One dark December night, in a small seaside town, a little girl is found abandoned. When her mother arrives twenty frantic minutes later, authorities release the pair, believing it to be an innocent accident of a toddler running off.
But when a man is found beaten and left for dead in his apartment and a bedroom is discovered to contain a padlock and–most worryingly of all–children’s toys, DS Joanna Harper begins to suspect the little girl on the seafront was not who her mother claimed. Worse, when CCTV footage reveals an image of the pair, Harper realizes she knows the woman almost as well as she knows herself: it’s her estranged daughter, Ruby.
Desperate to reach Ruby before the police find her, Harper knows her deception might just cost her everything. But if it means choosing between her daughter or her career, Harper knows there’s no question. She’ll protect her daughter no matter what. But what Harper doesn’t know is that someone–or something–else is searching for Ruby and the little girl, too. Waiting to bring them home . . . once and for all.
***Thanks to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for an eARC of this book. The following review is my honest reflection on the text provided.
solid, good read:
I really enjoyed The Hidden. As a creepy psychological thriller with a folklore twist, it’s a combination I haven’t often read before. Golding balanced this incredibly well by overtly hinting at the fantasy elements without ever actually confirming them. The story felt grounded and realistic by doing this, which is pretty impressive for the themes here.
I’m not going to write too much about The Hidden because I don’t want to give anything away. I thought I understood what this story would be about, but I was proven wrong several times. There were two particular moments when the intensity was sky-high, and a sentence sent chills running down my spine with an incredibly creepy, blindsiding twist. 100% worth the read just for these moments, but the rest of the book lived up to this feeling and kept me entirely invested in what would happen next. It may be partly due to my predilection for fantasy, but this is one of my favourite psychological thrillers this year.