The Chalk Man
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.

The Chalk Man Details

TitleThe Chalk Man
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseJan 9th, 2018
PublisherCrown Publishing Group (NY)
ISBN-139781524760984
Rating
GenreMystery, Thriller, Fiction, Mystery Thriller

The Chalk Man Review

  • Chelsea Humphrey
    January 1, 1970
    I haven't felt this sure of a book's worthiness to be read since I picked up The Dry by Jane Harper back in January. I'll admit, I find myself enjoying a majority of the books that I read; I don't know if I'm just not as picky as other readers or if, after so many years of reading, I generally can tell what will tickle my fancy. That said, there are the books you enjoy, and then there are THOSE books. You know the ones I mean; the unicorns, the diamonds in the rough, the ones you'll be shoving i I haven't felt this sure of a book's worthiness to be read since I picked up The Dry by Jane Harper back in January. I'll admit, I find myself enjoying a majority of the books that I read; I don't know if I'm just not as picky as other readers or if, after so many years of reading, I generally can tell what will tickle my fancy. That said, there are the books you enjoy, and then there are THOSE books. You know the ones I mean; the unicorns, the diamonds in the rough, the ones you'll be shoving in peoples face screaming "OH MYLANTA READ THIS BOOK! LET'S TALK ABOUT IT!!!" because it's just that good. Well, it's official-this one gets the highly prestigious Holy Guacamole stamp of approval from The Suspense Is Thrilling Me. Please, please, hold your applause.After two close friends had read an arc of this (one of which sent me her prized copy to borrow because she's the bestest book bestie ever), I knew I had to pick it up immediately. I was nervous to get myself too hyped up over it, as I tend to become disappointed when that happens, but if there was ever a book worthy of being hyped this was it baby! I really don't want to say anything about the plot, other than it was constantly twisting and turning in ways I couldn't predict. This was a huge bonus, but I adore how this wasn't the focal point of the story; the entire plot wasn't dependent on cloak and dagger tricks yet was enhanced by the many reveals along the way. The story is told between past and present, but our narrator is one consistent voice recalling events from the past and telling the present plot, which gives a natural ease in following along. There are some graphic descriptions of violence in the act and in the aftermath, so those with a sensitive stomach may want to give this a hard pass, but otherwise I can't think of a single reason not to pick this book up if you're a fan of twisty psychological thrillers.I struggle in believing that The Chalk Man is a debut novel for author C.J. Tudor; the writing quality is so excellent you could have told me a seasoned, bestselling author had written this and I would have believed you without question. The complex nature of the story, the insertion of comic relief and dark humor, as well as equal parts action and characterization inserted really made for the trifecta of perfect books. If I could give this novel 100 stars I would do so in a heartbeat! Sometimes you can just tell early on which books will be buzz worthy in the coming seasons, and I truly believe that The Chalk Man will be talked about non-stop by fans looking for their next psychological thriller in the crime fiction realm. Go ahead and pre-order this one, mark it on your TBR, do whatever you need to do to make sure you don't miss out on grabbing this book the SECOND it hits shelves. I'll be buying a finished copy for my personal collection as I can see this being a reread in the future for myself, although realistically I'll likely shove it at someone and make them read it instead. HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY HIGHLY RECOMMENDED!!!!!!!! *Sorry, did I mention that I liked this book? Yes? Ok, just making sure. :)
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  • Deanna
    January 1, 1970
    My reviews can also be seen at: https://deesradreadsandreviews.wordpress.com/After hearing so many great things about “The Chalk Man” I decided I had to read it. This book was very hyped up and I hoped I wasn’t expecting too much. I went into it with an open mind and hoped for the best. I am happy to say that I really enjoyed it.The book has a rather morbid opening, a gruesome discovery in the woods. I was immediately intrigued.1986 - Eddie and his friends always met up on Saturday but THIS Satu My reviews can also be seen at: https://deesradreadsandreviews.wordpress.com/After hearing so many great things about “The Chalk Man” I decided I had to read it. This book was very hyped up and I hoped I wasn’t expecting too much. I went into it with an open mind and hoped for the best. I am happy to say that I really enjoyed it.The book has a rather morbid opening, a gruesome discovery in the woods. I was immediately intrigued.1986 - Eddie and his friends always met up on Saturday but THIS Saturday was different …the FAIR was in town. The fair had always been special but this was even better because it was the first time they were allowed to go on their own. No parents or other adults with them --- in their words… “it was going to be Ace” “I could already hear the thump, thump of the fairground music, and smell the burgers and candyfloss. Today was going to be perfect”But what starts as a wonderful day at the fair…ends in tragedy. It was the last normal day for all of them. The terrible day at the fair showed Eddie just how fast life can change. “I understood how things can change in an instant. All the stuff we take for granted can just be ripped away” But there was even more horror to come…Life goes on and everyone does their best to put that day behind them. But it’s always there in the back of Eddie’s mind. When one of Eddie’s friends receives a bucket of chalk for his birthday, the boys are far from impressed. However, they soon find a good use for the chalk. It’s a great way to leave private messages for each other. But then the chalk figures start appearing on their own…2016 - Eddie (Ed) is now forty-two years old. He’s tried hard to put the past behind him. Then a letter arrives from an unknown sender. When Ed sees what is inside the envelope he hopes it’s a joke or a prank. But it soon becomes clear that it is not a joke. It seems the past doesn’t want to be left behind. For Ed to truly move on it means he somehow has to figure out what really happened all those years before.So many secrets… “Everyone has secrets, things they know they shouldn’t do but do anyway. Mine was…… NOPE! I am not going to finish that sentence. You’ll have to read the book if you want to find out.­­­­­I find it hard to believe that “The Chalk Man” is C.J. Tudor’s debut novel. She knows how to write a story that pulls the reader in. There was so much going on, alternating between 1986 and 2016, different story-lines almost. But everything comes together. Some parts were a bit gruesome for my taste but I found the rest of the story made up for it.I thought that this was a well-written read with a unique story-line, compelling situations, and some great twists. I really wanted to find out how everything was going to come together but I had to stop myself from jumping ahead as I found I almost missed a few things that the author strategically slipped in here and there. There were a few things I wished I had answers for but overall, I thought it all came together well. And that ending? I NEVER saw it coming.Thank you to NetGalley and Penguin Random House Canada for the opportunity to read this book in exchange for my honest review.
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  • Susanne Strong
    January 1, 1970
    5 Stars.Now This is How You do It!!C.J. Tudor has written One of the Best Thrillers of the YEAR my friends.  If there is one mystery you decide to pick up - it should be this one!!Reminiscent of Stephen King’s The Body - known to most people as the movie Stand By Me - “The Chalk Man” is a story about 5 young friends: (four boys and a girl), who go through an experience at the cusp of adolescence, something fierce and terrifying. Something that haunts them for the rest of their lives.As kids in 1 5 Stars.Now This is How You do It!!C.J. Tudor has written One of the Best Thrillers of the YEAR my friends.  If there is one mystery you decide to pick up - it should be this one!!Reminiscent of Stephen King’s The Body - known to most people as the movie Stand By Me - “The Chalk Man” is a story about 5 young friends: (four boys and a girl), who go through an experience at the cusp of adolescence, something fierce and terrifying. Something that haunts them for the rest of their lives.As kids in 1986, they live life freely: hanging out at the playground, riding bikes, sending coded messages to each other using different colored chalk. And then they discover something and it’s bad.  It changes everything.Fast forward to 2016 and everyone is quite grown up. Eddie known known as Ed, (one of the kids who made the discovery) is a teacher, living in the house he grew up in. The past haunts him, as it does the rest of the friends who stayed behind, including Gav and Hoppo. If only the past stayed in the past. Yet bad things: they keep happening. And somehow, Chalk Men keep appearing and Ed can’t figure out how or why. He knows it means something. He and the gang have to figure it out even if it’s the last thing they want. And even if it spells trouble.“The Chalk Men” reads like an old school mystery.. I felt like I was back in the 80’s, living life, hanging out with my friends after school.. everything felt really familiar - well, except for the bad stuff that kept happening to Eddie, Gav, Nikki, Hoppo and Mike. Yeah that stuff? It never happened to me. (LOL!!)This book wowed me big time. I couldn’t tear myself away. The characters, they felt like friends. Each one vivid, rich, alive... And what the kids discover? All I can say, I don’t know how they slept at night.. How it impacts them as adults and what happens to them then? Unfrakkinbelievable. C.J. Tudor knocked me for a loop. I didn’t see it coming. And I tried, believe you, me. So what else can I tell you? This is a suspense novel you absolutely MUST-READ. If you don’t, you are missing out on one of the best mysteries out there.This was a traveling sister read. It included Brenda, Norma, Lindsay, Diane, Melisa and Rita.Thank you to NetGalley, Crown Publishing and C.J. Tudor for an ARC of this novel in exchange for an honest review. Published on NetGalley, Goodreads, Twitter and Facebook on 11.4.17.*Will be published on Amazon on 1.9.18.
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  • Elyse
    January 1, 1970
    NO SPOILERS.... NONE.... NOT EVEN TINY ONES! If more mystery suspense books were written like this one -- I’d read them more often than I do!!!!!ABSOLUTE FAVORITE MYSTERY SUSPENSE novel I’ve read all year!!!!!There is something that feels very different about this book - than other mystery thrillers I’ve read. Wholesome and creepy! Warmth with gore? How is it possible? At times the storytelling is humorous - clever - and charming - other times - my goodness I was shaking my head....( as in YUCK, NO SPOILERS.... NONE.... NOT EVEN TINY ONES! If more mystery suspense books were written like this one -- I’d read them more often than I do!!!!!ABSOLUTE FAVORITE MYSTERY SUSPENSE novel I’ve read all year!!!!!There is something that feels very different about this book - than other mystery thrillers I’ve read. Wholesome and creepy! Warmth with gore? How is it possible? At times the storytelling is humorous - clever - and charming - other times - my goodness I was shaking my head....( as in YUCK, YIKES & WRONG...just WRONG)......But most of the time — my mind was on full alert — TRYING TO FIGURE OUT THE BIG PICTURE.....fitting the mysterious pieces together. Tons of surprises!!!!A sign of a terrific book for me is when I keep thinking about it - BETWEEN my reading sessions. I kept thinking about the different characters — I felt like I lived in the small town Anderbury, in Southern England. I thought about ‘each’ of the characters. ( minor ones too) — I feel that even to describe each of the characters different characteristics- and behaviors are mini spoilers - as I enjoyed learning about them myself - other readers might too....so this is a ‘hold’s back’ review. The heart of ‘what’ happened in the small town of Anderbury..... took place over one summer. The chalk men were all that anyone remembered about the summer of 1986. People got hurt that summer - people died - yet, the drawings of chalk figures were what remain in people’s memories years later, in 2016. But the two were irrevocably intertwined. Everyone was on edge in the summer of 1986: there was a horrific accident - an attack - bullying - deaths - suspicion and wondering if someone you knew was capable of brutal violence... “Nothing felt fresh or colorful anymore or innocent anymore. Like the whole town had been temporarily suspended in its own dusty time capsule”. Lots of “what if’s”......to ponder. AWESOME NOVEL!!!!Thank You Netgalley, Crown Publishing, and huge Kudos to C. J. Tudor
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  • Berit☀️✨
    January 1, 1970
    well HOT damn!!!5 BIG chalk drawn stars🌟WOW! I cannot believe this is this authors debut book.... it was just so extremely well thought out, the characters were well-developed, the pacing of the plot was perfect, I really just can’t think of anything wrong with this book....The story is told from the perspective of Ed.... with two different timelines his present life as a teacher in 2016 and his 12-year-old memories in 1986....Ed and his buddies find a dead body in the woods, and the murder has well HOT damn!!!5 BIG chalk drawn stars🌟WOW! I cannot believe this is this authors debut book.... it was just so extremely well thought out, the characters were well-developed, the pacing of the plot was perfect, I really just can’t think of anything wrong with this book....The story is told from the perspective of Ed.... with two different timelines his present life as a teacher in 2016 and his 12-year-old memories in 1986....Ed and his buddies find a dead body in the woods, and the murder has never quite been solved (at least not in Ed’s mind).... The boys had used chalk drawings to communicate with one another back in the day.... so when Ed receives a drawing and a piece of chalk in the mail, he begins his quest to figure out what really happened all those years ago.... I don’t want to say any more than that and ruin it... just know you will go on a wonderful adventure with Ed filled with twists and turns and revelations you never will see coming.....In addition to this fantastic mystery filled with these wonderful characters, was the nostalgia of the 1980s....as somebody who spent all of her teenage years in the 80s, I thought the author did such an amazing job of making me long for those good old days.... A time when you could ride your bike to the playground, hang out with your friends all day, and didn’t need to come home until the street lights came on.... I didn’t grow up near woods, I never found a dead body, but this book did definitely make me feel a little nostalgic for my childhood....Can’t wait to see what this author has in store for us next!*** thank you to Net Galley and the publisher for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review ***
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  • Maureen
    January 1, 1970
    Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself.” ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneI know it's unusual to start a review by talking about the end of a book, but oh boy what an excellent ending that was!12 year old Eddie Adams and his friends are like any other group of twelve year olds, carefree summer days messing about as kids do, until the day the fair visits the village of Anderbury. A Waltzer carriage breaks away at great speed and careens into the crowd, causing life Fear of a name increases fear of the thing itself.” ― J.K. Rowling, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's StoneI know it's unusual to start a review by talking about the end of a book, but oh boy what an excellent ending that was!12 year old Eddie Adams and his friends are like any other group of twelve year olds, carefree summer days messing about as kids do, until the day the fair visits the village of Anderbury. A Waltzer carriage breaks away at great speed and careens into the crowd, causing life changing injuries to one teenage girl in particular. That was bad enough, but it was also the day that Eddie met 'The Chalk Man'Eddie and his mates devise a secret code made up of chalk messages in different colours - each colour being assigned to one of the gang, so they know exactly which one of them wrote each message. They leave messages at each other's homes, and it provides weeks of fun until the day they discover chalk figures leading them to a dead body, but none of the gang had left these messages!The storyline flits between 1986 and 2016, but how the events of 30 years earlier affect these friends in the present I'm not telling! But rest assured it's a completely riveting journey. There was a great mystery at the heart of it, with some chilling, heart stopping moments, and many twists and turns. The characters were perfect and the whole thing kept me on tenterhooks right the way through. C.J.Tudor has a talent for sure, and it's hard to believe this is her debut novel. Spooky, gripping, compelling!If a movie director doesn't pick up on this one I'll be very surprised!*Thank you to Netgalley and Penguin UK, Michael Joseph for my ARC in exchange for an honest review*
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  • j e w e l s [Books Bejeweled]
    January 1, 1970
    REASONS TO LOVE:the titlethe author's biothe author's acknowledgments at end of bookthat perfect coversuspenseful, addictive, spooky storya combination of STRANGER THINGS (Netflix series) and STAND BY ME (80's movie)The only reason I couldn't give all the stars to this very fun book is due to too many co-winky dinks towards the big reveal at the end. A bit too implausible.I love the 80's vibe of little boys riding around on their bikes getting into all kinds of mischief and seeing things they sh REASONS TO LOVE:the titlethe author's biothe author's acknowledgments at end of bookthat perfect coversuspenseful, addictive, spooky storya combination of STRANGER THINGS (Netflix series) and STAND BY ME (80's movie)The only reason I couldn't give all the stars to this very fun book is due to too many co-winky dinks towards the big reveal at the end. A bit too implausible.I love the 80's vibe of little boys riding around on their bikes getting into all kinds of mischief and seeing things they shouldn't... HIGHLY RECOMMEND! thanks to NetGalley, I was able to read and review this book! It will be published in January 2018.
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  • Meredith
    January 1, 1970
    “NEVER ASSUME. QUESTION everything. Always look beyond the obvious.”Creepy psychological thriller about a group of teenagers who find a dead body buried in the woods in 1986. While the killer was apprehended, all was not as it seemed. When they were 12 years old, Eddie, Hoppo, Metal Mickey, Fat Gav, and Nicky were playing in the woods when they notice drawings of chalk men. The drawings lead them to make a gruesome discovery. This event haunts them for the rest of their lives. In 2016,“Chalk M “NEVER ASSUME. QUESTION everything. Always look beyond the obvious.”Creepy psychological thriller about a group of teenagers who find a dead body buried in the woods in 1986. While the killer was apprehended, all was not as it seemed. When they were 12 years old, Eddie, Hoppo, Metal Mickey, Fat Gav, and Nicky were playing in the woods when they notice drawings of chalk men. The drawings lead them to make a gruesome discovery. This event haunts them for the rest of their lives. In 2016,“Chalk Man” drawings begin to appear once again, causing a great deal of unease amongst the former group of friends. Events are shared from Eddie’s POV, flashing back and forth between 1986 & 2016. Secrets are slowly uncovered and friendships are tested, as Eddie tries to unearth the identity of “The Chalk Man.” This is a well-written, multilayered thriller with an element of mystery that slowly unravels. I loved reading about the complicated dynamics of the friendships between the group, especially when they were young. The twisted ending and the strong writing is what took The Chalk Man to the next level for me. The ending worked to undo all I thought I knew, leaving many questions about Eddie’s reliability as a narrator, causing me to question everything and look at the events that unfolded in a different light: “I suppose it felt, even though we had an ending, that it wasn’t the right one.” I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and the publisher in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Linda
    January 1, 1970
    "People are strange....." crooned in the deep, haunting voice of Jim Morrison of The Doors.Oh, that's only the tip on the piece of chalk that leaves irreverent drawings along the way. Quickly sketched ramblings with elusive meanings. The pages flit back and forth in time from that serrated summer of 1986 in Anderbury. Eddie Adams and his friends are in their twelfth summer of wild boyhood and feel the excitement of good-looking girls and the fast carnival rides that hold promise at the town fair "People are strange....." crooned in the deep, haunting voice of Jim Morrison of The Doors.Oh, that's only the tip on the piece of chalk that leaves irreverent drawings along the way. Quickly sketched ramblings with elusive meanings. The pages flit back and forth in time from that serrated summer of 1986 in Anderbury. Eddie Adams and his friends are in their twelfth summer of wild boyhood and feel the excitement of good-looking girls and the fast carnival rides that hold promise at the town fair. That's when the worst of the worst actually happens. An unimaginable accident occurs when part of a fast-moving ride breaks loose and careens into seventeen year old Elisa. Eddie had just been admiring the young beautiful girl when the mayhem broke out. Mr. Halloran, just newly hired by the school system, grabs Eddie and the two of them try to stop the bleeding of Elisa's nearly amputated leg with Halloran's belt. Eddie turns away when he realizes what the impact did to Elisa's once lovely face.C. J. Tudor creates a boyhood atmosphere here liken to the strength of the comaraderie in Stand By Me and The Goonies. Eddie, Fat Gav, Hoppo, Metal Mickey, and Nicky are as thick as thieves that summer. They will forever be changed by what happened at the fair in those climactic moments. Tudor presents her adult characters through the limited lense of twelve year old boys. The adults' driftings and meanderings throughout the story will leave questionable trail marks in addition to the iffy honesty and the strange intentions of the boys themselves.The discovery of a body in the woods during this same summer will certainly shake the leaves off many a tree. From 1986 to 2016 Eddie's voice will lay the groundwork for a very intense storyline filled with the reverberations of childhood slamming head-long into the chunks and pieces of their eventually unstable adult lives. "I need to grasp it quickly before it scuttles away again like the hideous head spider from my dream." Have mercy! C.J. Tudor has an exceptional style with tasty words and phrases placed adeptly throughout this book. Her descriptives are rich in hue and that uneasy tone creaks along with uncanny results. Tudor gets into her characters' heads and seems to know just when to blink and just when to stare. The ending left me a bit unsettled. So much was unraveling at a fast pace. It was the lifting of the masks with results that sizzled and burned. It stirred up the cauldron in ways that brought new thoughts to the surface and old thoughts submerged. And the door was left opened just a crack.....I received a copy of The Chalk Man through NetGalley for an honest review. Many thanks to Crown Publishing and to C.J. Tudor for the opportunity. I'm definitely keeping my eyes open for the next one from this highly talented author.
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  • Larry H
    January 1, 1970
    I give this 4.5 stars.Sometimes you see a bunch of your Goodreads friends raving about a book, and you hope that you'll find it just as good as they did. In the case of C.J. Tudor's terrific debut thriller, The Chalk Man , that definitely was the case for me."Personally, I have found that it is much better to take your fears, lock them up in a nice, tightly shut box and shove them into the deepest, darkest corner of your mind."In the summer of 1986, Eddie and his four best friends—Hoppo, Fat Ga I give this 4.5 stars.Sometimes you see a bunch of your Goodreads friends raving about a book, and you hope that you'll find it just as good as they did. In the case of C.J. Tudor's terrific debut thriller, The Chalk Man , that definitely was the case for me."Personally, I have found that it is much better to take your fears, lock them up in a nice, tightly shut box and shove them into the deepest, darkest corner of your mind."In the summer of 1986, Eddie and his four best friends—Hoppo, Fat Gav, Metal Mickey, and Nicky (even though she was a girl)—were on the cusp of adolescence. They bike around, commit mischief, tease each other, and try to avoid Mickey's older brother and his bullying friends. It seems like a magical summer—they even leave coded messages in chalk for each other to spell out their plans or their whereabouts.But the idyllic time seems to be ending, as the adults around them wind up in the midst of some trouble, and tragedies strike close to home. Then one day, a strange chalk man leads them to a dismembered body in the woods. Nothing is ever the same again.Thirty years later, Ed is still living in his childhood home. He'd like to think that he's put the events of that summer behind him, but the fact is, he's never been able to settle down into a relationship, he still spends time with Gav and Hoppo, and he teaches at his old school. When he gets an anonymous letter with a chalk man in it, it dredges up those memories, as does the return of an old friend who had seemingly gone away. And when he finds out that all of his friends received a similar letter, he realizes that perhaps not everything was tied up as neatly as they thought all those years ago.Are there real answers to be found, and if so, what good would it do to find them? Will solving the mystery put everyone's demons to rest and allow them to get on with their lives, or will it put them in danger? Can we ever recapture our childhood innocence after it has been shattered? The Chalk Man hooked me from the very first page and didn't let go. It evoked a little bit of the nostalgic feelings of Stand By Me , with a little more mystery and violence, and a lot of heart. There's a lot going on in this book, lots of twists and turns to keep you guessing and lots of interesting characters to fascinate and (perhaps) distract you. Tudor is a terrific storyteller, and it's so hard to believe this is her debut novel, because the writing is so self-assured.Like with any thriller, I always suspect everyone, and while I was a little surprised at certain twists, and I didn't love every choice Tudor made, I thought this was a great read, one that made me wish I had just a few minutes more to linger over the book every time I picked it up. Believe me, this is one you'll want to read before everyone else starts talking about it.NetGalley and Crown Publishing provided me an advance copy of the book in exchange for an unbiased review. Thanks for making this available! See all of my reviews at http://itseithersadnessoreuphoria.blo....
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  • Melisa
    January 1, 1970
    Ghosts didn’t exist in daylight, or zombies. They only existed in that sleepy hollow between midnight and dawn, crumbling to dust at the sun’s first rays. Or so, at the age of twelve, I still believed.Prepare for some gushing, y’all, because this is one of the best thrillers I’ve read in awhile. This was a really fresh, unique take on a psychological thriller that didn’t follow a formula like anything else out there. It’s difficult to find a unique plot these days, and while this one has been do Ghosts didn’t exist in daylight, or zombies. They only existed in that sleepy hollow between midnight and dawn, crumbling to dust at the sun’s first rays. Or so, at the age of twelve, I still believed.Prepare for some gushing, y’all, because this is one of the best thrillers I’ve read in awhile. This was a really fresh, unique take on a psychological thriller that didn’t follow a formula like anything else out there. It’s difficult to find a unique plot these days, and while this one has been done before, it’s never been told in this way which is why I believe it deserves all 5 stars. This author is one to keep an eye on, mark my words. CJ Tudor (a female author) has told a coming of age story of a 12 year old boy surrounded by tragedy and mystery in a highly convincing way, and in a way like nothing I’ve seen before. There were constantly points being alluded to, but never fully spelled out for the reader - we all loved how the author “shows” rather than “tells”. She is tricky, this author, and will keep you guessing until the very end, and even then you’ll be shaking your head and uttering “what just happened.”This was such a creepy, twisty tale, alternating between 1986 and 2016. The 80’s references were fabulous, the characters were believable, and the whodunnit aspect of the story is like nothing I’ve ever read. The prologue will suck you in right away (super creepy!) and there is one highly uncomfortable bullying scene, but otherwise this author manages to scare you without a ton of graphic violence (though there is some, I amsensitive to this and I got through it ok). I am having a difficult time putting into words how unique this book is without giving away any spoilery, however I highly, highly recommend this to fans of thrillers. Read it now. And let me know what you think later. This was my first group read with the Traveling Sisters and I’m SO glad I was able to join in on this particular book - it brought out elements that I wouldn’t have noticed without ongoing discussion and I’m so thankful to have joined this group of lovely reviewers!Thank you to Netgalley, C.J. Tudor (you have a new fan!) and Crown Publishing for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review. You can also find my reviews at www.thebookcollective.net
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  • Diane S ☔
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 Now this is what I call a fantastic mystery. I love the way this was told, our narrator now in his fifties, takes us back to a summer that changed everything. Has sort of a Christmas story or It vibe to it, in the way it is told. We Tavel back to the eighties, and the author does a great job of portraying this time. Ed, our narrator and his group of friends, four in all and one a girls, as they ride their bikes everywhere, build actual forts, not virtual ones. When the games played were most 4.5 Now this is what I call a fantastic mystery. I love the way this was told, our narrator now in his fifties, takes us back to a summer that changed everything. Has sort of a Christmas story or It vibe to it, in the way it is told. We Tavel back to the eighties, and the author does a great job of portraying this time. Ed, our narrator and his group of friends, four in all and one a girls, as they ride their bikes everywhere, build actual forts, not virtual ones. When the games played were mostly outside except for Pac Man and Donkey Kong. Felt like I was back there with him. It would prove to be a summer when many strange and unforgettable things happened, culminating in the discovery of a body. When one of the boys, he a man, who hasn't been seen for over thirty years, reappears in town, claiming he know who done it, everything seems to start up again.An old time mystery, with a follow the clues type of storyline. What really happened that summer and who is responsible? The chalk men were a nice and creepy touch, though the story as a whole does not have that graphic, shocking horror that so many storylines have now. This entertained without going over the top. A well done job all around, even the ending was satisfying and had many aha moments. Looking forward to more from this talented author.A sisters read where we all agreed this one is a winner.ARC from Netgalley.
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  • Carol
    January 1, 1970
    4+++ Stars. Beware The Chalk Men! Only a few chapters in and I was hooked on Eddie "Munster" Adams and the gang of mischievous 12 year olds who ride bikes around their quaint English village....communicate in secret code....with chalk figures (so cool) to disclose the site of their next rendezvous.The fair was supposed to be fun, and it was at first, but turned out to be the beginning of disastrous times, harmful misadventures and deadly accidents. Add threatening bullies and a creepy new teache 4+++ Stars. Beware The Chalk Men! Only a few chapters in and I was hooked on Eddie "Munster" Adams and the gang of mischievous 12 year olds who ride bikes around their quaint English village....communicate in secret code....with chalk figures (so cool) to disclose the site of their next rendezvous.The fair was supposed to be fun, and it was at first, but turned out to be the beginning of disastrous times, harmful misadventures and deadly accidents. Add threatening bullies and a creepy new teacher to the mix and you have one suspenseful and entertaining read that leads the reader from a haunted playground into the nearby woods....for a horror of a find.THE CHALK MAN alternates smoothly from past to present as Eddie and some old friends find out all has not been forgotten or revealed....even 30 years later. There's still more trouble to come evidenced by creepy dreams and even creepier visions from the grave.C. J. Tudor delivers wonderfully defined and engaging characters in an engrossing mystery-thriller I could have read in a day. Definitely NOT "a pile of stinking buckaroo" but one solid debut!Many thanks to Crown Publishing and NetGalley for the ARC (coming January, 2018) in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Paromjit
    January 1, 1970
    For a debut novel this is astoundingly good, and it has the feel of a classic novel. It expertly moves between two timelines, events that occurred in 1986 to the present. Set in the small town of Anderbury, 4 friends, Eddie 'Munster' Adams, Fat Gav, Metal Mickey, Hoppo and Nicky are 12 years old, whiling away the summer holidays getting into mischief on their bikes, having fun, evolving secret communications through chalk men symbols and in search of excitement and adventure. A series of mishaps For a debut novel this is astoundingly good, and it has the feel of a classic novel. It expertly moves between two timelines, events that occurred in 1986 to the present. Set in the small town of Anderbury, 4 friends, Eddie 'Munster' Adams, Fat Gav, Metal Mickey, Hoppo and Nicky are 12 years old, whiling away the summer holidays getting into mischief on their bikes, having fun, evolving secret communications through chalk men symbols and in search of excitement and adventure. A series of mishaps, tragedies and a macabre murder is to mar and haunt their lives. The narrative is delivered from Eddie's perspective whose mother is a doctor performing abortions which attract vociferous and nasty protests led by a local reverend and his supporters. Eddie's father is a writer for whom dementia takes hold early, leaving Eddie worried that he too will fall victim to it. Eddie becomes a teacher, with a penchant for the drink, still close to Fat Gav, now in a wheelchair, and Hoppo. He is in his forties, still living in his parents home, with a young lodger, Chloe, for whom he harbours an unseemly covert attraction, and the ageing process has not been kind to him. He is visited by the past and the dead, and experiencing vivid nightmares. The friends receive through the post ominous reminders of their youth with the menacing figure of the Chalk Man. And once again murder takes place, leaving Eddie feeling that he has no choice but return to the past to find out who killed the Waltzer girl, Elisa.Tudor paints a picture of Anderbury, a town with some nasty characters, full of lies, secrets, rumours, seething resentments, violence and hypocrisy. Nicky has bruise after bruise appearing on her body and she lives in fear of her fire and brimstone father. Bricks are thrown into Eddie's home, and disturbing packages delivered, as his mother is hounded by anti-abortionists. The Waltzer girl suffers horrific injuries that Eddie witnesses at the Fair, her life is saved by the heroic Mr Halloran, with the help of Eddie. Mr Halloran, an English teacher and artist, saves Eddie from Sean, Metal Mickey's brother, and his bullying and brutal gang from a horrific scenario that takes place in the woods. Mr Halloran is held hostage by his feelings for another, which Eddie becomes privy to, an ominous portent to the tragedy that is to follow. In the present, Eddie meets with Metal Mickey who has a proposition for him. Eddie's journey into the past takes him deep into his own psyche, and a town reluctant to face the truth about its past.This is a dark and atmospheric coming of age novel, beautifully written, tense and suspenseful. Tudor has the reader gripped with his artful and distinct characters, making them never less than compelling. You feel that the group of boys and Nicky feels vibrantly authentic and the creation and development of the character of Eddie is genius. Anderbury is a reflection of many a small town, and the undercurrents of feelings that swarm in such places, the pettiness, the rumours, the conflicts, the poverty, and the need to preserve secrets and reputation. A stolen bike and the giving and placing of a ring highlight the law of unintended consequences. A fantastic must read novel which I highly recommend! Many thanks to Penguin Michael Joseph for an ARC.
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  • Holly B
    January 1, 1970
    Chalk men lurking...I'm sure we all have drawn a chalk man or a chalk girl, but never with the consequences that this young group of kids endure! A very clever thriller full of seething secrets. I read the description for this book and I wasn't sure that this would be something I would enjoy, but I was mesmerized by the slow unraveling of this tale!Told from childhood (1986) to present day (2016) by one of the boys, Eddie. The author's writing transported me back and forth to each time period. T Chalk men lurking...I'm sure we all have drawn a chalk man or a chalk girl, but never with the consequences that this young group of kids endure! A very clever thriller full of seething secrets. I read the description for this book and I wasn't sure that this would be something I would enjoy, but I was mesmerized by the slow unraveling of this tale!Told from childhood (1986) to present day (2016) by one of the boys, Eddie. The author's writing transported me back and forth to each time period. The group of friends use chalk drawings to secretly communicate to each other. Terrible secrets are revealed, frightening scenes are described, and someone will die! We are told to "beware of the chalk man". Will the truth be uncovered?Nothing could distract me while reading this book! I think almost EVERYONE would enjoy this suspenseful, unique, and unpredictable thriller.I won this ebook via Penguin and I am so thrilled I chose this one!
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  • Kendall
    January 1, 1970
    C.J Tudor has an exceptional style of writing that flows beautifully across the pages! Metaphoric, symbolic, and absolutely brilliant.The Chalk Man is a creepy and unique thriller that will leave you aching for more! Beware of the chalk men. This thriller packs a good spicy punch my fellow GR friends! This novel alternates from 1986 to 2016. The discovery of a body in the woods leads to many unsettling nightmares, visions, and creepy memories for Eddie and his gang of friends. The story is told C.J Tudor has an exceptional style of writing that flows beautifully across the pages! Metaphoric, symbolic, and absolutely brilliant.The Chalk Man is a creepy and unique thriller that will leave you aching for more! Beware of the chalk men. This thriller packs a good spicy punch my fellow GR friends! This novel alternates from 1986 to 2016. The discovery of a body in the woods leads to many unsettling nightmares, visions, and creepy memories for Eddie and his gang of friends. The story is told from Eddie's point of view which lays the storyline for these mysterious chalk drawings that ultimately connects to their present unstable adult lives. Tudor creates a small town boyhood atmosphere that has the strong feel of Stand By Me. Oh my gosh I loved Eddie, Fat Gav, Nicky, Metal Mickey and Hoppo! What a strong and amazing set of characters that Tudor has created! Each character is slowly unraveled and you are given a vivid image of how each character is wound in this web of mystery, deceit, and darkness. The ending left me a little bit confused and unsettled. I felt there was soooo much going towards the end that my mind/head got caught up in the spiral. There were so many more questions that I had running through my mind. I feel like the author left just enough bread crumbs for the mouse. I am extremely curious on fellow GR thoughts on this one! Come share your thoughts/opinions with me <3. Overall, 4 creepy and compelling stars! Put this on your TBR! :) Thank you to Netgalley, Crown Publishing, and C.J Tudor for an advanced arc in exchange for an honest review. Expected publication date is 1/9/18.
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  • Lindsay
    January 1, 1970
    4 stars! This was a highly suspenseful, intriguing, creepy and mysterious thriller.This novel caught my attention from the prologue and I found myself growing more attached to this story as I turned each page. The characters were well-developed – some likeable, others not. Each character had an element of mystery about them which I really enjoyed. My suspicions were flip-flopping all over the place trying to determine what had happened and how things would all end. The author did a fantastic job 4 stars! This was a highly suspenseful, intriguing, creepy and mysterious thriller.This novel caught my attention from the prologue and I found myself growing more attached to this story as I turned each page. The characters were well-developed – some likeable, others not. Each character had an element of mystery about them which I really enjoyed. My suspicions were flip-flopping all over the place trying to determine what had happened and how things would all end. The author did a fantastic job slowly revealing clues, secrets and lies which kept the suspense high and pace flowing. I really enjoyed the mysterious and puzzling references surrounding ‘the chalk man’ throughout this entire book. It was a unique and clever piece of the story.Overall, this was an additive, highly intriguing, suspenseful, fast-paced novel that I would definitely recommend! This was a Traveling Sister Read with Brenda, Norma, Diane, Rita, Susanne and Melisa. It was a great book choice for us as we all ended up loving it! We look forward to the next novel from this author - C. J. Tudor!!A big thank you to NetGalley, Penguin Random House Canada and C. J. Tudor for an ARC in exchange for an honest review!Expected Date of Publication: January 9th, 2018.To find this review, along with the other Traveling Sister Read reviews, please visit Brenda and Norma’s fabulous blog at:https://twogirlslostinacouleereading....
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  • Carol (Bookaria)
    January 1, 1970
    This is a great thriller!Eddie Munster, Metal Mickey, Fat Gav, Hoppo and Nicky are close friends in 1986, they are twelve years old and go to school together. They come up with a secret code using chalk and use it to communicate messages, calls to action, meetings and other fun things preteens do at that age. Then a murder happens to a beautiful young girl they all know and this event brings repercussions that change everybody's lives after that. The novel is narrated by Ed (Eddie) and alternate This is a great thriller!Eddie Munster, Metal Mickey, Fat Gav, Hoppo and Nicky are close friends in 1986, they are twelve years old and go to school together. They come up with a secret code using chalk and use it to communicate messages, calls to action, meetings and other fun things preteens do at that age. Then a murder happens to a beautiful young girl they all know and this event brings repercussions that change everybody's lives after that. The novel is narrated by Ed (Eddie) and alternates between 1986 and 2016. It takes place in Anderbury, a small English town and is told at a moderate pace. The story is chilling, engaging and mysteriously dark.The friendship that these kids have reminded me of the characters in the TV show Stranger Things , maybe because they are preteens and it takes place in the 80s.Overall I enjoyed reading this book and recommend it to all lovers of thrillers, mysteries and contemporary fiction.Thanks to NetGalley, the author C.J. Tudor, and Crown Publishing for providing me with a copy of this publication in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Norma
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars rounded up to 5 stars!This novel was the perfect Traveling Sisters Read which I read along with Brenda, Lindsay, Diane, Rita, Susanne and Melisa - which was an excellent choice to read for Halloween!THE CHALK MAN is a debut psychological thriller novel by C. J. TUDOR that is a chilling, suspenseful, gripping, and a spooky good read that had a sinister feel to it which had me flipping those pages as fast as I could to find out who or what was behind all those mysterious chalk men.   C. 4.5 stars rounded up to 5 stars!This novel was the perfect Traveling Sisters Read which I read along with Brenda, Lindsay, Diane, Rita, Susanne and Melisa - which was an excellent choice to read for Halloween!THE CHALK MAN is a debut psychological thriller novel by C. J. TUDOR that is a chilling, suspenseful, gripping, and a spooky good read that had a sinister feel to it which had me flipping those pages as fast as I could to find out who or what was behind all those mysterious chalk men.   C. J. TUDOR delivers a unique and cleverly written story here with realistic and well-developed characters that all brought a mysterious and interesting aspect to this story for me.  There is a constant sense of foreboding surrounding the whole idea of who or what the mysterious chalk men were or represented which did keep me puzzled and guessing throughout this whole story.The story flips between flashbacks from 1986 and present day of 2016 and I loved the younger voice of our main character, Eddie and really enjoyed how the story was told to us through his childhood eyes. I really enjoyed the interactions between Eddie and his childhood friends which kind of had a STAND BY ME vibe to it and I also really liked the references to the 80’s within the storyline.   Just a word of caution as there was one highly uncomfortable and disturbing bullying scene that took me a little by surprise but other than that one scene the author does a fantastic job at scaring you with words and not through graphic violent scenes. To sum it all up it was an enjoyable, fun, fast-paced, and an entertaining read which had that creepy good vibe going on without all the gory details. Would highly recommend!!Expected Date of Publication:   January 9th, 2018Thank you so much to NetGalley, Crown Publishing, and C. J. Tudor for the opportunity to read a copy of this book in exchange for a review.All of our Traveling Sisters Reviews can be found on our sister blog:http://www.twogirlslostinacouleereadi...
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  • Sue
    January 1, 1970
    THE CHALK MAN the psychological suspense debut by author C.J. Tudor, I predict is going to be one of the books for 2018…a brilliant piece of fiction, and the BEST THRILLER book I have read now in 2017! This novel will keep readers guessing right up to the shocking ending. I find it is very difficult to write this review, as I don’t think I could do any of it justice. It is a “Gem” waiting to be discovered! This is a coming of age creepy story, of a 12-year-old boy surrounded by misfortune and my THE CHALK MAN the psychological suspense debut by author C.J. Tudor, I predict is going to be one of the books for 2018…a brilliant piece of fiction, and the BEST THRILLER book I have read now in 2017! This novel will keep readers guessing right up to the shocking ending. I find it is very difficult to write this review, as I don’t think I could do any of it justice. It is a “Gem” waiting to be discovered! This is a coming of age creepy story, of a 12-year-old boy surrounded by misfortune and mystery. This novel has it all with believable characters that are fully fleshed out, and a plot that keeps on giving-the whodunnit aspect of the story is amazing, with clues released on a need-to-know basis. Wonderful story telling at it’s best.In 1986, Eddie and his friends are just kids on the verge of adolescence, and when new teacher Mr. Halloran came to town. They spend their days biking around their sleepy little 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. Please note: There is one highly uncomfortable bullying scene, but without a ton of graphic violence. In 2016, Eddie(Ed) 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.With alternating chapters from 1986 to 2016, and the story is told from Eddie's point of view, creating a focus point for these mysterious chalk drawings. Tudor creates a small town setting with an amazing set of characters: Eddie, Fat Gav, Nicky, Metal Mickey and Hoppo. Each character is unique and plays a definite role in the overall plot bound by mystery, lies and deceit. I really enjoyed the interactions between Eddie and his childhood friends which reminded me of STAND BY ME, with references to the 80’s within the storyline. This author C.J. Tudor has a fabulous way with words. There is so much depth and knowledge to this novel, that I found I escaped to another plane, and experienced my youth all over again. One particular quote I liked was from teacher, Mr. Halloran to Eddie, and one that I live by. “What goes around comes around.”“You do bad things and they’ll come back eventually and bite you in the backside. That boy will get his one day. You can be sure about that.”I also liked Ed’s quote on life:“My life has been defined by the things I didn’t do. The things I didn’t say. I think it’s the same for a lot of people. What shapes us is not always our achievements but our omissions. Not lies; simply the truths we don’t tell.”Once I finished the novel, I found myself thinking about my own childhood memories and how they were shaped. The surprise ending, I never saw coming. There was so much going on at the end, that my mind went into overdrive, and if anyone interrupted me, I would explode! I was a little bit overwhelmed and confused as there were so many questions running through my mind. A very satisfying read and one that I will not forget!My thanks to Crown Publishing via Net Galley for my copy.
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  • Shelby *trains flying monkeys*
    January 1, 1970
    2.5 starsIn 1986, Eddie and his 'gang' are typical neighborhood kids. They come up with an idea to leave each other 'codes' in chalk by drawing chalk men to let each other know things but keeping the adults and others out of their business. But someone else discovers their code and leaves chalk drawings that lead the kids to a dismembered body. Told from viewpoints of the 1986 timeline and present day, the story is seen through the eyes of Eddie aka Eddie Munster. In present day Eddie is all gro 2.5 starsIn 1986, Eddie and his 'gang' are typical neighborhood kids. They come up with an idea to leave each other 'codes' in chalk by drawing chalk men to let each other know things but keeping the adults and others out of their business. But someone else discovers their code and leaves chalk drawings that lead the kids to a dismembered body. Told from viewpoints of the 1986 timeline and present day, the story is seen through the eyes of Eddie aka Eddie Munster. In present day Eddie is all grown up and is pretty much a loner. He doesn't even hang out with his previous friends much anymore. Then a letter arrives for each of them featuring a chalk man drawing. +Then one of the 'gang' ends up dead. This book is being loved by most everyone that reads it. Honestly though? I've read much better. To me it's nothing I have not seen done many times before..and done better. I was going to just give it an even two star but the ending was pretty good and it bumped it up some. Booksource: Netgalley in exchange for review
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  • Karen❄️
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 for this one!A wonderfully written debut! Shock full of nightmares, terror, mystery,and murder.I love the interaction of the group of 12 yr olds we meet from 1986 (reminiscent of the Stand by Me kids).Every other chapter is from 1986, to present day being 2016, with chapter-ending cliffhangers. You will be completely taken in at the first page!Highly recommended!!Many thanks to NetGalley and Crown Publishing for the advanced reading!!
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  • Brenda
    January 1, 1970
    4.5 stars rounded up to 5 stars!Traveling Sisters review by Brenda with Norma, Lindsay, Diane, Rita, Susanne and MelisaThe Chalk Man is a dark, compelling, chilling and suspenseful psychological thriller that grabbed our attention right from the very start and held on right until the very last page. This one was a winner for all of us that we all thoroughly enjoyed and it brought some excitement into our discussion. C. J Tudor does a great job here creating some realistic and interesting well-de 4.5 stars rounded up to 5 stars!Traveling Sisters review by Brenda with Norma, Lindsay, Diane, Rita, Susanne and MelisaThe Chalk Man is a dark, compelling, chilling and suspenseful psychological thriller that grabbed our attention right from the very start and held on right until the very last page. This one was a winner for all of us that we all thoroughly enjoyed and it brought some excitement into our discussion. C. J Tudor does a great job here creating some realistic and interesting well-developed characters here with this very cleverly well-written story. There were a few things going on here with these characters that had us guessing at how they were connected to the mystery of this story. This created an interesting discussion throughout this one. The story alternates between the past and present as we learn how the past catches up to our main character Eddie. We all loved the chapter-ending cliffhangers that really added to the suspense of the story. We also really enjoyed the references to the 80’s within the storyline and loved the gang of kids riding around on their bikes to see what excitement they can get themselves into and it brought back a sense of time for some of us to the days we grew up and gave us a warm feeling. However, that’s where the warm feeling ended as there were some not so innocent things going on in this small village leaving us guessing what secrets and evil is lurking right up to the end. It is worth mentioning that there is one highly uncomfortable bullying scene that disturbed us all. Other than that, we found it was the way the author had the ability to scare and creep us out with words without a whole lot of all the gory details for that we applaud her and we found that is a nice change from your typical thriller. We highly recommend Expected Date of Publication: January 9th, 2018Thank you so much to NetGalley, Crown Publishing, and C. J. Tudor for the opportunity to read a copy of this book in exchange for a review.Traveling Sisters Reviews can be found on our sister blog:http://www.twogirlslostinacouleereadi...
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  • Dem
    January 1, 1970
    What a stunning cover and I am a sucker for a good book cover . This is why I still favour paperbacks over Kindle or Audio. I enjoyed having this book on my bedside locker as the cover screams Read Me . Ok ! enough about the Book Cover, did the story live up to its quirky cover?............................YES, YES, YES ! . This one held my attention throughout and I really did enjoy this twisty, dark and suspenseful thriller and as a debut novel this one really does pack a punch and C. J. Tudor What a stunning cover and I am a sucker for a good book cover . This is why I still favour paperbacks over Kindle or Audio. I enjoyed having this book on my bedside locker as the cover screams Read Me . Ok ! enough about the Book Cover, did the story live up to its quirky cover?............................YES, YES, YES ! . This one held my attention throughout and I really did enjoy this twisty, dark and suspenseful thriller and as a debut novel this one really does pack a punch and C. J. Tudor is certainly an author to watch in the future.image: " Looking back, it all started on the day of the fair and the terrible accident. When twelve year old Eddie first met the Chalk Man. It was the Chalk Man who gave Eddie the idea for the drawings a way to leave secret messages between his group of friends. And it was fun to start with until the figures led them to the body of a young girl "The novel is set in two time frames 1986 and 2016 and this work well as the suspense created at the beginning of the novel continues throughout. The colourful and complicated characters are well drawn if a little confusing at times with all the childhood nicknames but once I got them straight in my head I found the whole idea quirky and unique and really enjoyed this suspenseful read. I did especially like the ending of the novel.............Recommended to readers who enjoy thriller/crime novels.My thanks to Penguin for The BEAUTIFUL copy of this novel in return for an honest review.
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  • Fran
    January 1, 1970
    Anderbury in Southern England was a small picturesque town with cobbled streets. Its accessibility to beaches and forest life created seasonal festivities. How awesome to be allowed at age twelve to go to the fair without a parental unit, thought Eddie Adams. Eddie's fun ended when he witnessed an horrific accident. A carriage on the Waltzer ride uncoupled, whether through overuse or lack of maintenance. The impact disfigured a beautiful girl. Normalcy never returned to the lives of Eddie and hi Anderbury in Southern England was a small picturesque town with cobbled streets. Its accessibility to beaches and forest life created seasonal festivities. How awesome to be allowed at age twelve to go to the fair without a parental unit, thought Eddie Adams. Eddie's fun ended when he witnessed an horrific accident. A carriage on the Waltzer ride uncoupled, whether through overuse or lack of maintenance. The impact disfigured a beautiful girl. Normalcy never returned to the lives of Eddie and his gang of four friends.Eddie had a chaotic home life living with a mum who was a doctor in an abortion clinic and a dad, a writer who worked from home. Eddie was a collector, occasionally stealing small items to add to his stash. His collection was hidden from view which gave him a feeling of control. Fat Gav was the loud, obnoxious, heart-of-gold, son of a pub owner. Metal Mickey was so called because he wore braces on his teeth, He seemed to have a cold, ugly demeanor. Hoppo was easy going but was not the brightest bulb in the room. Rounding out the group was one girl, Nicky, the red haired, freckle faced, cursing and swearing daughter of the town vicar. When the Waltzer Carriage accident occurred, Eddie was supported and befriended by Mr. Halloran, a new teacher in Anderbury. Mr. Halloran was a very tall, very pale, albino man.Fat Gav was the last group member to turn twelve. His parents created a "happening", a birthday bash with invitations extended to both children and adults. Eddie noticed that one wrapped present had escaped notice and brought it to Gav's attention. Gav unwrapped a large tub of chalk. Mr. Halloran told of his childhood use of chalk to render secret symbols that only he and his friends understood. A fun code could be created by Eddie and Co. Each friend would have a different color chalk to use to leave messages for the others. These stick figure messages, if manipulated, could lead to mystery and murder."The Chalk Man" is a debut novel written by C.J.Tudor. I can't say enough about how much I enjoyed the fleshed out characters created. There was humor, mystery, blood and gore. A fast paced read that hooked me from the get-go. The twists and turns spiraled to a surprise ending! I anxiously await C.J. Tudor's sophomore tome.Thank you Crown Publishing and Net Galley for the opportunity to read and review "The Chalk Man".
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  • Erin Clemence
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a free, electronic ARC in exchange for an honest review. “The Chalk Man” by CJ Tudor has many similarities to Stephen King’s “It”. The story starts with four young boys and a girl who stumble across something grotesque, and spend the remainder of their lives haunted by it and searching for answers. But don’t worry folks, there is no clown hiding in sewers in this one. Just a few really odd old men and a plethora of chalk figures. Eddie and his Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for providing a free, electronic ARC in exchange for an honest review. “The Chalk Man” by CJ Tudor has many similarities to Stephen King’s “It”. The story starts with four young boys and a girl who stumble across something grotesque, and spend the remainder of their lives haunted by it and searching for answers. But don’t worry folks, there is no clown hiding in sewers in this one. Just a few really odd old men and a plethora of chalk figures. Eddie and his friends draw chalk figures for each other to convey special, secret messages. One day, these chalk figures lead the friends to a dismembered body. Years later, the friends are still haunted by the discovery even though the presumed killer has long since been dead. When Eddie receives a haunting chalk figure in the mail, and one of his old friends turns up dead, Eddie begins the hunt for the real “chalk” killer. Tudor tells this story from Eddie’s perspective and alternates time periods- when Eddie was a young adolescent and the body was discovered, and when Eddie is an adult living on his own and scarred by his memories and haunted dreams. I appreciate why Tudor wrote in this fashion and although I am never really a huge fan of novels being written this way, this one was less choppy and confusing than other novels of this format, and I wasn’t off put by the back and forth as much as I usually am. There were a lot of creepy characters in this novel, but the identity of the “Chalk Man” was easy to guess from the beginning. However, Tudor did throw a lot of extra twists in the plot that were unpredictable and unexpected. The characters were likable and the novel was both addicting and super easy to read, making it really hard to put down. Overall, the writing, characters and plot earned this novel a 4 star rating. The predictability and resemblance to “It” (during a time when “It” has increased its popularity sevenfold) were its only downfalls. Definitely spooky and gory, this novel has all the markings of a gruesome horror read. Recommended for any and all readers of the creepy, bloody and downright “keep you up at night” genre.
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  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    Back in 1986 Eddie and his friends were typical kids always looking for something new to do to entertain themselves. They spent their time biking around the town and avoiding the bullies in the neighborhood that summer. The group came up with a secret code using chalk figures that they used to communicate until the day that same chalk led them to a dead body. Now Eddie and his friends are adults and have put the past behind them until one day Eddie gets a letter with a chalk figure on it. Contac Back in 1986 Eddie and his friends were typical kids always looking for something new to do to entertain themselves. They spent their time biking around the town and avoiding the bullies in the neighborhood that summer. The group came up with a secret code using chalk figures that they used to communicate until the day that same chalk led them to a dead body. Now Eddie and his friends are adults and have put the past behind them until one day Eddie gets a letter with a chalk figure on it. Contacting his old buddies he finds that they have received the same and wonder if it's a prank until one of them turns up dead. It soon becomes apparent to find out what is going on now they need to take a look at just what happened in the past. The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor is a thriller read that almost immediately reminded me of stories I've read by Stephen King so it didn't take me long to become engrossed in this novel. The story is told by alternating the chapters between current time with Eddie as an adult and flashing back to 1986 when he and his friends were kids. The flashing back to the eighties also was a favorite of mine really bringing that era to life. The story was easy to follow along with on both timelines as the guessing begins as to what happened in either. I would warn though that there was a scene in the past that was rather cringe worthy and graphic that may bother some readers, almost needing a rape warning for it. This story was one that makes me think of the comparison to an onion in which you need to peel back the layers to find out the truth and what had happened. It kept me quite engaged with the characters and crimes to be solved all throughout with a twinge of horror mixed in the thrilling tale. In the end I'd rate this at 4.5 stars and I'd definitely recommend checking this one out. I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.wordpress....
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  • Zoeytron
    January 1, 1970
    Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review.A simple box of colored chalk. The magic contained inside is limited only by the range of imagination of the one using it. In Old Meadows Park, there is an empty playground which appears strangely dark even in the bright sunshine. It's all fun and games until the body of a young girl is found in the nearby woods. Eddie, Mickey, Hoppo, and Gavin are 12 years old in the summer of 1986 and they are about to start learning some of the facts of l Copy furnished by Net Galley for the price of a review.A simple box of colored chalk. The magic contained inside is limited only by the range of imagination of the one using it. In Old Meadows Park, there is an empty playground which appears strangely dark even in the bright sunshine. It's all fun and games until the body of a young girl is found in the nearby woods. Eddie, Mickey, Hoppo, and Gavin are 12 years old in the summer of 1986 and they are about to start learning some of the facts of life. For one thing, don't assume (we all know why). For another, there is not much you can do about crazy. It comes out the winner every time.(view spoiler)[I got a kick out of a conversation between two of the characters while they were standing in a cemetery. They were discussing "plot holes" even as a coffin was being lowered into an empty one behind them. Ironically, this was not the type of plot hole under discussion. There is some sly humor going on there. Fantastic! (hide spoiler)]
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  • Pauline
    January 1, 1970
    The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor was an excellent thriller that I found addictive. I could not put down and I read it in one day. The story was creepy and full of suspense. The characters were interesting and likeable. I am eagerly awaiting more books from this author. I would like to thank NetGalley and Penguin UK - Michael Joseph for my e-copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Debra
    January 1, 1970
    "And it felt good, to confess."Confession is good for the soul they say...but then again there are characters in this book who would disagree. Who feel the complete opposite. Who believe that well, "sometimes......it's better not to know all the answers." But we do learn the answers in this psychological/suspense thriller. I'll be entirely honest, when I first began reading this book I thought "what is all the fuss about?" I thought the first chapter or so was dull. All I can say is, if you feel "And it felt good, to confess."Confession is good for the soul they say...but then again there are characters in this book who would disagree. Who feel the complete opposite. Who believe that well, "sometimes......it's better not to know all the answers." But we do learn the answers in this psychological/suspense thriller. I'll be entirely honest, when I first began reading this book I thought "what is all the fuss about?" I thought the first chapter or so was dull. All I can say is, if you feel the same way I did when you first pick up this book, KEEP READING. Things got interesting fast.This book flips back and forth between 1986 and 2016. Going back and forth in time used to really annoy me as did differing POV chapters. Either Authors have master how to do this or I have surrendered myself to this story telling device. Either way, I found this really worked in this book in the unraveling of the story. So What is the story?In 1986, Eddie and his friends (Fat Gav, Hoppo, "Metal" Mickey, and Nicky) draw chalk men, they use them as their secret code that only they understand. They each have their own color and leave messages for each other about meeting up, etc. Then one day thy discover a chalk figure that points the way to a grisly discovery in the woods: A local teenager, Elisa, has been dismembered. Elisa is the young woman who Eddie helped save at the carnival after a moving piece fell off a ride and landed on Elisa. Eddie and the new teacher in town, Mr. Halloran helped save her life and became local heroes in the process. Who would have wanted to kill Elisa and why?Flash forward to 2016, Eddie still lives in his childhood home and is a teacher at the local school. He has taken on a lodger and is happily unhappy living his life and drinking a little too much. Then he receives a letter in the mail. A letter which changes everything....The letter contains a chalk stick figure. He then learns that all of his friends have received the same letter. Has the past come back to haunt them?"An ADULT is only an illusion. When it comes down to it I'm not sure any of us really grow up. We simply grtow taller and hairier. Sometimes, I still feel amazed that I am allowed to drive a car...."One of his friends comes back to town and then turns up dead. The letter was no prank. Who could have been behind it? Why? They only found the body, they had nothing to do with the teen girls murder. Eddie decides that it is time to look into the past. Try and put the pieces together. Time to determine who is responsible.This book may have started slow for me but it built...and when I say it built I mean EVERYTHING built. The suspense built, the plot and subplots built, the suspense built, the revealing built. The story came together so flawlessly that it was actually quite brilliant. There was more than one "AHA" moments in this book. Truths both large and small are revealed. It was brilliant and I have to say that I am really surprised that this is a debut novel. I have not been this impressed sine I read "The Summer that Melted Everything". This book also has a bit of a nostalgic feel to it. By going back and forth from childhood to adult hood this book had a "IT" and "Stand by Me" feel to it. The teens deal with bullying, parental issues, anger, death, family secrets, etc. C.J. Tudor really pulled off the Nostalgia aspect of this book quite seamlessly. How one event experienced in childhood, can not only change a person but change friendships forever. Tragedy can either pull people closer together or tear them apart.As I mentioned there are other sub-plots going on in this book as well. This makes for a very interesting read. Plus, they all blend together and make for a captivating read. I loved when the "aha" moments and revelations were revealed. They all seemed to come at just the right time to keep the pages turning and the story moving. If this is C.J. Tudor's first book, I can't wait to read the next!I received an ARC of this book from Crown Publishing and NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Thank you for making the book available for me to read and review.See more of my reviews at www.openbookpost.com
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