Cover Image: Trail of Destruction

Trail of Destruction

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Member Reviews

It was a good mystery and we get to know some of the towns people during the course of the book.  Ellie is the main character and you develop a fascination with her as her character is  very diversified.  We immediately think of her as a good upstanding citizen but learn otherwise.  Despite this, Ellie is still likeable.  There is a mystery going on in the town and we find that a similar mystery occurred 20 years prior.  Are they connected?  Are they solvable?  The tale is well woven in the book.
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I believe this is the 3rd Tracy Buchanan book I’ve read. “Wall of Silence” being my favorite. This one, “Trail of Destruction” was a relatively good read, but nowhere in the vein of the former. It has the typical domestic, with a recent divorce, a bit of a love interest & the all important “whodunit” with the occurring acts of low-key (at first) violence. I got into it quickly but had trouble staying interested. Still a solid read,
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The perfect neighborhood? Facebook chat groups? Gossip turning into major threatening situations? Yep! This one has it all! Ever had that pesky acquaintance who just grinds your gears??? In the village of Forest Grove there is a never ending barrage of those people with complaints and concerns about one another that begins to get the best of the new group chat moderator and certain family issues begin to take their toll. Read this one if you’re a fan of the latest love thy neighbor type  stories out there!
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Thanks to Netgalley for a copy of this book for an honest review.

Well that was unexpected! Small town pettiness leading to what the...moments. Was better than I thought it was going to be.
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Trail of Destruction is the third book by an author who is new to me, about a fictional English village set in an idyllic forest, but it's not a series as such, and I had no problem reading it as a stand-alone. It's more of a character study than a crime novel, and features a large cast of universally awful middle-class twats. You could either enjoy loving to hate them, or end up feeling slightly grubby, but if you have spent any time in Facebook groups you will recognise the personality types portrayed. 

Ellie has lived in Forest Grove since her teens, and was happy with her life, until her arrogant husband left her for his mistress. An argument in the local Facebook group ends up with her taking over as moderator, but soon afterwards the most vocal members are the target of a series of pranks. Initially they are deemed harmless, but when the attacks start to escalate and threaten lives, Ellie finds links to a malignant presence that plagued the village decades ago. Can Ellie and the handsome local policeman find the culprit before someone gets killed?

Ah Facebook, the indispensable tool of the overprivileged middle-aged, (and l include myself amongst them), which weaponises gossip and creates infernos out of innocent comments. Everyone has an agenda, and anyone can start a controversy. I personally have a particular loathing, clearly shared by the author, for those who use the term snowflake as an insult, but did have some sympathy for some of the complainants. The author accurately conveys the malice and cowardice of her characters - even the heroine is a caricature, well meaning but selfish, and her love interest isn’t much better. 
The mystery of who is behind it all was well done - I did guess who but not why, and the resolution was happy enough - with this many players you can’t have an ending for everyone. I’m not sure how many of them feature in the earlier books, and whether more are planned - I’d be up for reading more from this author and about Forest Grove, even if it’s to see some of them get their just deserts!

Thanks to NetGalley and Amazon UK for the post-publication review copy. I am posting this honest review voluntarily.
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Trail of Destruction by Tracy Buchanan is a mystery set within the small town of Forest Grove, Ellie Mileham is a moderator for her community Facebook group. Recently some of the members have been harassed and taunted within the group by someone posting hurtful statements and trying to cause trouble. The small community residents are beginning to bicker among themselves and terrible pranks are beginning to become more dangerous.
Ellie is soon reminded of the troubles which happened in the woods behind the homes across the street years ago. She wonders if someone is watching them all and what could the motive be for the fears which cloud the neighborhood. Don't walk into the woods!
Thank you to NetGalley, the author, and publisher for the opportunity to read this book.
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Wow! I really enjoyed this book and the way it engages he reader by switching back and forth between first person narrative and multiple people commenting in a Facebook group. It felt very real and down to earth, definitely something that could happen in a small town in real life. I loved all the twists and turns and had a difficult time guessing first who the Facebook vigilantly was, and second who the poisoned pen author/arsonist was! I will definitely recommend to friends and family!
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Love this book so much like the other one it didn’t disappoimt! Keep me entertain all along! Subject very well develop!
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While the blurb of this book looked amazing, and there wasn't necessarily anything wrong with it, after getting halfway through it, nothing captured me. The main character from the get-go wasn't empathetic to me and our introduction fell a little flat. I was unable to relate to her and that kept me unable to keep reading, despite the strong premise that was promised to me.
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Unforgettable and Wonderful Tale............
Trail of destruction by Tracy Buchanan is a wonderful, fast and page -turner story set in Forest Grove. The plot is so gripping that you would not be able to take your eyes off. The characters may not seem perfect which makes the story more interesting. With each page the plot takes a new turn. The book has everything, Romance, Thrill and Suspense. Trail of Destruction is worth adding in your TBR. Also, to add the climax is mind boggling. I would surely give the book 5 stars. Thanks to Netgalley for giving me an opportunity to review the book.
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Facebook is controversial. How do you feel about chat rooms? Small towns using it to gossip about neighbors? People reading each other's comments and taking it personally? When a village surrounded by a beloved forested area becomes embroiled in drama, newcomers to the chat moderation realize there's a connection to similar events from over forty years ago. What is Trail of Destruction by Tracy Buchanan really about? You'll have to read more to decide for yourself.

I enjoyed this novel a lot. In the beginning, I wasn't feeling much suspense or a big story. Some narrative, lots of chat posts. Over 20 names to keep track of, some related in weird ways. But soon, when connections begin to leap from social media to reality, things get intense. A vigilante is seeking justice, but for what reason? Buchanan drew me in with Ellie's drama... and when we learned the identify of the 1st vigilante, it was surprising. But when someone else takes over, and even the original vigilante doesn't know who it is, we have a suspenseful book to dive into!

Overall, this was a good story, but you can't give up on it too soon. There is a lot of groundwork to lay, and by 50% thru, the characters and plot are pretty solid. There are the snowflakes and the hardcore justice warriors. There are rude people, and there are kind souls who shouldn't go online. So much of this could be political, but Buchanan does a lot to make this not about liberal and conservative as much as it is about people's views on privacy and vengeance. Two topics that can really come to a boiling point, as they do when fires begin to take control of the village.

Some of the tone/style was hard to follow because of so many characters, but if you focus on the primary 4 or 5, it's a lot clearer. That said, there were moments where I couldn't stop flipping the pages. I read one book by the author 4+ years ago and liked it but for some reason didn't pick up her latest 2. When this one was released, I gave it a try. Now I'll go back to the others and catch up.
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"Trail of Destruction," by Tracy Buchanan, is a story set in Forest Grove, apparently the third book set in this town, though this book is a stand-alone read. The main character is Ellie, who becomes the moderator for a town based Facebook group. There’s a bit more than just that, of course! We slowly discover that although Forest Grove seems like this little pleasant town, there’s a dark side (or maybe just continual small town gossip!). I found the first part a really good read - it was interesting, fast paced, and enjoyable, with a mystery/thriller element. The second part dragged a little bit for me, though it did pick up toward the end, where I flew through the story. Ms. Buchanan did a good job building suspense, throwing a few red herrings, and eventually unmasking the person who started the fire mentioned in the opening chapter. In an amusing way, this book reminded me why I’m not part of my community web groups - I don’t want to deal with the drama or know the gossip; I like being in the dark, thank you very much! This was a very fast (I finished it in about twelve hours) and enjoyable read. I’d be likely to read another book by this author.
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Trail of Destruction is a fun thriller set in the fairly small village, Forest Grove, where there is no shortage of gossipy villagers that become potential suspects for an escalating spade of vigilante acts aimed at other gossipy, hypocritical, and judgmental members of the town’s local Facebook group.

This has the same tone of claustrophobic gossip and the spiteful, small village setting as The Casual Vacancy and features some of the same features: teenagers AND adults getting up to shenanigans, small-town romance blossoming, villagers gossiping online, decay of morality and a push to go back to the “old way.” (Whatever that means, considering how young of a village Forest Grove technically is.)

Trail of Destruction was rather poignant and had moments of seriousness when considering the effects of what would happen if a vigilante used Facebook to target people, and the idea of fearmongering and violence taking place behind the screen and then manifesting into the real world has never been more topical. There is a lot of bullying and threats that appear in here, showing the repercussions of such hatred and jealousy.

One thing that was woven throughout the novel that I did not like was the amount of sexism. Sexist ideas are used frequently to justify why certain people were bullied and targeted in poison pen letters. Women are often portrayed as dismissive of bad behavior and submissive to their husbands, as well as driven mad over losing control over their husbands and easily blame other women for why he cheated on them. Women are also shown to be manipulative and have idle hands, so they get up to a lot of destructive mischief. To be fair, nearly every man in the novel is shown to be superbly arrogant, manipulative, philandering, authoritative, and vicious. Essentially, almost everyone in the novel are irredeemable and reprehensible. (Except for our designated heroes, of course.)

But it isn’t just sexism that makes the majority of characters reprehensible. Most are simply incredibly arrogant and judgmental, chronically complaining, and something about them feels too real (bickering online and calling anyone who disagrees with them a “snowflake”) and yet they feel half-formed because they are one-dimensional characters that are not particularly dynamic. They are mob of Karens, which is the true reason why I hate most of the characters. Given how the characters are and the mounting paranoia and suspicion among the villagers, there was a missed opportunity for a darker and more realistic tone.

This would make a great beach read or a book to read on the train or a plane, because of how engaging the twists were and guessing game of what might happen next.

Thanks to Lake Union Publishing and Netgalley for an ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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I have been so excited to read this book, another set in Forest Grove, an idyllic village where everyone knows each other and no one’s secrets are safe as gossip is rife. Once again we follow the drama as it unravels in the village and is shared on social media by the gossips
I love the way Tracy sets the scene and gives a great character insight. Her characters are so well written, you feel like you know them personally. Reading this book makes you feel like you’re living amongst the drama. It grabs you from the start and compels you to just read one more chapter, oh and then just another before you can put it down
Another great read and I wasn’t disappointed 
Thanks to Netgalley for the opportunity to read this title
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Another fun book by Tracy Buchanan, starring the characters of Forest Grove! She does a great job of depicting the conflicting views and opinions voiced within community forums. I felt bad for the main character, Ellie, as she repeatedly dealt with harsh comments from friends, family, and neighbors. As much as a small town can be charming, I question whether I’d really enjoy living there with everyone in your business constantly. The characters really come to life convincingly. 

I was surprised by and especially enjoyed the bit of romance thrown in amidst the mysterious pranks of the “Facebook Vigilante”. I made predictions along the way, and I’m thrilled to say Tracy kept me guessing! 

This is the third book involving the Forest Grove community, and I appreciate how Tracy includes some of the same characters and references from her other books. I think it’s very clever and a nice little nod to her other works. I look forward to reading more from her in the future!
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Gossip Girls.

And Guys.

Who doesn’t like a little scintillating neighborhood conversation? Divorce, grousing, and those with too much time on their hands create an amusing combination here.

When Ellie accepts the reins of the Forest Grove Facebook group, she presumes that she’d be overseeing petty tiffs about trash pick up and dog poo. Par for the course - until it wasn’t.

Escalating acts of property damage place the residents on edge. Is it retaliation or is anyone in danger?

Comprising both sly and overt humor, this resided closer to the cosy catagory and was a welcome respite from recent somber books. I had fun with this and recommend it for those desiring a less cumbersome read these fall and winter months. Did I mention that there was also a little G rated romance?

Thank you to Amazon Publishing, Tracy Buchanan, and NetGalley for my reader’s copy set to publish on October 5, 2021.
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Gossipy neighbor drama? YES! Family mystery? Also YES! A sprinkle of romance?Again, YES! This book kept me guessing up until the reveal. Every single chapter had me second-guessing myself. 

And there are MORE books set in Forest Grove?? I will be making some purchases and returning to this little village for more drama.
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I'm sure a lot of mystery lovers will be a fan of this story, but it just wasn't for me. I couldn't connect with any of the characters and the start of the book felt too slow, and it just didn't hold my attention. I hope it's a better fit for other readers.
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Social media is a great time pass but what if it gives rise to vigilantism?
Ellie Mileham, recently divorced, mom of two kids and puzzle/riddle creator lives in the eco-village Forest Grove. She has been living there since the village was opened for its inhabitants. Ages have passed but Forest Grove remains the same gossipy, bitchy place since she was a kid. Poison pen letters were rampant all those years ago which led to the nervous breakdown of her mother.
In current times she is also a moderator of the village’s Facebook group and that's when the games start! Pranks that seem harmless are unleashed upon some of the rude and whiny residents, but they soon twist to more harmful ones and cases of arson are reported in many areas. The same kinds of poison pen letters are now targeted at Ellie. She becomes a person of interest in the arson cases and the villagers keep playing the blame game. Ellie needs to find out who is behind all of it so she can live a drama-free life with her children and also bring peace to her mother. Many in the village think the vigilant is a hero. But if the residents deserve what they get, can it be justified if someone ends up being dangerously hurt or even dead?
Fast paced writing makes the story very engaging. There are two parts to the novel, which brings out a twist in the middle but the ending shocked me even more!
Great cast of side characters, specially the detectives and Ellie’s best friend Vanessa. 
Ellie’s arc transitions in a mind-boggling way!
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Trail of Destruction by Tracy Buchanan is a mystery about Ellie, the town of Forest Grove, and the town's Facebook group.  Ellie somehow ends up the new moderator of the Forest Grove Facebook group, where most of the townspeople go to complain and gossip.  Someone in the group is tired of the complaints, though, and starts pranking anyone who complains.  The pranks get more and more dangerous, and Ellie starts researching the history of Forest Grove.  She uncovers some very sad secrets.  I really enjoyed this book; the setting and the townspeople really came to life.  And the reveal of who was committing the pranks was outstanding.  Thanks to NetGalley for the free digital review copy.  All opinions are my own.
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