Eerie. Creepy. Oh-so-twisted.
I featured The Chalk Man on my list of Five Books I'm Reading This Summer and Five You Should, (which I will be updating soon) but I realized I hadn't fully reviewed it yet.
In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence. They spend their days biking around their sleepy English village and looking for any taste of excitement they can get. The chalk men are their secret code: little chalk stick figures they leave for one another as messages only they can understand. But then a mysterious chalk man leads them right to a dismembered body, and nothing is ever the same.
In 2016, Eddie is fully grown, and thinks he's put his past behind him. But then he gets a letter in the mail, containing a single chalk stick figure. When it turns out that his friends got the same message, they think it could be a prank . . . until one of them turns up dead.
That's when Eddie realizes that saving himself means finally figuring out what really happened all those years ago.
If you follow my reviews, you know that I despise URNs (UnReliable Narrators). The quickest way to make me shun a book is to tell me it is "the new Gone Girl or The Girl on the Train". Because I pretty much wanted to throat punch all those characters.
Eddie's not exactly an URN, but don't trust everything he tells you.
Told in a dual timeline, C.J. Tudor has this very lyrical writing style that lulls you into a story then throws something out as if just making sure you're paying attention. A few times I was reading along and suddenly was like, "Wait, what???" and would have to read it again.
In other books, that would probably annoy me, but it worked for this story.
Which is why at the very, very end I was rereading and rereading to make sure it really said that, then I was texting my friends: W.T.F?????
But in a good way.
The story is intriguing, twisty, and dark. It does leave you with a slightly, unfinished feeling, and questions. Lots and lots of questions.
I would absolutely recommend it to my friends who love suspense, thriller, and aren't bothered by every loose end not being tied in a neat little bow.