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  • ★★-2.5

Review: The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor (Spoiler-Free)

This was not what I thought it was going to be. I'm not sure why, but I had it in my head that this was a serial killer story. It isn't. And that's on me. I've read another C.J. Tudor before, The Drift, and I really enjoyed my time with it, so I was excited to dive into another one of her works. While both books start off slow, The Drift has a show-stopping second half. This book... not so much. I'll admit I was much more engaged in the second half of this story, but the reveals did absolutely nothing for me. Were they unexpected? Sure, but because of the way the story unfolds they don't feel very important. The alternating timeline, while providing good cliffhangers between chapters, ultimately makes the narrative feel longer and the twists less earned. The chapters are lengthy, so I kept forgetting the mystery I'd been waiting for in the previous one. All that being said, the writing is interesting and I was entertained throughout the majority of the second half. Fans of Stephen King would likely appreciate the writing style, though I can't help but feel that this book is essentially King's The Body bloated up with 100 excess pages. Also, if you're interested in reading this book, DO NOT READ THE SYNOPSIS. Seriously. It spoils events that don't happen until HALFWAY through the entire book. I'll keep my eye on Tudor's upcoming releases, but it'll take an irresistible premise to convince me I need to read one.


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