Monday, 1 February 2016

Review: The Girls in the Woods by Helen Phifer

Buy links:

(previous books in the series available at) 

Don’t go into the woods. Because you’re in for a big surprise…

In an old album there is a beautiful Victorian photo that captures three young sisters, staring silently at one another. Only the trained eye can see the truth hiding in plain view. One of the sisters is already dead.
Annie Ashworth is currently off duty. With her baby bump growing fast, she is under strict instructions to stay away from police work and look after herself, especially as she has a history of leading danger right to her door. So when her police officer husband, Will, is called to the discovery of a skeleton buried out in the local woods, Annie tries to keep out of the investigation. But as another body is discovered and her own niece suddenly goes missing, staying away just isn’t an option.
As Annie is soon to discover, a picture really does tell a thousand stories. But which one leads to a killer?

I am a huge fan of Phifer's Annie Graham series and eagerly awaited book five. I stormed through it in just a day as it was such an addictive page turner!

Once again, even with the evil Henry Smith dead, Annie finds herself in mortal peril. She shouldn't do as she is currently taking time off from her job in the Lake District's local constabulary as she is heavily pregnant, and detective husband Will doesn't think she could get into any trouble at wrong he is.

Skeletons are found in the woods near to Annie's house which are linked to a cold case of some missing local girls back in the eighties - and it is not long before Annie finds herself embroiled with the killer. Someone with a penchant for photographing dead girls, a 'hobby' he developed after finding an album of 'memento mori' as a child and seeing the macabre fascination. 

Even though this is book five in the Annie Graham series, it would be possible to read as a standalone, but far nicer to know the whole story and read from book one: The Ghost House so the past references will not leave you baffled. 
It is nice to see a return of all the old crew and comforting to know they have Annie's back, despite the danger she seems to put herself, and often them, in!

As much as I have loved Phifer's previous novels this one is definitely my favourite. There are twists and turns in this well formed plot that made me gasp out loud, and I really liked the ending! I do hope to see more from Annie Graham and hope that Phifer hasn't put her to bed just yet...

Find Helen here at:


  1. Enticing review Donna and another series I have yet to start!! xx

    1. Ooh you won't regret it! Until you meet the Shadow Man...but it's well worth it! Xx

  2. I liked the sound of this being a series. If I only had an extra day every week just for reading.

    1. I'm opting for a 'no sleep setting'. What a waste of reading time!