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Book Review: "Hide" by Kiersten White

3/5 - original and exciting, but needs a bit of polishing...

By Annie KapurPublished 15 days ago 3 min read
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From: Amazon

After reading Mister Magic, I became really interested in the works of Kiersten White and so, I read her other novel entitled Hide. I am going to say this before anything else, Hide was written before Mister Magic and so I did not expect it to be as good as the latter novel. However, it was actually really quite interesting. The storyline was pretty original but for me, there were too many characters. Apart from Mack, I did not feel like I could remember many of the characters because there were a) so many of them and b) some of them had very similar personalities. So there are some clear advantages and disadvantages of this story. Let's have a look at what it is actually about.

Mack is a tragic woman who lives in a shelter when someone informs her about a game where fourteen people are selected to play hide and seek in an abandoned amusement park. She unwillingly submits knowing she has few other options and so, when she meets the fourteen other people she makes a friend but tries not to become too attached. At first, I thought it would have been a good idea to get to know all of the names of the characters but not only did that prove fruitless because there were so many, but it also proved pointless as some get picked off before I had time to process who they were.

The problem is that all fourteen people are supposed to hide and they don't really know who or what is following them. They hear footsteps, but they aren't discernably human. They try everything from drawing arrows to find their way around the park to trying to remember the layout uncannily in their memory. This part seemed a bit weird to me. If you were playing a game of hide and seek, why would you draw arrows towards where you were going or at least, where you had been? It seems to defeat the purpose. However, I gloss over this point to get back to the fact that some of these characters are not just stupid but unlikeable too.

From: Wordpress

Next we have those weird sections from 1925 and 1946 that have been inserted into the story. I think that her book Mister Magic was better at interweaving different timelines and different aspects of literature such as letters and articles. I feel like I was not properly prepared for the one in Hide as much because there was no real introduction to it - it kind of just appeared. I feel like it wasn't really introduced well either, the letters were short and didn't really explain much, they just went through things as if it had been the case the whole time. If this section nearer the beginning then it would have made more sense instead of just being added in.

After this, we have quite a strange ending. It is not really a happy ending but it is not really a sad one either. The characters who you would expect to be there at the end are there at the end and so, there are no surprises there. I think everyone really roots for the same characters and so, it just seems correct that the three characters with similar personalities are left. However, what actually happens regarding them in the final chapters is a bit strange and almost seems too easy. Are we trying to tell ourselves that since 1925, nobody else had this idea? I feel like it's simply odd and doesn't make very much sense to end the book in this way. I was expecting a more dramatic and tense ending, even one that cut into the reader's sense of optimism a bit more.

All in all, I liked the book and what it got from a certain story in Greek Mythology. However, there are things that were definitely done better in this writer's second novel and I hope that in the future, this will just continue to get better. With quite a good premise and a certain flair for pancakes with chocolate chip faces on them (that appears in both books and I don't know why), this writer is proving to be pretty good at constructing some memorable horror stories.

literature
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About the Creator

Annie Kapur

188K+ Reads on Vocal.

English Lecturer.

Film and Writing (M.A)

📍Birmingham, UK

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