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Hidden - Emma Kavanagh

A shooter is on the prowl in a Swansea hospital. Why does he keep lurking outside Ward 12. Is he linked to one of the patients, a boy involved in a shooting a year previously. Does his presence have anything to do with the tragic death of a nurse from the same ward?


The book opens with the immediate bloody outcome of a shooting in the hospital. Amongst the dead and injured we are introduced to Charlie, a reporter at the local paper, and Aden, a police marksman. As the story continues we go through the days leading up to the shooting.


Each chapter is told from the view point of a different character; Charlie, Aden, psychologist Imogen and the unidentified shooter. As we progress through the story more details emerge as to how the characters are all linked.


Each character gives definition to the story. Not one is out of place. You feel for and have definite feelings for each person. For example I loved Charlie, Imogen and Aden, though all are flawed in their own way. I disliked Mara with as much passion.  The characters are so well drawn that even the absent ones add layers to the story. As I read I absorbed clues, sifting through hints and conversations, discarding some, hoarding others so I could beat the reveal to discover who the shooter was.


Emma Kavanagh is a trained psychologist, having worked with the police during her career. Her insights into how a person's past and how little random decisions can have a lasting effect echoes throughout this superb novel.


I loved Falling, Emma Kavanagh's debut novel. With Hidden I feel she has taken it to the next level. Emma Kavanagh is bound to be a leading light in psychological thriller authors.


This is gripping, compulsive read. If her next book is half as good as this one it will be a cracking read.