Tuesday, October 10, 2017

Hide and Seek by MJ Arlidge

Happy Book Birthday to MJ Arlidge whose latest Helen Grace mystery hits shelves today!

After being framed for a series of murders, Helen Grace has been sent to Halloway to await trial. The prison is on its last legs, set to be closed by the end of the year and understaffed as a result. Helen, a cop responsible for a fair number of the women housed there, certainly hasn't made any friends. It's just a matter of keeping her head down and waiting for trial - or to be proven innocent. As far as the latter, she has help on the outside, but most of her former colleagues have turned against her in the wake of her arrest. 

Then an inmate in the cell next to Helen's is brutally murdered. While locked up for the night. Helen heard nothing, but can't help investigate. And as more bodies pile up, it becomes clear time is running out: not only must she find a way to clear her name, she now has to survive Halloway, too!

If dark and twisty is to your taste (as it definitely is mine), this is a series you really don't want to miss. And I can personally attest to the fact that you can dive into this one without having read the five predecessors - I missed book five, Little Boy Blue. Much to my shame! Though there are spoilers for Blue in Hide and Seek, I plan to go back and read that one very shortly. I love this series!

Helen is hard as nails, but she has a hidden side. This is something we know from previous outings and is reiterated here in Hide and Seek. That facade and the fact that she lets very few people in is exactly what's left her now at the mercy of the prison system and the courts. She's been framed for murder. By her own nephew. And only one cop on the outside is pursuing the case from that angle. Everyone else has apparently washed their hands of Helen in spite of the years she's spent on the police force and the accomplishments she's made there.

Which sucks.

As a reader who's taken the time to get to know Helen through much of the series, it really sucks to see her in this situation. And yet, she's Helen Grace! And of course when inmates start getting murdered in their own locked cells she's going to investigate!

Arlidge's plots are complex and, as mentioned, quite twisted. But they're also oh so fabulously put together. And again, you can dive into this one straight away, but if you want to start from the beginning, you'll see that Helen's (and the department's) growth from each installment to the next is fabulously thought out. I can't wait for the next installment!

Here's the series list in order, if you're interested:
Eeeny Meeny
Pop Goes the Weasel
The Doll's House
Liar Liar
Little Boy Blue
Hide and Seek
Love Me Not (2018)

1 comment:

Lori's Reading Corner said...

Finally starting to catch up with this series.