The Glass Forest by Cynthia Swanson

The Glass Forest

From the New York Times bestselling author of The Bookseller comes a gripping literary suspense novel set in the 1960s about a deeply troubled family and three women who will reveal its dark truths.In the autumn of 1960, Angie Glass is living an idyllic life in her Wisconsin hometown. At twenty-one, she’s married to charming, handsome Paul, and has just given birth to a baby boy. But one phone call changes her life forever.When Paul’s niece, ...

Details The Glass Forest

TitleThe Glass Forest
Release DateFeb 6th, 2018
GenreMystery, Fiction, Historical, Historical Fiction, Thriller, Mystery Thriller, Suspense

Reviews The Glass Forest

  • Sarah Joint
    A beautifully written, exquisitely detailed novel that unravels slowly. There's not a lot of action, it's more of a character study of some of the most interesting people I've read about recently. Sometimes books are written in a way that you can imagine yourself there with the characters, sometimes they're not. I'm happy to say this is the former. I could feel what they were feeling. After reading the blurb, I was nervous about keeping track of ...
  • Zoeytron
    Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review.Henry and Paul Glass are brothers, movie star handsome with their dark eyes and slow easy smiles.  Is there something slightly off about one of them?  Could one or both be acting?  Troubling secrets and falsehoods are bubbling to the fore, doing real damage and eroding trust.  Their respective families are about to be shattered.The slow build works perfectly here in a look at family dynam...
  • Carol
    S.L.O.W. low 3 for me.After a truly frightening start, THE GLASS FOREST slowly introduces the reader to the protagonists that gradually set the stage for disaster....for what's coming.The story alternates narrators chapter by chapter between a naive 21 year old Angie, a young and older Silja, and a clever young teen named Ruby....all with connections to handsome lookalike brothers Henry and Paul.There IS a good storyline here, but (for me) it sta...
  • Theresa Alan
    Wow. This is a very different book than Swanson’s debut novel, The Bookseller, but equally compelling with the same attention to historical accuracy that makes you feel like you’re in the 1940s/1960s.Told from the alternating points of view of three women, the story gets off to a slow start, but once you get into it, you won’t be able to put it down. Stilja’s story begins in 1942 when she meets Henry and has a whirlwind love affair and a ...
  • JanB
    What a great read! I found this novel to be an atmospheric, suspenseful tale with just enough subtlety in the beginning to give the reader a hint that all was not as it appeared to be in the Glass families. The more I read, the more palpable the tension and eeriness. I couldn’t put it down, read into the wee hours of the morning, and finished it in a day. The book opens when Paul Glass receives news that his brother, Henry, has apparently commi...
  • MomIsReading
    I really enjoyed this...a family who is tied together by a web of lies. How much do you really know someone? What separates this from the myriad of thriller/suspense books is the time period. This takes place in 1960 and the atmospheric feel of that era is touchable. Two brothers - Henry and Paul. Paul's new wife Angie and their baby. Henry's wife Silja and their teenage daughter Ruby. Silja's story is laid out in flashbacks from when she meet He...
  • Touchstone Books
    Cynthia Swanson is BACK ladies and gents and IMHO, better than ever. This is a rich, atmospheric suspense novel that sweeps you up in the mysteries of the Glass family and immerses you completely in their world.
  • Jessica Strawser
    Atmospheric and unsettling, THE GLASS FOREST depicts, with razor-sharp edges, the walls we don't see until we find ourselves trapped within them--and the chilling, emotional panorama of the view from the inside looking out.
  • Kristen
    This is a really good, very creepy suspense novel. At first, it just seems like a family drama, then you slowly start to realize that it's really dark and twisted. Highly recommended for fans of good suspense novels. It has a similar tone to author Ruth Ware's thrillers.
  • Mainlinebooker
    A slow burner, character driven novel that pulled me in with distinct voices that resonated throughout the novel. Even figuring out how the novel would end did not detract from the events and timeline of the novel. When the story opens we find teenage Ruby calling her uncle to let him know that her mother is missing and her father dead of an apparent suicide. Her young aunt, a naive young woman married to her Uncle Paul, travel to her side with t...
  • Kelly Long
    I read an advace copy of this book. This was a slow moving book but overall pretty good. I did like the rotating points of view; that worked well for this story.
  • Sonja Yoerg
    I admired so much about Swanson's debut, The Bookseller, but was particularly enthralled with her gift for storytelling. This gift is on full display again in The Glass Forest. It starts off as a character-driven family drama centered on the putative suicide of Henry, around whom the relationships swirl. As we get to know the finely drawn cast, the lights dim, the pace accelerates and the smoldering questions catch fire. I raced through the secon...
  • Claudia
    Angie is a young woman from a small town in Wisconsin, at 21 she married to Paul, a handsome older man. When they receive news about that her brother-in-law Henry was dead, and that their niece was living by herself since her mother, Silja was missing, they decided to travel to Stonekill, New York to be by Ruby’s side. Angie thinks that she could help Ruby’s with her loss, but later discovered that she wasn't an average 17 year old. Angie, Si...
  • Susan Wright
    Has your life not turned out like you thought it would? Me neither and sometimes I feel bad about that until I read a book like "The Glass Forest" and realize I am not alone. An unexplained death set in a time when women had fewer choices, this book will make you see clearly how every choice counts. Cynthia Swanson's writing is masterful and this tale is told with exquisite detail and perfect unravelling. "The Glass Forest" is an excellent book, ...
  • Caryn
    This story felt so unique to me, in the way it was told, in its plot, in its characters. Told from alternating points of view between Angie, a 21-year-old mother; Silja, a woman swept off her feet in a wartime romance; and Ruby, Silja’s teenage daughter. When Angie gets a call from Ruby saying her mother has disappeared and her father is dead, she and her husband immediately fly out to comfort her. As the story moves forward from Angie and Ruby...
  • Jo
    4.5 starsStanding ovation! This book swept me along for the ride and kept me on pins and needles as I wondered how it would resolve itself. I will definitely put Swanson on my list of go to authors.
  • Sarah
    A good way into reading Cynthia Swanson’s The Glass Forest, I asked myself why I was turning each page with a mixture of eagerness and dread. After all, nothing remotely graphic had happened, other than a suicide that was reported early on. There were plenty of hints, though, that something terrible could occur at any moment. Escalating tension in a marriage. Signs of something dark and twisted about the dynamics within the Glass family. A myst...
  • Ashley Rae
    The Glass Forest is a little bit of mystery, little bit of suspense, and a whole lot of awesome. The characters are rich in detail, and the “whodunit” is quite a shocker. I loved every minute of it.The quality of writing in The Glass Forest is superb. It’s easy to feel immersed in the 1950/1960s when you’re reading this book.The plot is so intriguing! Ruby’s dad commits suicide and her mother is missing. It seems like a straightforward ...
  • Jessica
    Won in the First Reads giveaway.Very engaging mystery. Even if I did guess the gist of it, the journey was still good. Some of the writing seemed awkward, especially Angie's first person chapters. Also, "buttock cheek"? I felt like the word "buttock" was used way too often. Some people may be annoyed by Angie at first, but give her time.The book also seemed very timely with the portrayal of the two Glass brothers. One being (view spoiler)[a fanat...
  • Shannon Dyer
    Round up to 4.5 stars. Utterly captivating. Review to come at AAR.
  • Laura
    From start to finish, I enjoyed every word of this book. Often, books with a mystery as the core plot are predictable. The Glass House was never predictable, it kept me guessing from the beginning and I truly couldn’t guess what would be revealed by the end. I think the character development was also on point. At the beginning the female characters are portrayed as weak, smitten, passive. By the end they have grown or revealed their inner stren...
  • Tanya
    oh I just loved this book, more than the bookseller, and I really enjoyed that one. Yes, this story is a slow burn but the foreshadowing offered enough lure for me that I couldn't put it down. as others have noted, the second half moves faster than the first, but I had no problems getting sucked into the story from the first few pages. I can't recommend this book enough.
  • stardustreader
    A slow burn mysterying, The Glass Forest is the perfect book to pick up this year.I thoroughly enjoyed this novel and at the end of the, I was blown away. I couldn't believe the plot twists, elegantly crafted characters, and beautiful prose This started off slow, but as time went on the pieces fell into place. My mind was blown by the end of this book and while I knew it reached the end, I was craving more! 5/5 star!
  • Debbie
    A phone call from her teenage niece she's only met once puts Angie's life in a spiral. The niece, Ruby, frantically reports that her mother, Silja, has gone missing and her father, Henry, is dead from an apparent suicide. Running to tell her beloved husband Paul that his brother is dead and his sister-in-law is missing, Angie only wants to help the family heal. Paul, Angie and their baby son, PJ, all board a plane going from Wisconsin to Stonekil...
  • Renee (
    I really felt the premise of this story was strong and I was intrigued with the initial pages and set up. The story alternates perspectives between Angie, Ruby, and Silja and while I didn't love this it worked ok to propel the story forward. My main critique is this is a very meandering plot and even by 50 % I was wondering if anything was going to happen. It seemed to be mainly a character study and the only character I cared at all for was Silj...
  • Melanie Johnson
    This was a slow-burn creep-fest set in the 1960’s when life was much different for women. Paul and Angie are newly married with a baby when they get a call that Paul’s brother is dead and his sister-in-law is missing. Paul and Angie quickly fly to be with their 17 year old niece to try to figure out what happened to their family. This isn’t fast paced, but it is so good. There are a lot of layers and it was a quick read for me. I think this...
  • Jason McKinney
    2 1/2 stars.Not terrible but pretty predictable and way too much of a slow burn along the way. It takes over half the novel until the gears really start clicking and even then things continue to move pretty slowly. The three female lead characters are also unfortunately not that interesting and thankfully, Swanson is a decent writer because otherwise, this would potentially be an interminable slog. The suspense here should have been tightened up ...
  • Erin Larson
    Suspenseful and engaging but regretfully undeveloped and trite characters.