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The Memory Wood

by Sam Lloyd

Book Club Recommendations Books with reviews by our Reader Review Panel Crime / Mystery Debut Books of the Month Debuts Family Drama Star Books Thriller and Suspense

LoveReading View on The Memory Wood

Set aside plenty of quality time, as once I started, this was a read in one beautiful, heartrending, fully immersive sitting for me. When Elissa is abducted, her hopes of escape flame into being after Elijah finds her hidden in the heart of Memory Wood. A truly fabulous opening sets the scene, I felt as though I knew Elijah, his very being is stamped on the pages, and yet there is so much that remains unknown. Knowing the abduction was coming set my heart pounding and added to the tension rather than dispersing it. While the seven days of the story slide backwards and forwards in part one, I was completely confident and very much in every moment. In part one chapters are headed by the day, and one of the characters, while in part two you know exactly when you are. Sam Lloyd’s words were so in tune and belonging to each child that I almost didn’t need to know who was heading the chapter. I was on edge and uncertain as to the outcome throughout, as the ending hurtled towards me I gasped and felt utterly consumed. The Memory Wood is one of those novels that I almost wanted to read from behind a cushion, and yet I couldn’t put it down. Chosen as a LoveReading star book, this is a must-read for me.


Liz Robinson

The Memory Wood Synopsis

Elijah has lived in the Memory Wood for as long as he can remember. It's the only home he's ever known.

Elissa has only just arrived. And she'll do everything she can to escape.

When Elijah stumbles across thirteen-year-old Elissa, in the woods where her abductor is hiding her, he refuses to alert the police. Because in his twelve years, Elijah has never had a proper friend. And he doesn't want Elissa to leave.

Not only that, Elijah knows how this can end. After all, Elissa isn't the first girl he's found inside the Memory Wood.

As her abductor's behaviour grows more erratic, Elissa realises that outwitting strange, lonely Elijah is her only hope of survival. Their cat-and-mouse game of deception and betrayal will determine both their fates, and whether either of them will ever leave the Memory Wood . . .

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The Memory Wood Reader Reviews

In addition to our Lovereading expert opinion some of our Reader Review Panel were also lucky enough to read and review this title. You can click here to read the full reviews.

Elissa and Elijah, an unlikely friendship born of terror and loneliness, can it survive? If this is Sam Lloyd's first novel, I can't wait to see what he comes up with next! Full review

christine woolfenden

Wow! Just wow! For a debut thriller, I have to say this is intense. Absolutely loved it, couldn’t put it down. I urge anyone and everyone to read this. Full review

Amanda O’Dwyer

Dark and delicious thriller, The Memory Wood is a great novel from beginning to end, I couldn't put it down! Full review

Glenda Worth

The Memory Wood is dark, foreboding and with more twist and turns than a Helter Skelter. Full review

Angie Rhodes

Great book, loved the storyline. I was hooked, wondering what would happen. The ending will not disappoint you. Full review

Soph Ufton

One thing is for certain, no-one is as they seem. Full review

Bev Taylor

Fantastically written, tensely plotted and perfectly executed, I thoroughly enjoyed reading “The Memory Wood”, it had everything I like from an original thriller and I expect it to be a much sought after bestseller as soon as it’s released. Full review

Miriam Smith

It will be a pleasure to recommend this book to the members of the two Reading Groups that I belong to, plus the reading public. Full review

Marjorie Lacy

Wow!! What an amazing book! Totally gripping with a spine chilling story that reels you in and then unravels. Terrifying real. Full review


Sinister, compelling and unsettling with a white-knuckle ride all the way to the climax. I literally could not put it down. Full review

S. Harper

The Memory Wood, a fabulously scary page-turner! Full review

Amy Wynne

A great debut and had me hooked from the start and guessing up to the very end. Full review

Carol Peace

If you love yourself an addictive, creepy read with some police procedural thrown in this is definitely the book for you. Full review

Manisha Natha

The Memory Wood Press Reviews

Brilliant writing, a terrifying story, and characters so real it feels like you know them. If you enjoy dark, twisty thrillers that stay with you, read this book. - Samantha Downing

I was captivated by The Memory Wood - a beautifully told, dark and chilling tale. - Renee Knight

Remarkable. Stunning prose and compulsive reading. It's undoubtedly the best thriller I've read in a long, long time. - Lesley Kara

What a book! I haven't read anything quite this exciting since Room. You think all the stories have been told, then something like this comes along. Wonderful. - Emma Curtis

I was pulled into The Memory Wood from the very first page-it grabs you by the throat and doesn't let you go. It's an intense, atmospheric, and truly original thriller. Put everything else aside when you enter the Memory Wood, including your expectations... - Shari Lapena

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All versions of this book

ISBN: 9780552176583
Publication date: 10/12/2020
Publisher: Corgi Books an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781787631847
Publication date: 20/02/2020
Publisher: Bantam Press an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd
Format: Hardback

Book Information

ISBN: 9781787631847
Publication date: 20th February 2020
Author: Sam Lloyd
Publisher: Bantam Press an imprint of Transworld Publishers Ltd
Format: Hardback
Pagination: 384 pages
Genres: Book Club Recommendations, Reader Reviewed Books, Crime / Mystery, Debuts of the Month, Debuts, Family Drama, Star Books, Thriller / Suspense,
Collections: Our Favourite Books of 2020,
Categories: Thriller / suspense,

About Sam Lloyd

Sam Lloyd grew up in Hampshire, making up stories and building secret hideaways in his local woods. These days he lives in Surrey with his wife, three young sons and a dog that likes to howl. The Memory Wood is his debut thriller.

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