This rreview is written with thanks to Pigeonhole for the opportunity to read and review Hide & Seek.
CLOSE YOUR EYES
The game of hide and seek is over, everyone has gone home, but little Lily Murphy hasn’t been found. Her parents search the woods and tell themselves that the worst hasn’t happened – but deep down they know this peaceful Dublin suburb will never be the same again.
COUNT TO TEN
Years later, Joanna moves into a new house. It seems perfect in every way, until she learns that this was once Lily Murphy’s home. From that moment onwards, a sense of dread seems to follow her from room to room.
AND WHEN YOU OPEN THEM, YOUR CHILD IS GONE
As Joanna unravels the secrets at the heart of this close-knit community, her own dark past begins to resurface. Because she thinks she knows what really happened to Lily – and if the truth gets out, it might be her undoing…
Hide & Seek starts quickly and the fast pace is maintained the whole way through. Mara’s writing is thoroughly engaging and it hurt to finish reading at the end of each stave. There are so many secrets and lies and I really wanted to know the answers to all the questions that Joanna had.
The novel has a lot of characters across the two different time frames, 1985 and 2018. They’re all quite well developed, although they’re definitely not all likeable. I found Cynthia, in particular, to be evil and I loved the way she got under my skin, especially towards the end. However, at times, I did find it difficult to keep up with who was who and how everything was connected. I don’t think this was helped by the stave format, as not being able to read as quickly as I normally would meant I found it harder to retain the information.
At first, I found it difficult to figure out where the story was going, but as it reached the end, there were so many twists and turns and I was shocked by the author’s clever plotting.
There are some themes that emerge as the plot comes together that some readers may find upsetting. However, this is handled in a sensitive way and it added a really emotional layer to the story.
Hide & Seek is available from Amazon.