I think that most lovers of psychological thrillers will have come across, in one way or another, the highly commended novel The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor. This time last year, I was on the book tour for the release of that amazing novel and I honestly couldn’t have loved it any more than I did. Naturally, being invited on the book tour for C.J. Tudor’s follow up to that, The Taking of Annie Thorne, was very exciting and once again I have many amazing things to say about the book and about C. J. Tudor.
It’s fair to say that my expectations for this one were particularly high – I would argue that the Chalk Man is probably one of the best thrillers that I’ve read since I started writing about books and it was definitely one of the reviews that I enjoyed writing the most – and I have reviewed a LOT of books in my time. I love me a creepy thriller and The Taking of Annie Thorne was definitely a creepy thriller.
Set in a small town, The Taking of Annie Thorne follows Joe Thorne, who returns to his childhood town years down the line after receiving a mysterious, anonymous letter about his sister. His dead sister, that is. The message claims that they know what happened to his sister and, as anybody probably would in a situation like this one, Joe is intrigued enough about the letter that he returns home – where everything seems to start happening all over again. There’s something especially eerie about children in thrillers like this one- they add that element of creepy that just gives a thriller that little bit of something else. The Taking of Annie Thorne combines creepy children with mysterious letters, unexplained deaths and a whole range of other things that, when combined, make the perfect story. The story is eerie in all the right places and its beautiful descriptiveness allow you to perfectly envision everything that is going on. Tudor has a skill of slowly revealing information as and when she thinks you need it – all you want to to is keep on reading and when the last page arrived I was strangely disappointed that it didn’t just go on forever and ever.
It was that good. If we’re making comparisons, I would argue that I did prefer The Chalk Man but I do feel as though it would be difficult to beat – I loved it that much. If you’re looking for a psychological thriller to fill the void since you read The Chalk Man, however, then The Taking of Annie Thorne is probably the book for you.