So this week’s book was another book that caught me by surprise. I wanted to read this for a good couple months before I actually bought it. I first read the synopsis when I saw it in Morrisons while I was doing my food shop. I picked it up with my November haul from Waterstones in the buy one get one half price offer as I still found myself still really wanting to read it, what must have been about 4 months later. I had never read anything by C.J. Tudor but I had been told that her book Chalk Man was amazing so I was curious of what her writing style would be like!
This book, to look at is amazing. The fade from black to red contrasting with the pale font is a real eye catcher. Then the little paper person with the blood and the childish hand writing just adds a little bit of a spooky/ominous feel as well creating that perfect thriller/mystery vibe. What I also found interesting is the edges of the pages when the book is closed form an image of a chain of red paper people which join on to the spine of the book. However on the spine they are white and one solitary paper person has a drip of blood running down the head, adding further to the mystery vibe.
So the synopsis of this book is what lead me to believe that this book was going to be a bit of a crime/who-did-it type of novel but I was wrong. It is split into two parts Then and Now. It doesn’t give a lot away but it is intriguing. I’ve inserted it below for you to read:
THEN – One night, my little sister went missing. There were searches, appeals. Everyone thought the worst. And then, miraculously, she came back. She couldn’t, or wouldn’t, say what happened. But she wasn’t the same afterwards. She wasn’t my Annie. Sometimes my own little sister scared me to death…
NOW – The email arrives in my inbox: I know what happened to your sister. It’s happening again…
for me I thought this book would just be featured around Annie and her sibling and the range of characters would be small, I wasn’t dead on with that. This is more of a creepy thriller than a crime book or a crime based thriller. But just as much as this synopsis grabbed me, the book did exactly the same.
It took me a couple of chapters to get fully into the book, it does open with quite a sensitive scene which could be triggering for some readers just as a pre-warning for those thinking of reading but maybe triggered by suicide, the prologue maybe difficult for you but the rest of the book doesn’t focus too much on that, it is a small piece to a very complex story. After I had processed where the tone of this book was going I was hooked. By chapter three, when I knew this was something other than a crime book I couldn’t put it down. I didn’t expect the book to go the way it did. It definitely kept me on my toes.
Whenever I thought I had the story figured out another little twist came into play and I had to re-evaluate and make a new theory. It made it fun to read. I did struggle to love the main character, Joe as much as I would normally expect but I think that was because if I pictured him as an actual person in my life, I probably wouldn’t get on with him but for the means of the book he was a great main role. Despite his bad habits or choices he did have a streak of caring and goodness in him which did pull through in key moments of the book which made me warm more to him as his story progressed. Even the Epilogue threw me a curve ball and even gave me goose bumps, a very creepy, unexpected ending.
I don’t want to include any spoilers, just in case anyone is reading but has not yet read the book. So I will just wrap it up here stating that C.J. Tudor is a terrific author and can definitely wind a tale so captivating and entertaining and I will definitely be reading more of her work. I even plan on adding The Chalk Man onto my December Haul. I’d go as far as rating The Taking of Annie Thorne 5/5, I really enjoyed the read and couldn’t put it down even if I tried.
Star rating /5