Review by Chantal

The House in the Pines is a chilling novel that demonstrates the dangers of psychological manipulation. Alternating between the present and the past, this novel introduces us to Maya who was once attracted to an older man, Frank.

Maya meets Frank shortly before she starts her freshmen year at Boston University. Though she only knows him a short while, he sends her life down a different trajectory.

After a handful of dates, Maya comes to the conclusion that Frank is dangerous. She is in the process of breaking up with Frank when her best friend, Aubrey, mysteriously dies. Maya believes Frank has something to do with Aubrey’s death but her theory sounds far-fetched and even delusional.

Seven years later, Maya returns to her hometown to investigate another death that Frank may have caused. In order to learn the truth, Maya must search her own psychologically traumatized soul.

More than just a thriller, Reyes writes about characters that are looking for their true homes. Though she never knew her father, Maya is half-Guatemalan. Part of solving the mystery before her is solving the mystery of who she is.

The House in the Pines is a Reese’s Book Club selection.