The Farm

The Farm

by Tom Rob Smith


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Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781455551064
Publisher: Grand Central Publishing
Publication date: 02/24/2015
Edition description: Reprint
Pages: 400
Sales rank: 221,174
Product dimensions: 5.20(w) x 7.90(h) x 1.20(d)

About the Author

International #1 bestselling author Tom Rob Smith graduated from Cambridge University in 2001 and lives in London. His novels in the Child 44 trilogy were New York Times bestsellers and international publishing sensations. Among its many honors, Child 44 won the ITW 2009 Thriller Award for Best First Novel, The Strand Magazine 2008 Critics Award for Best First Novel, the CWA Ian Fleming Steel Dagger Award, and was longlisted for the Man Booker Prize.


London, England

Date of Birth:

February 19, 1979

Place of Birth:

London, England


St. John's College, Cambridge, 2001

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The Farm 3.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 32 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I received this book at Book Expo America in New York City and author Tom Rob Smith was kind enough to sign it personally for me. The autograph just makes it extra special because inside I discovered a tale told by a skilled author in a very thrilling way.  Daniel gets a phone call from his father saying that his mother had a psychotic breakdown and is in a mental hospital. He urges his son to drop everything and come immediately to Sweden. But Daniel is surprised when his mother calls next and says she is coming to him and not to believe anything his father has told him, and most especially not to mention her arrival. These two desperate phone calls take Daniel on a roller coaster ride of events which leaves him wondering which one of his parents he should believe.  This is a remarkable read filled with intrigue. Page after page, I thoroughly enjoyed it. Well done, Tom. I can't wait to read more from you.
Andrew_of_Dunedin More than 1 year ago
Author Tom Rob Smith has moved away from the recurring character Leo Demidov and 1950s Russia setting of his first 3 novels, setting this standalone novel in London and rural Sweden. He has also moved away from the action/suspense scenes that were interspersed throughout his earlier work. Instead, author Smith provides us with a psychological drama involving a Swedish expatriate’s return the country where she spent her first 16 years. She returns to London in an attempt to convince her son to assist her against the local power base that is attempting to gaslight her – or, is it that they are trying to help a woman recognize and receive needed help as she begins an escalating mental break from reality? I found this novel frustrating. Smith, through his character Tilda, took a deliberate slow-paced explanation of the facts, at least as she saw and interpreted them. For my tastes, the pace was much too slow; basically, the first 6 of the 8 CDs in the audio version consisted of this narrative. I considered actually putting the CDs aside and moving on to something else, and do that to a book less than once a year! However, once son Daniel makes the decision to journey to Sweden and attempt to determine for himself what happened, the book turns 180 degrees. All of the background provided in the first ¾ of the book is needed to understand, interpret, and follow the plot twists – for me, most unexpected – in the last quarter of the novel. In my opinion, the last 25% of the book was incredible, and it needed the first 75% to serve as a base. I must give props to the narrators of the audio version of this book. James Langton provides his talents to everything and everyone except for the mother, who is voiced by Suzanne Toren. The decision to break out this important character and provide a gender-correct separate voice for her was winning decision by the director, producer, or whoever made it. RATING: 4 stars. This is a tough call. I’d LIKE to give the author 5 stars, as this book left what I believe will be a lasting impression on me. However, I cannot award that honor to a book that I also almost quit reading halfway through. Therefore, I believe that 4 stars is appropriate. Postscript – I was surprised to learn that the book, while fiction, is grounded in real life autobiography, as the author had to deal with a similar situation between his own parents in 2009.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This is by far one of the best books I have read in a long time! I brought this along with me on a week trip and couldn't put it down, it was so good. The story was so intriguing and I read it in 2 days. I gave it to my neighbor and she also loved it and we are recommending it to our book club! Excellent book!
Twink More than 1 year ago
Tom Rob Smith is the award winning author of the Child 44 trilogy, but an author I hadn't read until now. His newest release is The Farm. Daniel's parents,Tilde and Chris, for personal and financial reasons, have decided to move from England to Sweden - Tilde's birth country. They buy a small farm in an isolated community and look forward to a bucolic retirement.Daniel keeps meaning to visit, but for his own reasons, keeps putting it off, believing his parents are happily pursuing their dream. But when his father calls saying his Mum isn't well and has in fact has been hospitalized, he is shaken. Then his Mum calls, saying she has fled Sweden - and Chris - and is on her way to see him in England. She is cryptic, saying she will only reveal what has been going on in when she gets there. But, he must believe her.....his father is dangerous and her life is in danger....If he doesn't believe her, he is no longer her son. What a great premise! Smith slowly lets Tilde tell her carefully documented story, complete with her proof. The reader is inexorably caught up in Tilde's slowly built case. But Daniel is torn - this is not the father he knows. Could his mother be mistaken? The reader is never sure of what is the truth - Tilde's 'evidence' seems quite plausible, but her manic paranoia makes her an unreliable narrator. I really enjoy this style of book - not knowing who is telling the truth, trying to find the thread of what has truly happened in the narrative. I thought Smith did a fabulous job with this. It was only after I finished the book and was reading more about Tom Rob Smith, that I discovered that the inspiration for The Farm was his from his own life. (Spoiler if you click through). In fact, this book is a mirror of that situation - underlining why I thought the writing was so compelling. While Smith's personal situation was resolved much quicker, the fictional tale had me wondering until the final pages what was real and what would happen. I really enjoyed The Farm.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've never read this author previously and did not know what to expect. Halfway through, I still did not know what to expect. I stayed up late (or early, actually) because I just had to know. I had to know the truth! Absolutely wonderful book! A wonderful find!
BasingstoneBook More than 1 year ago
The synopsis of this book excited me but in the end I was a little disappointed and as a result only rated it at three stars, instead of four. Had the author provided more hooks a third of the way through, I would not have hesitated to award four. In the end I had to work hard to stay the course to receive the reward at the end. The style is mostly narration which in itself was a little tedious however the storyline was excellent. Daniel's parents retired to his mothers homeland Sweden, buying a small farm in an isolated location in the rural south. The idea of setting up a guest house to generate income never got off the ground, as Daniel found out following Tilda's call announcing her arrival at Heathrow. With mixed messages from both his parents Daniel has to unravel the truth of his mothers illness.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Tilde believes she has discovered hidden evil and corruption in her rural community in Sweden. In desperation, she flees her husband and her remote farm, turning to her son Daniel for help. But what exactly is she running from? Absolutely could not put this book down!
Anonymous 10 months ago
I liked the story and how things didn't happen as you thought they might. However, I was disappointed in the ending. Still a good read.
Anonymous 12 months ago
Very unpredictable and lots of twists! Not sure who to believe up until the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Interesting story that keeps you guessing
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
The Farm kept me reading to the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I read it in two days. I read the sample first and I had to buy the book. The characters in the story are very interesting and the way the main character tells her story is so unique and inviting to keep reading. Irecommend this book 100%.
tedfeit0 More than 1 year ago
This novel has many of the aspects of banality, but it is anything but triteness. In fact, it bristles with originality. The plot centers on Daniel, the homosexual son of a couple who worked hard all their lives only to end up with almost nothing because of investments destroyed during poor economic times. They choose to buy a farm in a remote part of Sweden, where Daniel’s mother was born and lived until she left for England at the age of 16 years. There the plan for a contented retirement falls apart when she encounters what she believes to be a conspiracy. Daniel, who has consistently put off visiting his parents because he is reluctant to disclose his sexual preference and introduce them to his significant other, receives a shocking phone call from his father informing him that his mother is not well, suffering from imagined occurrences and actually a psychotic breakdown. She is brought to a hospital and Daniel prepares to fly to Sweden, but before he can, his mother leaves the hospital and flies to London in an effort to enlist his assistance in reporting the conspiracy to the police. This begins a slow, painstaking presentation by Daniel’s mother, as she unfolds her experiences, observations and conclusions on the perceived evils that have taken place in the vicinity of the farm, including a possible sex ring involving young girls and maybe the murder of the 16-year-old daughter of a leading resident of the area. At the conclusion, Daniel undertakes to investigate the allegations by flying to Sweden and tracing his mother’s life from the beginning to the recent events. And it turns out to be quite a trip giving the author an opportunity to turn everything upside down. Highly recommended.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
JessLucy More than 1 year ago
Loved it! This is the first book I've read by this author but not the last! Flawless plot and gorgeous prose make this psychological thriller a cut above. You may also like: anything by Ruth Rendell (aka Barbara Vine), the Jack Reacher series by Lee Child, The Devil's Feather and The Shape of Snakes by Minette Walters and Gone Girl, by Gillian Flynn.
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ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Anne Boling for Readers' Favorite This is a review of the audio version of The Farm by Tom Rob Smith. Dan must determine whether his mother has lost her mind or has stumbled onto a conspiracy to hide the murder of a young woman. When his mother shows up at Heathrow airport, carrying a leather bag with “evidence,” she asks only one thing of him - to allow her to tell her story her way, systematically. After agreeing to listen, Dan sits quietly as his mother opens the bag and displays her evidence, one piece at a time, explaining its significance as she does. Could evil exist in rural Sweden or is it merely the imagination of a woman in the midst of a mental breakdown?  Tom Rob Smith leads the reader on a journey through what can be madness or a threat to Tilde, his main character’s life. I listened closely, trying to determine whether Tilde is insane. Along with Daniel, I became her judge and jury. Often the evidence was confusing, but it was meant to be. I did not know who to trust; the evidence at times seemed outlandish and impossible and yet … Tom Rob Smith is a talented author. He kept me guessing to the end. He also left me wanting more. When a book leaves you wanting more you know it is good. The Farm is sure to please fans of mystery and suspense. I would be remiss if I did not mention the extremely talented readers, James Langton and Suzanne Toren. Their voices brought this book to life by contributing the perfect accents and nuances to the narration.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Intriguing concept. But it was really tedious (maybe kind of boring even?) to read and not as thrilling as I would have expected. I didn't really like any of the characters and ultimately didn't care whether mom was nutty or dad was evil. What should have been a page turner turned into a pleasant enough summer read, but nothing I'd recommend.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I've read and enjoyed other books by Snith. Wanted to this one. Read 150 pages and still couldn't figure out what this book is about. No reason to finish it.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
BrandieC More than 1 year ago
The Farm is a terrific psychological thriller in the vein of Gillian Flynn's Gone Girl and Alice LaPlante's Turn of Mind. In The Farm, Smith gives us two potentially unreliable narrators: Tilde, who is convinced that her husband and the other men in her community are embroiled in a terrible criminal conspiracy, and her son Daniel, who must decide whether his mother is psychotic or his father a villain. The story unfolds in roughly alternating chapters, as Tilde presents her "evidence" to Daniel and Daniel assesses the meaning of that evidence. Much of Tilde's testimony is gleaned from her diary; this approach, reminiscent of Gone Girl, immediately sucks the reader in, exposing us to the clues as Tilde encountered them. Tilde is a sympathetic character from the moment she arrives on the page; she tells her story so calmly and logically that the reader, just as Tilde herself, feels drawn to the inescapable conclusion that something is indeed rotten in the state of Sweden. And yet . . . what happened to Tilde in the summer of 1963? Is her personal experience tainting her perception of recent events? That is the question Daniel, and the reader, must resolve. Compared to the fully fleshed-out character Smith has created in Tilde, Daniel is rather flat. He himself acknowledges that he is "weak," but that weakness seems to be as much a failing on Smith's part. While I can appreciate Smith's desire to juxtapose Tilde's strength against Daniel's milder personality, I felt that the only purpose Daniel ultimately served was as a foil to his mother, making his sudden decision to undertake his own investigation hard to swallow. Nevertheless, what he discovers in Sweden provides an unexpected payoff and a satisfying conclusion. I highly recommend The Farm to psychological thriller fans. I received a free copy of The Farm through NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
DannoKR More than 1 year ago
Excellent read. The plot is well thought out and leaves you as undecided as the main character. You get a great mental image of people and scenes without the overabundance of description. This is one of the things that I expect from great writers. Nothing will make me put down a book faster than a too much description of setting and characters. Very well done.