cover image What She Found in the Woods

What She Found in the Woods

Josephine Angelini. Sourcebooks Fire, $10.99 paper (400p) ISBN 978-1-7282-1627-0

Angelini’s (Trial by Fire) sometimes-gruesome mystery turned thriller teems with heart-pounding action and suspense. Wealthy New Yorker Magdalena, 18, is visiting her Pacific Northwest grandparents for the summer following a murder investigation at her private high school that led to a nervous breakdown and a stint in a mental health facility. Still heavily medicated, Magda is eager for a fresh start after her devastating lies ostracized her from parents and friends, and she slowly reunites with old summer acquaintances, including charming and manipulative Rob. When she meets Bo, who is living illegally with his family in the National Forest behind her grandparents’ house, she falls for him. But as remnants of bodies start appearing in the woods and rumors circulate about a rogue scientist feeding drugs into the community, Magda investigates, risking those she loves. Though uneven character development is capped off with a too-tidy ending, Angelini intersperses Magda’s first-person voice with flashbacks of her past to create a riveting portrait of an unreliable and cunning narrator. Includes trigger warnings for mentions of abuse, racism, and self-harm. Ages 14–up. Agent: Annette Dal Jensen, Macmillan Children’s Books UK. (Dec.)