What a WILD ride this was! Hidden Pictures, by Jason Rekulak is one of those out there kind of mystery stories, but such a fun read nonetheless.
Mallory is a recovering drug addict who’s hired as a nanny for an affluent family, the Maxwells, in a New Jersey suburb. She develops a great relationship with Teddy, the 5-year-old boy she cares for. While she loves everything about her gig as a nanny, Mallory becomes increasingly worried about Teddy and the disturbing pictures he draws. His artwork depicts unnerving imagery inspired by his relationship with “Anya”, his imaginary friend. Mallory believes that Teddy’s drawings are related to an unsolved murder that took the life of a woman who lived on the Maxwells property. With the help of a neighbor and a newly acquired friend, Mallory tries to figure out what the pictures mean and how they relate to the unsolved murder, but nothing is as it seems!
This won’t be a story for everyone, but it was right up my alley. I usually don’t appreciate suspense/mystery books with really unbelievable elements, but it worked for me in this one. If you’re not a fan of paranormal activity in stories, this probably won’t be one you want to pick up. There’s a supernatural aspect I personally enjoyed that made this a really creepy read.
I really liked the way Mallory’s drug addiction and sobriety played into the paranormal parts of the story. And I really loved her relationship with Teddy…super endearing. There was a twist I didn’t see coming…not shocking, but unexpected. A few questionable moments from the Maxwells left me scratching my head like, “what?!?!” Overall I thought it was a really unique and original book.
I wouldn’t classify this as a horror story and I personally didn’t think it was scary at all. Just a little bit haunting and spooky. Nothing that made me want to keep my lights on at night, lol.
I personally enjoyed this one a lot and gave it 4 out of 5 stars.
TW: drug addiction
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