The Hidden Girl: A Novel

The Hidden Girl: A Novel

3.3 3
by Louise Millar

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From "a writer to watch," this gripping psychological thriller follows a young woman who uncovers a decades-old secret in her idyllic suburban neighborhood—but who will believe her?


Hannah Riley and her musician husband, Will, hope that a move to the countryside will provide a fresh start.

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From "a writer to watch," this gripping psychological thriller follows a young woman who uncovers a decades-old secret in her idyllic suburban neighborhood—but who will believe her?


Hannah Riley and her musician husband, Will, hope that a move to the countryside will provide a fresh start. Hannah is desperate for a baby, and she hopes that this new life will allow her to realize her dream of adopting a child . . . and revitalize her marriage. Yet when the worst snowstorm in years comes to Suffolk, Will is working in London and Hannah is cut off in their remote village, obsessively scrambling to turn the tumbledown manor into the perfect refuge for a child. Life in Tornley proves to be far from idyllic, however. Hannah has spent her professional life doing the right thing for other people. As she starts to uncover a terrible crime, she realizes she can no longer do that without putting everything she's ever wanted at risk. But if Hannah does nothing, the next victim could be her . . .

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
In this intriguing psychological thriller from British author Millar (Accidents Happen), Hannah and her musician husband, Will, move from London to a remote Suffolk village. Hannah feels an enormous amount of pressure to get the house in order quickly, because her hopes of adopting a child turn on a bureaucrat’s approval of her new home. When Will heads back to London for work, Hannah winds up snowed in, with spotty cell service. Over a wintry few days, she begins to realize that the villagers are “hiding something” about a local woman named Elvie. Meanwhile in nippy London, Will, a particularly sympathetic and nuanced character, wonders if living with Hannah “in the middle of nowhere” is for him. Can Hannah get to the bottom of the Elvie mystery without jeopardizing her dreams of family life? Her obsession with the adoption is at times laid on with a heavy trowel, but that is a small flaw in a generally emotionally compelling novel. (Aug.)
Book Fairie
“The author has done a good job of thinking this story out and making all the pieces come together. There's an underlying horror in these pages, and it's a good read.”
Book Hooked Blog
“Millar does a great job of building slow, psychological suspense... I highly recommend that you give this one a try,”
Always with a Book
“A really good book! It's addictive and kept me glued to the pages wanting to know how it all ends.”
Booklist (starred review)
"As Millar makes truth elusive and builds suspense, she is establishing herself in the top tier of writers of psychological thrillers."
Alex Marwood
"This seriously creepy psychological thriller set deep in the Suffolk countryside is Louise Millar's best book yet. With a twist I did not see coming, it will make urbanites dreaming of bucolic bliss think again."
Lisa Jewell
“Taut, chilling and utterly brilliant- my thriller of the year.”
“Millar turns the typically cozy village setting into something malevolent, generating considerable suspense in the process and adding a psychological thriller element reminiscent of Ruth Rendell.”
New York Times bestselling author of The Weight of Silence - Heather Gudenkauf
"Louise Millar’s Accidents Happen is everything I hope for in a suspenseful read – chilling, complex and intense. Millar’s riveting novel,with its frightening premise and twists and turns kept me frantically turning pages late into the night."
Reader to Reader
“Louise Millar possesses an awesome talent for penning menacing tales. THE HIDDEN GIRL is a tightly penned thriller with fully fleshed out characters, interesting and intelligent dialogue, and stellar plotting.”

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Product Details

Atria/Emily Bestler Books
Publication date:
Sales rank:
Product dimensions:
5.30(w) x 8.20(h) x 1.20(d)

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Read an Excerpt



They are coming.

They are on their way.

I can taste them in the air like sand in sea wind.

Starlings flit, a handful of stones thrown at the sky.

A plane swims through the clouds towards Ipswich.

“The apples fall down one by one

And with a crack they hit the ground

And with one chop, a head falls free

Under the rotten apple tree”

I lie on the floor and wait.

I stretch my arms above my head, and push my feet far away.

I try to push them all the way to China.

“The apples fall down two by two

And roll under my leather shoe

And with one chop, a head falls free

Under the rotten apple tree”

If I could touch both sides of this room, I would be a giant.

I know what a giant would do.

A giant would wait till they came.

Then it would lift up its feet and do this . . .


Meet the Author

Louise Millar began her journalism career in various music and film magazines and spent seven years at Marie Claire as senior editor and contributing editor. She has written for Mojo, Marie Claire, Red, Psychologies, The Independent, Glamour, and The Guardian, among others. She lives in London with her husband and daughters.

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The Hidden Girl 3.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 3 reviews.
BasingstoneBook More than 1 year ago
If all escapes to the country were as eventful as this one, people would only be living in cities. A slow burner which has you guessing for some time but keeps you hooked. From the start Hannah and Will's move to the remote Suffolk countryside of his youth is filled with mystery, why leave a good job for this house, who is Barbara and why is she visiting? Then there is the mysterious tall figure lumbering in front of Will's car. All of these events are not explained until later but the help build the tension. Louise Millar the author gradually builds up this tension bit by bit until Hannah starts to question her sanity, and then it explodes into action. This is not your normal murder mystery thriller, but is does have murder, mystery and it thrills.
sneps More than 1 year ago
Great Thriller! This is a psychological thriller, that is definitely a mystery and can drive the protagonist mad! Will and Hannah are married, and have been unable to have a baby. After countless IVF’s and other fertility treatments, they decide adoption is their best option to expanding their family. What is typical for couples: rather than grieve their inability to have a biological child, they immediately venture into the world of adoption, without even talking about where they are as a couple. As a result, Will is a bit put off by the huge move they make into the country, which will make his commute 4 hours!! I know….I wouldn’t do it either! However, after a failed adoption attempt, Hannah is determined to make sure everything is perfect and feels having a house (rather their apartment) will increase their chances to having a child. Sadly, Will is really distant (literally), upset about the move, and missed the “old” Hannah. Hannah is hyper-focused on fixing up their new home, which needs a lot of work. Due to heavy snows (think “The Shining”), Hannah is left alone in a desolate area, where she has to fix the house and repair many things, too! Will, on the other hand, is stranded at work. Really, though, he is connecting with an office mate, and making great music. With lots of strange happenings, and people who reminded me of the town in “Children of the Corn”, Hannah has to solve the mysteries happening in and around her home. She has strange neighbors, who all have their own agenda, and a “ghost” who has an agenda, too. I enjoyed the book and storyline, but found myself so frustrated for Hannah. I always tell people that if an author can make me detest an unlikeable character, then she did her job…and Louise Millar certainly nails this one! I found Will to be uncaring, very self-centered, and selfish. Understanding he was dealing with the failed adoption in his own way, he still made me so angry! I really wanted a different ending for Hannah because of how brave and strong she is. However, it is their dream to have a family and their relationship can overcome. I would have liked the book to have been longer, so that we could see how Hannah and Will deal with their relationship and come together to decide how to move forward. Nonetheless, it’s a fast past paced novel, lots of mysteries to uncover, and a great book that kept me up late at night because I was determined to know how it all ends!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
If you want to know the actual contents\description for this book, you will need to read the readers reviews.