THE HIDDEN PLACE, by C.J. Tudor, Doubleday Canada, Crown Publishing, Penguin Random House, MUST BUY


Joe never wanted to come back to Arnhill. After the way things ended with his old gang–the betrayal, the suicide, the murder–and after what happened when his sister went missing, the last thing he wanted to do was return to his hometown. But Joe doesn’t have a choice. Because judging by what was done to that poor Morton kid, what happened all those years ago to Joe’s sister is happening again. And only Joe knows who is really at fault.

Lying his way into a teaching job at his former high school is the easy part. Facing off with former friends who are none too happy to have him back in town–while avoiding the enemies he’s made in the years since–is tougher. But the hardest part of all will be returning to that abandoned mine where it all went wrong and his life changed forever, and finally confronting the shocking, horrifying truth about Arnhill, his sister, and himself. Because for Joe, the worst moment of his life wasn’t the day his sister went missing. It was the day she came back.

approx. 278 pages

Out February 5th, 2019


I received this book in exchange for my honest review.

C.J. Tudor is a fairly new author whose debut novel, The Chalkman, was reviewed by me. This is my review of that book. Here

I also helped promote her work and even interviewed her.  See my interview. Here

This is her second book in the thriller genre.

The Hiding Place is even better than The Chalkman. I read it in two sittings.

Tudor is a remarkable writer with a style that fringes on that of Stephen King’s. She wrote both novels with the same draw after ther ending, with the reader wanting more. There were tad bits and pieces that had not been answered and that was okay because the story didn’t suffer from these lingering bits. It just made the creepiness of the story even more brilliant and lingering.

I absolutely loved the MC, Joe.  He was full of faults, structured with impossible layers and quite equipped to deal with all the crap dumped on him with sarcasm and wit.  Just when you think he’s doomed, he draws on a remarkable inner strength and rallies to the fight.  You want to hug him for what he’s suffered through, all the lies and untruths that he has shouldered for years, and cheer for his ingenious ability to right so many wrongs as best as he can.  In the end who he thought was a true friend wasn’t and he didn’t seem disappointed, but rather justified in his cautious nature.

I felt a bit of Stephen King’s “It” atmosphere at times which creeped me out completely. There’s a supernatural element and a distinct macabre setting to wrangle with.  The pages flew by. Excellent plot development, fast-pacing, perfect setting, you can’t go wrong.

Tudor’s talents as a writer are continuing to grow. Her ability to create atmospheric mysteries using tight prose and complicated nuances in extraordinary settings is proof of her creative capabilities.  I look forward to her next book.

I gave this one:


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