you're looking to burn through something on your #tbr quickly.
Profile Image for Octavia (ReadsWithDogs).
617 reviews102 followers
March 2, 2021
The premise of this book is based on the real-life tradition of "dropping" where the Dutch apparently abandon teens in the woods and leave them to find their own way to a campsite.
That sounded interesting, so I requested it.

However, this book was not 'pulse pounding' and just felt unrealistic to me. (Aka a twelve year old scaring off a pack of wolves) the dropping part felt realistic, but everything else left me rolling my eyes. If I was a younger reader (like preteen to teen) i would probably be impressed and have enjoyed this story, but it's marketed to adults and reads more like juvenile/YA.

The political twist was confusing as well, didn't feel necessary or fully fleshed and plotted out.🤷🏻‍♀️

2.5 stars
Profile Image for Madis Mysteries.
255 reviews21 followers
March 20, 2021
CW: Abuse of parental power, domestic abuse, drug use

Loved the premise of the book!!

I would’ve liked a little more kids and a little more time having them go missing and drop off like flies, that’s not really how this storyline went but I would’ve loved it like that!!!

It was a very easy & fun read and a good one for maybe your 15 year old? I think it’s age appropriate for that although I don’t know you can decide 😂

I liked the random like foreign spy element to this otherwise cute little juvenile story. This book was such a nice break while I’m not feeling well and felt like watching a movie which I enjoyed. The story was quite the stretch and what was actually going on was totally not what I was expecting from this YA book but overall I really enjoyed the book it was tons of fun and exactly the nice break I was looking for!
Profile Image for J.N..
1,317 reviews
May 30, 2021
The premise for this sounded really interesting, so much so that I pushed this one to the top of my list. Unfortunately it didn’t really work for me. I read half of this physically and listened to the other half. Didn’t really much care for either.

The beginning was really slow—so slow that I almost DNFed it and now I kind of wish I had. I also didn’t like the dual POVs and would have just preferred one over another—preferably Karin’s.

This book was also marketed toward adults but felt more like a middle grade/YA. I would have been fine if it had specified what audience this was for, as expecting an adult thriller and reading something that doesn’t feel adult threw me off.

I thought the story itself was fine and there were some tense moments but the twist was boring to me. None of the characters really grew on me and I would have liked to see more of Grace’s relationship with Karin before the dropping. I also had to keep reminding myself that Karin was twelve because she didn’t really feel that age to me.

It was cool to see a thriller set in a country other than America or England and I liked the forest setting. I also thought some of the more tense scenes were well done, but struggled with the lack of tenseness in other parts. There’s also some scenes, such as that with the strange people, that is never really explained that bothers me.

Overall a promising idea but just wasn’t well executed for me.

Profile Image for Linda Strong.
3,882 reviews1,625 followers
March 23, 2021
There is a Dutch scouting tradition known as a “dropping”, in which groups of children, generally pre-teenagers, are deposited in a forest and expected to find their way back to base. It is meant to be challenging, and they often stagger in at 2 or 3 in the morning.

In some variations of the challenge, loosely based on military exercises, adults trail the teams of children, but refuse to guide them, although they may leave cryptic notes as clues. To make it more difficult, adult organizers may even blindfold the children on their way to the dropping, or drive in loop-de-loops to scramble their sense of direction.

This is the story of 12-year-old Karin, blindfolded and dropped into a national forest with three other children. With nothing but a few basic supplies and emergency food, the children are tasked with working together to navigate one of the Netherlands' most beautiful and wild locations and return to where their families are anxiously waiting.

This is the story of what can go horribly wrong during one of these excursions.

The story is well written with outstanding characters. Twist and turns abound in the swirling mist of mystery involving deadly secrets, lies, cover-ups. Riveting from start to finish with an unexpected conclusion.

Many thanks to the author / Mulholland Books / Netgalley for the digital copy of this crime fiction. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.
Profile Image for Golbou Makvandi.
259 reviews15 followers
May 10, 2021
Thank you Netgalley and Mullholland Books for the free e-ARC in exchange for my honest review!

Sadly, this book wasn't for me. The Dutch tradition of dropping kids in a forest and having them find their way back sounds SO interesting and I wish this was executed in a way I liked!

The book is marketed as general fiction for adults, but the writing style is pretty juvenile and this book feels more geared toward 11-13 year olds. Personally, I don't think anyone older than that would enjoy this. I don't think it worked well for this book to be written in the POV of a 12-year-old. It could've been about a group of 15 or 16 year olds and been much more interesting!

Profile Image for Robyn.
1,649 reviews115 followers
April 11, 2021
I love a simple and straightforward story and this is one…..

Set in the Netherlands, 12-year-old Karin is participating in “dropping” which is the Dutch tradition of putting young teens out and requiring them to work together to find their way back to camp. It is a scouting tradition there that seems to have some merit in making kids grow up. This dropping surely was one that empowered the teens!

It wasn’t the most twisty plot or a psychological thriller but it was quick and really good. I know that some readers will want more.. but sometimes a nice simple read that is fast-paced, super interesting, and provides a glimpse into another world…. I thought the setting was super interesting… and the viewpoint of the 12-year-old was dead on… As an adult reading it.. it was sometimes simple, but refreshing to remember that this may be how the adult world is viewed by kids. So Kudos there!

I liked the international thing… The mom being an American living abroad… and the mix with nature appreciation… Sort of a 3 base hit for me!

4 stars

Happy Reading!
Profile Image for Zoe.
1,750 reviews157 followers
March 31, 2021
I enjoyed this domestic thriller that uses the real-life Dutch tradition of “Dropping”, in which preteens are dropped off in a forest and must use their own problem-solving skills to find their way back to the base camp without using any technology as its premise. But even though this novel has a nice amount of intrigue, action and suspense, I will admit it never quite had that little bit of extra tension I would have liked to keep me on the edge of my seat throughout.
Profile Image for Gwendolyn Kensinger.
731 reviews159 followers
April 17, 2021
Loved the concept and this tradition being used as a plot for this thriller, but I did not jive with the writing at all. It's a short book under 250 pages and it does have a survival element to it which I enjoyed. It's also dual POV from a mother and 12 y/o daughter perspective which confused me as to who the target audience for this book would be. I don't think 12 y/o's would enjoy this book.

Anyways the main parts that bothered me about it was the beginning was quite slow and that's odd for a short book. I like to be hooked from the beginning and that just wasn't the case here. I also prefer whodunit's more than whydunit's. Lastly, the why was out of left field for both the characters in the book and as the reader. So that part was pretty lame. And of course there were several quite unbelievable parts involving Karin (the 12 year old) who actually never felt 12 in the first place.
Profile Image for Stormi (StormReads).
1,732 reviews154 followers
May 3, 2021
This sounded like it was going to be really interesting because it was about the Dutch tradition of dropping your preteen or teen kid in the woods and they have to make their way back to camp on their own, but it feel a bit flat.

Grace is an American who is married to a Dutchman and she is not real sure about letting her kid get dropped off in the middle of the woods. Karin's real dad has past away maybe a year ago or so and she is trying to settle in with the new stepdad but she hears things, and how they don't seem to get on. She wants to do the dropping so she convinces her mom to let her do it. 

Karin asked to be dropped in a specific park because it was one that her and her dad use to go to fairly often and she thinks it will be good for her and make her feel close to her dad. She is dropped off with three other kids and once they are sent off on their own with no adults that is where things start to go downhill. First, off the one older boy and girl seem to like each other and don't want the twelve year old's with them so they soon split. Karin is then left with one other girl but it didn't take long before she was gone too and Karin has no idea what happened to her but now she is all alone. 

There is also the POV of the mother and that is when it gets real confusing because I had no clue what any of what she was discovering had to do with dropping her kid off in the woods. I mean I had my suspicions but still it was rather confusing. It seems that Karin and her husband have been having some good fights and he has a place where she is not allowed so she goes snooping and finds pictures of her and her first husband that this guy shouldn't have and it just gets stranger from there and she gets worried about what it is her husband is into and the fact that Karin is off in the woods.

Karin was a pretty resourceful character for a twelve year old. Her father taught her very good at about how to be out in the woods and she could remember markers and things that kind of helped her along the way since they had used that park before. Even when things got scary she kept a level head and used her brain which not all kids her age would do.

Lets just say that it isn't as big of a pulse-pounding thriller as the blurb wants you to think and even if I didn't realize what was going on with the husband at first it was pretty easy to guess what was going to happen in the woods. I think this had a good premise but was just not executed very good. Parts of it was interesting while other parts were kind of boring and confusing.

I think the Dutch tradition is pretty crazy but I guess it's a good learning experience so that was kind of interesting to learn about. The adults are never very far away but even then it goes to show you that things can still go wrong.  I wouldn't say don't read it but I can't recommend but I do know we all have different taste, so you might like it.
Profile Image for Beth.
342 reviews50 followers
March 28, 2021
More like 3.75. Set in a Netherlands national park, this thriller takes place on the weekend 12-year-old Karin participates in her first "dropping." This is a tradition in which a small group of teens or preteens are blindfolded and then dropped off in the woods with a map. The exercise is meant to teach them team work, while they find their way to a base camp, a few miles away. The children are watched from a distance by adult guardians, who ensure their safety.

Karin and her fellow scouts are dropped in a park that Karin knows well. She and her late father, a photojournalist, used to camp there often so he could take wildlife photos. Unfortunately, she is paired with three other kids who aren't interested in playing by the rules. To top that off, her creepy stepfather, Martijn, is one of the chaperones.

As night falls, Karin realizes she has been separated from her classmates. Despite her knowledge of the woods, she becomes lost and knows she's in trouble. Nothing is going right. Pulling on all her inner reserves she attempts to save herself, despite her growing suspicion that the dangers of the forest are the least of her problems.

The general plot was predictable, though there are a few surprises. The characters didn't always act in believable ways, but the suspense and creep factors were well done. I really liked Karin's ability to draw on her knowledge and experience, even when really scared. Maybe not the best thriller you've ever read, but still worth your while.

The unabridged audiobook was read by Tavia Gilbert, who did an excellent job with the characterizations, pronunciations, emotions, and tension.
Profile Image for Bookreporter.com Mystery & Thriller.
1,689 reviews24.6k followers
March 28, 2021
Twelve-year-old Karin is a member of her local Scout troop and has signed up to be part of their annual “dropping” event, a rite of passage for many Dutch children. She and three other kids are blindfolded and dropped off at a location unknown to them inside the Hoge Veluwe National Forest. All they have are a map of the forest, a compass and basic survival tools. They are to work together to find their way to the base camp, where they will be reunited with their troop leaders and other scouts who have completed this challenging and daring activity.

Unfortunately, things do not go according to plan. Karin’s stepfather, Martijn, is one of the adults who is supposed to supervise the children to make sure that no one gets lost or hurt. However, when a series of unexpected events occur, Karin is left alone and must navigate her way through the forest by herself.

The narrative then shifts to Karin’s mother, Grace, an American citizen who is living in the Netherlands with her Dutch husband. She is not comfortable with this ritual but goes along with it because Karin is determined to participate. But when she learns that one of Karin’s shirts has been found in the forest, she panics and heads out to look for her daughter, terrified of what she might find.

Although aimed primarily at adults, Nina Siegal’s YOU’LL THANK ME FOR THIS is a wonderful crossover novel for teens. The chapters alternate between the points of view of Karin and Grace; this constantly shifting storyline, in addition to the fast-paced writing and numerous plot twists and turns, will keep readers engaged and on the edge of their seats as they find out what will happen next.

Reviewed by Christine M. Irvin
Profile Image for Heather.
521 reviews21 followers
September 12, 2021
The Dutch have a right of passage ritual for when children turn 12 years old. They take them, blindfolded, in a car, and drop them in the woods. The kids have to find their way out or to a campsite set up for them with only a compass and a flashlight to guide them. This book takes the ritual through a series of terrifying fictional what if’s. Karin, the main character, sets out as one of four preteens on her “dropping.”

First, two of the kids veer off on their own path so they can do romantic things in the woods. Somehow Karin then loses the other girl.

Darkness is falling, Karin is scared and then she hears strange noises in the trees.

Siegal does terrifying really well. I had to turn on more lights while I was reading this. Karin spirals in and out of danger. To shed even more mystery on the story, her mother finds stunning evidence at home that her husband is not as he seems.

One of the best thrillers I’ve read this year. I highly recommend it to everyone.
Profile Image for RensBookishSpace.
118 reviews27 followers
August 4, 2021
Pretty decent read. I enjoyed learning about the Dutch tradition of dropping.. kinda crazy if you ask me, but cultural differences i guess. Leaving your teen in the forest to find their way to a campsite is the perfect backdrop for something sinister happening and that exactly what happened in this book.
The main character was a 12 y.o and that made some elements feel juvenile and at the same time the book incorporated some serious topics like government conspiracies and abuse that just didnt mesh with the overall feel of the book. All in all it was an OK read and i was curious enough to get to the bottom of the mystery.
Profile Image for Christine Moore.
783 reviews28 followers
April 13, 2021
This book scared me to death! Karin is 12 years old and she is blindfolded and dropped into the forest with other children. The children need to work together to get out of the forest and get back to their waiting families. Of course the children do not get along and things start going wrong from the start. I don't want to ruin anything so read this book for yourself! I received an advanced readers copy and all opinions are my own!
Profile Image for Leah Brown.
63 reviews17 followers
January 24, 2022
This book was...fine...

The chapters alternate between Karin and her mother, Grace. Karin's chapters felt very YA (especially through the first half or so) and I found myself skimming through most of those. Grace's chapters included much more mystery and were more my speed. I did guess the "bad guy" pretty early on, but the "why" was a surprising twist.

I did read it in a day, so there's that. It was a good, quick read!
Profile Image for Patricia Bergman.
432 reviews24 followers
April 25, 2021
I would prefer to give this one 3.5 stars but decided to round off to 4. The beginning was slow although, as the book progressed, a tension began to build to an interesting finale. The story centers around the Dutch tradition of dropping kids into a forest requiring them to use their scouting skills to find their camp. I was surprised to learn that it is still practiced in The Netherlands.
Profile Image for Tiffany Faw.
591 reviews1 follower
May 3, 2021
Obviously in the minority here-didn't think the book was that good. Actually got bored with the story in the middle part.
Profile Image for Pamela.
53 reviews
May 31, 2021
In general, I liked it. The mystery element was ok but weak. It seemed to be all over the place with some of it just not connecting enough. At times, it didn't make much sense.
Profile Image for charlie.
592 reviews8 followers
Shelved as 'dnf'
March 3, 2021
thanks for an arc. but, i mean this book had so much potential, but it wasn’t good. like there was just so much talk about everything and i just found it to be super boring. dnf @ 10%
Profile Image for Monique Reads.
149 reviews31 followers
May 6, 2021
⭐️⭐️ You'll Thank Me for This - Nina Siegal

Thank you @hbgcanada & @netgalley for the gifted copy in exchange of an honest review.

The premise of this book is SO interesting, and had so much promise! Dropping off her young daughter in the woods to "survive" and find her way on her own to scout camp (other campers doing the same thing of course!) Um what? Yes please! Bring on the spooky woods thriller!

Sadly, I was quickly disappointed. Right from the start this book is extremely predictable, leaving very little suspense and a lot to be desired. Overall, it just wasn't for me, however I think a lot of people are going to enjoy this one!
Profile Image for Ashley B.
25 reviews
February 6, 2022
I received this book as a gift from a coworker and after reading the blurb on the books jacket, I was super excited to start it. The description made it seem like this book checked all of my boxes; unique setting, creepy ambiance, suspense and mystery. It even had the added bonus of being a relatively short book, aiding me in getting closer to my goal of reading 50 books this year.

Written in 3rd person, this story was presented by way of switching between the perspectives of the main character Karin and her mother, Grace. Normally, this would not bother me, but this switch occurs at every chapter. It’s the back and forth between Karin, who is in the woods participating in this drop, and Grace who is supposed to be having a leisurely day at home that was not enjoyable because I felt the switch occurred too quickly. The chapters are short so once you get to a point where you are with one character during a chapter and the events start getting interesting, you are immediately met with a cliffhanger and switched to the other. I found myself trying to rush through chapters to get back to the character I was with to find out what was going to happen next. I felt that took away from the overall experience of the book and that could have been fixed if the chapters were more grouped together by perspective and did not alternate as quickly.

This book did have a very unique setting that is based on a popular Dutch tradition of dropping children in the middle of a forest. I was intrigued by this because I had never heard of it and it seemed to be a completely terrifying thing to experience. However, because the story is set during this event and it turns out to be a group activity that is supervised by a recreational club similar to the American Boy/Girl Scouts, for me, it did take a little away from the overall mood. I feel that if Karin and the other children had been older, around 15-17 rather than 12-13, and not supervised, it could have been a much creepier story. However, that is not the case, as the plot heavily relies on the fact that it is a supervised drop.

As for the suspense and mystery boxes on my list, this book did fall short for me. Though the reader does not know exactly how the events are going to play out throughout the book, it becomes blatantly obvious as to who will be responsible for the events to come before the chapters even reach double digits, hardly halfway through the book. I will give the book this, these suspicions are not really confirmed until about 75% of the way through, so it does leave a little bit of mystery for the majority of the book. For me though, it was a dead giveaway and it came far too early in the book, long before Karin experiences any real danger during the drop. Once that mystery was taken away, for me, the suspense was gone too. I felt little fear, if any, for Karin simply because the book was not written in a way that made me fear for her. Sure, she was in a scary situation in the middle of a creepy forest in the nighttime, but the culprit was someone she knew. And though he was in a state of desperation, he was not written to be a truly threatening character. All of this could just be because I’ve had a lot of experience with these types of books and I’m used to intensity and twists throughout so I’d say take this bit with a grain of salt.

I could say so much more about this book, but I’ll leave it with this. Overall, I would say this was a quick, light read that I feel had the potential of being a really terrifying and suspenseful book if only the author had expanded on the content and made a few changes. I’d say this book falls for me around 3.5 stars but since Goodreads doesn’t let me do that, I decided to err on the side of positivity and give it 4 stars because despite everything, it was still an enjoyable read with a setting that was unlike anything I’ve ever read before. I would say this would be a good book for someone who hasn’t had a lot of experience with the thriller genre and is looking to just dip their toes in because it’s an easy one to dive into and doesn’t have any lulls throughout.
This entire review has been hidden because of spoilers.
Profile Image for Alyssa Miller.
355 reviews4 followers
September 19, 2021
The Page Turners Bookclub September Pick

January: Nothing to See Here
February: Waiting for the Night Song
March: Gone to the Woods: Surviving a Lost Childhood
April: The Fountains of Silence
May: Home Safe
June: Inheriting Edith
July: A Good Hard Look
August: The Venice Sketchbook
September: You'll Thank Me for This

I can always appreciate an author who writes about what they know, so I was pleased to discover that Nina Siegal is an American novelist who has made her home in Amsterdam and is raising her Dutch daughter there. It makes me curious to know how many more similarities may lie between the real life of Siegal and the fictional life of Grace Hoogendijk. Clearly Siegal's dedication of the book to her own daughter Sonia "and all the girls who are finding their way," demonstrates the strength and discernment of Karin that she wishes to impart upon her female audience.

Being an all-around nature enthusiast, I love the fact that the story is centered around "the dropping" tradition of Dutch youth. While the revelation of the antagonist isn't much of a surprise, the reader really has no way of piecing together the why behind the conflict until the end of the story, which really kept the pages turning. Overall, I thought it was fairly engaging and not your average thriller due to the unique backstory of Pieter. Thumbs up for this quick read!
Profile Image for Amanda McHugh.
Author 3 books36 followers
February 8, 2021
Mulholland is one of my favorite publishers, and when I read the blurb for You'll Thank Me for This, I knew I had to request. Forest/survival stories give me nightmares, so I was thrilled to be approved and quickly dove in.

Twelve year old Karin is set to embark on her dropping, a Dutch Scout tradition where children are blindfolded and left in the woods to find their way back to base camp. But when things start to go wrong, Karin finds herself separated from her group--but definitely not alone. At the same time, her mother, Grace, discovers her second husband might be keeping something from her--a secret that could put Karin in the line of danger.

I enjoyed this book.

First, the premise is incredibly unnerving and the epitome of tension. Unattended minors lost in the woods equates to endless possibilities for danger. The cultural aspect of the tradition is also interesting, as rarely will you find something like this happen in the US. I loved the exploration of Veluwe and could've read an entire book where the focus was on Karin's survival in the dense, dark woods.

Karin's character reminded me a lot of Hannah, the fictional girl raised in the woods by her father after he goes rogue from a dangerous corporation. Her mannerisms felt age-appropriate, and I think readers will relate to her predicament.

There were a few things that kept me from loving this book. The story was structured well but I had a pretty good handle on where it was going early on. In terms of readability, the prose felt a little stiff at times. Dialogue didn't seem to come naturally and had a layer of formality that didn't match the flow of every day conversation. I understand this could be a translational thing, as some of the Norwegian and Swedish thrillers I read have that same lilt, but in this case, I found the cadence to be distracting and thought the conversations could've been a little more relaxed. I'm also not sure I loved Karin's voice. At times, the diction (excessive likes or creepys or ums) read as an adult trying to write a child rather than an actual twelve year old, but since her maturity rang true, I don't think this will be a major issue for most readers.

Overall, You'll Thank Me for This is a taut, balanced suspense with an interesting twist to the lost-in-the-woods story line. I'd recommend for fans of international suspense, anyone interested in family dramas, or layered survival stories.

Big thanks to Mulholland and NetGalley for providing an eARC in exchange for honest review consideration.
Profile Image for Paul Sutter.
623 reviews5 followers
April 18, 2021
YOU’LL THANK ME FOR THIS is an intense psychological thriller. It is not a long book but manages to work well, thanks to the concise action within. Nina Siegal the author, has created a most credible scenario based on the Dutch tradition known as “dropping.” In this children are blindfolded and taken to woods where they have little other than a map and compass and must find their way back to a certain meeting spot. It is very popular as supposedly a form of character building.
In the book a group of near teenage children are doing just that, and it is something exciting, but the results are far from what was ever anticipated. One of the children is Karin who is twelve. She has come to terms with his father Pieter’s death a couple of years ago in Syria. He was a photojournalist killed by a sniper. She now has a new stepfather Martijn, who is violent at times toward her mother Grace.
Martijn is one of the adults who has come to supervise the event. Things definitely begin badly when Karin runs into a group of people who are part of a meth lab in the woods. She is taken prisoner and barely escapes when the group is found out. Alone and isolated from her friends, she suddenly runs into Martijn, who begins asking a lot of questions about her father, because both Karin and Pieter spent a lot of time in those woods. It seems he is looking for a series of photographs that Pieter might have hidden in the woods. Karin knows nothing about them and goes along with Matijn as he becomes more violent.
There are alternating chapters with Karin alone and afraid, and her mother who becomes aware of something possibly bad happening to her daughter, after a stranger finds a t-shirt belonging to her. It is tense drama as Karin tries to convince police her daughter is danger. Martijn becomes more desperate by the second, and Karin realizes he may have harmed some of the other children.
It accelerates at the end of the book, with Martijn turning more unpredictable and dangerous, and Karin and a friend trying to escape with their lives. You will thank me for recommending, YOU’LL THANK ME FOR THIS, a book not to be missed.
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3,298 reviews
March 23, 2021
You'll Thank Me for This by Nina Siegal is a tense mystery with stunning twists and cunning turns.

Following the Dutch tradition known as dropping, twelve-year-old Karin and three of her fellow scouts are left in the Hoge Veluwe National Forest to find their way to the campsite. This adventure is usually safe with adults following at a safe distance behind the pre-teens. Armed with a map and compass, the four children are supposed to work together on their venture. Instead, two of the group, Dirk and Margot, pair up and leave Karin behind with Lotte. After Karin reflects back on her last time in Veluwe with her father Pieter before he passed away, she discovers that Lotte is nowhere in sight. Scared but confident, Karin sets off to find her way to the scout campsite.

Meanwhile, her mother Grace returns home to enjoy an evening by herself since her second husband Martijn is one of the parents with Karin and her group.  She also takes the opportunity to find out what keeps Martijn so busy in his “man cave”. Grace’s instinct that she might have made a mistake marrying her current husband appears to be proven true when she uncovers stunning information. Martijun was Pieter’s accountant but why would he have copies of her photojournalist former husband’s photos? And why are there pictures of  them that appear to be taken without her and Pieter's knowledge? Grace is trying to understand this startling turn of events when a phone call about Karin sends her on a panicked drive to the national forest.

You'll Thank Me for This is an exciting mystery that is quite engrossing. Karin is a resourceful, intelligent young woman with an extensive knowledge of the Hoge Veluwe National Forest. Grace’s growing uneasiness with Martijn prompts her to do the unthinkable as she searches for answers about him. The shocking information she unearths finally encourages her to act. The storyline is gripping and moves at a brisk pace.  Nina Siegal brings this suspenseful novel to an action-packed conclusion.  I highly recommend this thrilling novel to fans of the genre.
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