This is a fun read! I saw a blurb that calls this book: Perfect for fans of It by Stephen King, The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor and the TV show Stranger Things. This book does contain some elements of IT and Stranger Things, but not all that much. IF YOU GO DOWN TO THE WOODS is a coming-of-age story about a group of friends growing up in a small-town, and that is where the similarities end. I haven’t read THE CHALK MAN, so I don’t know how similar the two are. With that being said, let’s get to this review.
A group of friends (kind of like the Loser’s Club) call themselves the Outsider’s Club. The teens find a burnt out car in the woods with cash in the front seat and a body in the trunk. The group of teens had to figure out what happened. Then, the Collector comes to town looking for the cash.
There are a few things that I didn’t like about this book. The teens act way older than they are. The ages should have been changed to seventeen or eighteen. One of the club members is nicknamed fat. That just isn’t cool. I know kids are cruel, but that is a terrible thing to call someone.
I cared for some of the characters, but I cared about Bandit the dog more. There is a lot to like about this book, too. The plot is twisty and layered. The author does a great job of managing the plot.
It is a relatively quick read. This is a debut, but you could hardly tell. The writing is solid. The characters are pretty good. The ending is great. The dialogue is solid. Overall, I enjoyed this book. It’s a good way to spend an hour or so.