This Might Hurt

Photo of This Might Hurt by Stephanie Wrobel

This Might Hurt by Stephanie Wrobel

Publisher: Berkley
Publication Date: February 22, 2022
Genres: Mystery/Thriller

Book Review

Natalie Collins is a workaholic living in Boston, haunted by the death of her mother. Her sister, Kit, was in a deep depression until she discovered Wisewood, a mysterious retreat off the coast of Maine. It has been six months since Natalie last heard from Kit. When she receives a mysterious email from Wisewood threatening to reveal a deep secret she has been keeping from Kit, Natalie leaves for Maine to tell her herself. But when she gets to Wisewood, she finds more than she bargained for.

Told in dual timelines, This Might Hurt follows three unique voices. Two voices are Natalie and Kit in the present. The other is a young girl with an abusive father, who is constantly challenged to take on increasingly dangerous stunts as she grows up. The two timelines seamlessly blend until the story all comes together.

This Might Hurt is a classic thriller about cults. It’s twisty and I was unsure who to trust, including the narrator. It’s incredibly atmospheric, with a beautiful and creepy setting on an island in Maine. It quickly draws you into the Wisewood cult. I was terrified from the first page. As I learned more about Kit and Natalie, and the enigmatic leader of Wisewood, I found myself completely hooked and wondering where the story was going to lead.

If you like stories about cults, this one is for you!

Thank you to Berkley and Netgalley for the review copy! All opinions are my own.


Synopsis from Goodreads

Welcome to Wisewood. We’ll keep your secrets if you keep ours.

Natalie Collins hasn’t heard from her sister in more than half a year.

The last time they spoke, Kit was slogging from mundane workdays to obligatory happy hours to crying in the shower about their dead mother. She told Natalie she was sure there was something more out there.

And then she found Wisewood.

On a private island off the coast of Maine, Wisewood’s guests commit to six-month stays. During this time, they’re prohibited from contact with the rest of the world–no Internet, no phones, no exceptions. But the rules are for a good reason: to keep guests focused on achieving true fearlessness so they can become their Maximized Selves. Natalie thinks it’s a bad idea, but Kit has had enough of her sister’s cynicism and voluntarily disappears off the grid.

Six months later Natalie receives a menacing e-mail from a Wisewood account threatening to reveal the secret she’s been keeping from Kit. Panicked, Natalie hurries north to come clean to her sister and bring her home. But she’s about to learn that Wisewood won’t let either of them go without a fight.


About the Author

Headshot of author, Stephanie Wrobel

Stephanie Wrobel is the international bestselling author of Darling Rose Gold. She grew up in Chicago but has been living in the UK for the past three years with her husband and dog, Moose Barkwinkle. She has an MFA from Emerson College and has had short fiction published in Bellevue Literary Review. Before turning to fiction, she worked as a creative copywriter at various advertising agencies.


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