Reviews tagging Death

The Box in the Woods, by Maureen Johnson

46 reviews

cherry__tomatoes's review

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adventurous challenging emotional funny mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.5

Honestly I didn’t know where this book would go, I felt like it would fall flat after the series. I felt like it wouldn’t hold up to the previous books but honeslty  this is probably my second favourite book in the series, first one being the vanishing stair. I felt like we really saw more into who Stevie was, whereas with the first three books we really saw her as this crime obsessed kid. It was nice to see the author dive more into Stevie’s anxiety problems, and as a kid with anxiety I could totally relate. I loved the little small town “Hallmark” vibe of the book. I loved how we learned more about Stevie’s triggers for her anxiety, and I love that she FINALLY got a love interest. I felt like her ending up with David was the perfect ending. Overall, I did feel like the mystery was sort of an afterthought as we really only see a progression in the solving of the case after around page 250.I didn’t mind this however because of how enthralled I was by Stevie’s personal life and her problems. I felt like the ending of the case was very satisfying. ABSOLUTELY LOVE THE PLOT TWIST. And I felt like Stevie finally relaxing and finally admitting her true love to David was an amazing ending. I hope that their will be another book with these amazing characters in it. (Maybe David was hinting at something at the end, I’d love to see Stevie solve some “real life” murder mysteries.) 

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spacexgay's review against another edition

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adventurous dark emotional mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.75


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globalbuecher's review

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thebakerbookworm's review against another edition

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adventurous mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

While the mystery in this book wasn't as good as the one in the original trilogy, I still really enjoyed this return of Stevie and friends. The same quirky friendships, funny and cute banter, and quest for the truth made it an enjoyable read.

The focus is definitely more plot heavy in this one though—it makes for a quick read, but there wasn't really a ton of development for our characters. I wanted David to be present for more of the story. I love the friendships that Stevie has with Nate and Janelle and those got more focus than her relationship with David, I thought. The new characters were interesting, though I don't think any would stick around for a new story (if there are ever more books about Stevie, which I would definitely still read). 

I didn't guess the mystery and I liked how it all came together at the end. The story feels very fast though; I don't know if that was a good thing or not. By the end, I realized that not even a week had gone by. But I supposed such is the way with many mystery books.

This book didn't spoil anything much from the original trilogy, so I don't think you have to read the trilogy before reading this one. But I would recommend reading the trilogy first, as you'll understand the characters a lot better—they get more development and complexity in those books.

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princesspegasus7e13e's review against another edition

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mysterious
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes

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genny's review against another edition

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adventurous dark mysterious fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0

One last mystery with Stevie, which I enjoyed very much! The comedic timing in this book was gold. I've heard this described as a "summer camp slasher" so I expected a lot more gore, but the violence is mostly contained to descriptions of dead bodies. The thrill is still there though, don't worry. 😅 The major twist is pretty out-there, but Johnson put in enough clues along the way that I could think back on them and go "oh, yeah, that makes sense". You can read this without reading the first three books, but there are references sprinkled throughout so you'd be spoiled on certain things.

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staceyk27's review

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mysterious
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No

2.5


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lindseyhall44's review against another edition

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lighthearted fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? No

4.0


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msjk427's review against another edition

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adventurous dark mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? Plot
  • Strong character development? No
  • Loveable characters? No
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? Yes

4.0

I really enjoyed the Truly Devious books, so was excited for this one. It was hard to put down and I basically read it in two huge chunks. Johnson does a good job of creating mystery with some spooky elements, and follows the classic style of the "big reveal" at the end. Based on the ending, I am wondering if we will see some more books potentially set in England. The only thing I don't like about these books is some of what I would call "wokeness." I've seen that more and more in YA and find it disappointing. Although, I can't necessarily fault the authors of inserting these elements into their books as they are at the whim of the hand that feeds them aka their publishers. So no stars removed, just a general observation. And more reason for me to stick with reading historical fiction and leave contemporary out of my arsenal.

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starrygoldeneyes's review against another edition

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adventurous emotional mysterious tense fast-paced
  • Plot- or character-driven? A mix
  • Strong character development? Yes
  • Loveable characters? Yes
  • Diverse cast of characters? Yes
  • Flaws of characters a main focus? It's complicated

5.0


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