The Last Woman in the Forest by Diane Les Becquets 

The Last Woman in the Forest by Diane Les Becquets Book Cover

Summary

Marian Engström has found her true calling: working with rescue dogs to help protect endangered wildlife. Her first assignment takes her to northern Alberta, where she falls in love with her mentor, the daring and brilliant Tate. After they’re separated from each other on another assignment, Marian is shattered to learn of Tate’s tragic death. Worse still is the aftermath in which Marian discovers disturbing inconsistencies about Tate’s life, and begins to wonder if the man she loved could have been responsible for the unsolved murders of at least four women.

Hoping to clear Tate’s name, Marian reaches out to a retired forensic profiler who’s haunted by the open cases. But as Marian relives her relationship with Tate and circles ever closer to the truth, evil stalks her every move.

Book Details

The Last Woman in the Forest by Diane Les Becquets
Published March 5th 2019 by Berkley
Fiction / Thrillers / Psychological
Hardcover, 352 pages
Source: ARC from Publisher
My Rating: 3.5 of 5 Stars

 

Review

THE LAST WOMAN IN THE FOREST is an atmospheric and chilling thriller as one woman searches for the answers about the man she fell in love with who may have been a serial killer.

What drew me to this story was the fierce and beautiful landscape setting of Alberta, Canada where the protagonist Marian Engström begins working with rescue dogs to help protect endangered wildlife.

Diane Les Becquets paints a vivid picture of wildlife and what it takes to be a handler all the while slowly unraveling the mystery and the horror of a psychopath serial killer.

When Marian falls in love with her mentor Tate who shares his love and adventuress nature, it seems a perfect match and dream come true—until he doesn’t return from an assignment and finds her life shattered at the news of his tragic death.

Marian then discovers disturbing inconsistencies about Tate’s life which sends her on a quest to reveal the truth—was Tate responsible for the unsolved murders of at least four women.

At the beginning of the story, I felt a bit emotionally disconnected from Marian, but warmed up to her as the story continued. She goes from a vulnerable and innocent young woman to one of strength and resilience full of a sense of adventure and love of nature.

Besides Marian’s perspective, the story also features a retired forensic profiler named Nick Shepard and his case files of each victim giving readers an intimate and scary view into the mind of a serial killer and the perspective of each victim. We learn how the killer gains each one's trust before committing the ultimate act of betrayal-murder.

During these chapters, I found myself completely on edge—knowing what is going to happen in the end but not how left me unsettled and needing answers just like Marian.

In the End

I enjoyed THE LAST WOMAN IN THE FOREST and found myself drawn into the mystery, especially the victim’s chapters, and their intimate perspectives. This is a slow-burn mystery. The wildlife is rendered beautifully and I appreciate the care the author took with this story, especially after learning how her own experience with assault led to this story.