The Chalk Man

by C. J. Tudor

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The Chalk Man Synopsis

You can feel it in the woods, in the school and in the playground; you can feel it in the houses and at the fairground. You can feel it in most places in the small town of Anderbury . . . the fear that something or someone is watching you.

It began back in 1986, at the fair, on the day of the accident. That was when twelve-year-old Eddie met Mr Halloran - the Chalk Man. He gave Eddie the idea for the drawings: a way to leave secret messages for his friends and it was fun, until the chalk men led them to a body.

Thirty years later, Ed believes the past is far behind him, until an envelope slips through the letterbox. It contains a stick of chalk, and a drawing of a figure. Is history going to repeat itself? Was it ever really over? Will this game only end in the same way?

About This Edition

ISBN: 9781405930956
Publication date: 23rd August 2018
Author: C. J. Tudor
Publisher: Penguin Books Ltd
Format: Paperback
Pagination: 368 pages
Primary Genre Crime and Mystery
Other Genres:
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C. J. Tudor Press Reviews

 If you like my stuff, you'll like this -- STEPHEN KING

Completely engrossing. Puts me in mind of Stephen King's The Body -- JOHN BOYNE

Wonderfully creepy - like a cold blade on the back of your neck -- LEE CHILD

The past rises from the chalk dust. A labyrinthine tale that kept me guessing right to the end -- VAL MCDERMID - The Mail on Sunday

This assured debut is very much in the Stephen King vein - creepy with plenty of menace - The Guardian

Half horror, half crime, The Chalk Man is a creepy, compulsive novel - Red Online

A striking debut - Sunday Times

The Chalk Man works, it's a lively and entertaining read . . . Tudor's got talent - The Times

Taut, twisty and very creepy, this is a must for anyone who enjoys psycho-thrillers . . . The ending is genius - Saga

You'll be gripped by this cracking debut novel . . . it will keep you up all night with all the lights on. This intriguing, satisfying thriller delivers a series of shocks . . . reminiscent of the master of horror Stephen King - Daily Express

Deliciously creepy with a side order of Eighties nostalgia -- Thrillers We Love - Good Housekeeping

Started and finished in one day. Absolutely gripping, chilling, and as creepy as that house with dark windows we all knew as kids. Brilliant read and can't wait for the next one! - Luca Veste, author of the Murphy & Rossi novels

A well-constructed thriller layered with secrets, suspense, twists, turns and an outcome you may not see coming - Choice Magazine

It is hard to believe The Chalk Man is the debut novel from C J Tudor. The writing is sublime, and the ending is spine-tinglingly chilling - The Sun

This insanely readable chiller has it all - a brilliant, nostalgic flavour, humour and heart . . . A fantastic debut from a major new talent. - The Sunday Mirror

Strong characterisation, plenty of plot twists and an evocative portrait of small-town life in the 1980s add up to a riveting read - The Guardian

The prose is punk, the pace fast and the plot sinewy. There are shades of Stephen King when the reality bends into the sinister, and a deliciously creepy finale . . . - Daily Mail

The novel is so well executed . . . Tudor is very good at deploying shocks and surprises that catch you off guard. I jumped so many times while reading I could have been sitting on a chair made of cactus - The Sunday Express

A must-read for all horror fans - Daily Express

A tense gripper with a leave-the-lights-on shock ending - Sunday Times Crime Club

Thriller of the Week - an intriguing puzzle with an engaging cast of characters . . . a highly promising debut - The Mail on Sunday

There are enough twists and turns in this dark debut thriller to tie you in knots. The end is fabulously surprising and satisfying . . . creepy - The Sunday Post

[CJ Tudor] creates a winningly dark atmosphere and serves up a beautifully timed stream of intriguing new plot elements - Readers Digest

A nail-biting thriller - Inside Soap

Book of the Month - Prizes Magazine

A compelling debut - Mail Online

Scare yourself silly with this brilliant chiller . . . a spine-tingling read - Best

One of the best suspense thrillers i've read. A very easy 5 big fat stars and 100% recommended -- Is The Chalk Man one of THE books of 2018? YES, YES YES IT REALLY IS . . . an absolute corker, a spine tingling read -- Pageturnersnook A fantastic debut novel to keep you up late at night -- BookLiterati A nail biting thriller - Inside Soap

It's a corker that'll give you the willies. Chalk one up to C J Tudor. - Sunday Sport

Genuinely creepy books don't come along very often, but this one can hold its missing head up high - Heat

[I] haven't had a sleepless night due to a book for a long time. The Chalk Man changed that. Many congrats C. J. Tudor -- Fiona Barton - bestselling author of The Widow

What a great book. A twisty thriller and downright creepy ending. 5 stars. -- Sarah Pinborough, the number 1 bestselling author of - Behind Her Eyes

Tense, skillful storytelling -- Ali Land, bestselling author of - Good Me Bad Me

Absolutely brilliant. I was expecting a creepy horror story that I'd have to read with all the lights on but this book is so much more than that - it's witty, insightful, clever, thoughtful, mysterious, gripping, nostalgic and utterly compelling. Publishers often talk about an exciting new voice in fiction and I genuinely think C. J. Tudor is going to be huge. This book has bestseller written all over it and if it doesn't go to number one I will eat my crime writing hat -- C. L. Taylor - author of The Missing

What an amazing debut! Such an ingenious, original idea. I was engrossed from the very first page. I loved how the 1986 and present day storylines weaved so skilfully together to create that unforgettable and unexpected ending. Compelling, taut and so very, very chilling. This book will haunt you! -- Claire Douglas - Sunday Times bestselling author of Last Seen Alive

It's been a while since I've read such an impressive debut. The pace was perfectly judged, the characters superbly drawn and there's a creeping sense of unease that starts with the prologue and grows throughout the book. And then that ending! It feels so fresh and deserves to be a huge success -- James Oswald - Sunday Times bestselling author of the Inspector McLean series

Utterly Hypnotic. The Chalk Man is a dream novel, a book of nightmares: haunted and haunting, shot through with shadow and light - a story to quicken the pulse and freeze the blood. A dark star is born -- Mr A. J. Finn Impossible to put down, cleverly constructed and executed -- Ragnar Jonasson - author of the bestselling Dark Iceland series

Kept me up until five in the morning. Wonderfully written. I loved it! -- Kimberley Chambers - bestselling author of Backstabber

I absolutely loved The Chalk Man . . . It's a dark, mesmerising thriller with an ending that left me with goosebumps! -- Nuala Elwood - author of My Sister's Bones

One of the best books I've read since I first read Stephen King's IT when I was 14. Go get it! -- Rachel Burton - author of The Many Colours of Us

I've just finished The Chalk Man by C. J. Tudor. WOW! I could not put it down. If you like Stephen King, you'll LOVE this! -- Hayley Barker - author of Showstopper

At the heart of this accomplished debut lies a shocking crime stumbled upon by a group of teenage friends. It is a discovery that shatters their innocence and haunts the whole community. Now, twenty years later, someone is sending anonymous letters - chalk drawings of a stick figure with a noose around its neck - someone who hasn't forgotten what happened in the woods all those years ago. The past is very much alive in this book where memory is unreliable and old secrets fester, threatening to turn as odorous as a rotting corpse. Tudor's sharp eye for detail and ear for dialogue lend the childhood scenes an immediacy and authenticity that completely convince. With its driving plot and sensitive evocation of friendship and loneliness, The Chalk Man is an utterly gripping read, with an ending that will make the hairs on the back of your neck bristle -- Karen Perry - bestselling author of Can You Keep a Secret?

Just finished The Chalk Man. Dark and addictive. This page-turner is more twisty than a rollercoaster. And one hell of a ride. -- Will Dean - Dark Pines

The Chalk Man is a stunning debut, a riveting thriller about the powerful grip of the past and the unbreakable bonds of childhood friendship. The ending of this smasher will completely throw you for a loop -- David Bell, bestselling author - Bring Her Home

The Chalk Man is an intricate and surprising book that will reward the reader who approaches it with the attention it deserves -- Thomas Perry, New York Times bestselling author of - The Old Man

Absolutely loved it! Creepy, brilliant and tense, I could not put it down! -- Karen Hamilton - The Perfect Girlfriend

Blasted through this beauty in one intense and thrilling sitting -- S R Masters - The Killer You Know

The Chalk Man stole my weekend! Wow. Just wow. The tension just builds and builds. And what a final page . . . -- Simon Lelic - The House

Finished reading The Chalk Man by C.J Tudor last night. What a book! Enjoyed every minute of it. A total banger! -- Amy Lloyd - author of The Innocent Wife

C.J. Tudor brilliantly weaves past and present into a haunting, vividly imagined tale. Much more than a murder mystery, it is a sharp, terrifying exploration of the bonds and limitations of childhood friendships and of secrets that refuse to remain buried. I fell in love with the guiding voice of this novel, the thoughtful and solitary Eddie. Prepare to be surprised again and again, even until the final page -- Michelle Richmond, author of - The Marriage Pact

The Chalk Man is an unpredictable and engaging thriller: sinister, tragic, and with a beautifully rendered sense of time and place. That final page still haunts me -- Helen Callaghan, bestselling author of - Dear Amy

The grip the past has on the present reveals itself in ever more sinister and macabre ways in this utterly original and relentlessly compelling psychological thriller. The Chalk Man kept me guessing all the way to the end -- Fiona Neil - bestselling author of The Betrayals

As well as being unputdownable, it was emotionally intelligent, touching and credible -- Emma Curtis - author of One Little Mistake

Easy, gripping and enjoyable -- Cecelia Ahern - bestselling author of P.S. I Love You

Other editions of this book

ISBN: 9781405930956
Publication date: 23/08/2018
Format: Paperback

ISBN: 9781445071053
Publication date: 01/02/2018
Format: Audiobook

ISBN: 9780718187439
Publication date: 11/01/2018
Format: Hardback

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About C. J. Tudor

C. J. Tudor was born in Salisbury and grew up in Nottingham, where she still lives with her partner and young daughter. Her love of writing, especially the dark and macabre, started young. When her peers were reading Judy Blume, she was devouring Stephen King and James Herbert. Over the years she has had a variety of jobs, including trainee reporter, radio scriptwriter, dog walker, voiceover artist, television presenter, copywriter and, now, author. Her first novel, The Chalk Man, was a Sunday Times bestseller and sold in thirty-nine territories.

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