Review: Hidden by Emma Kavanagh

Hidden - Emma Kavanagh

Publication Date: 23rd April 2015 (HB), 5th November 2015 (PB)


Publisher: Century (HB), Arrow (PB)


ISBN: 978-1780892047 (HB), 978-0099588535 (PB)


Source: NetGalley, via publisher


Rating: 4.5*



A gripping psychological thriller by a former police psychologist. Perfect for fans of Nicci French, Tana French and S. J. Watson.



A gunman is stalking the wards of a local hospital. He's unidentified and dangerous, and has to be located. Urgently.


Police Firearms Officer Aden McCarthy is tasked with tracking him down. Still troubled by the shooting of a schoolboy, Aden is determined to make amends by funding the gunman - before it's too late.



To psychologist Imogen, hospital should be a place of healing and safety - both for her, and her young niece who's been recently admitted. She's heard about the gunman, but he has little to do with her. Or has he?


As time ticks down, no-one knows who the gunman's next target will be. But he's there. Hiding in plain sight. Far closer than anyone thinks...



A plethora of complex characters and a distinctive writing style really make this novel stand out. The author's extensive work experience is evident on every page, in the gritty detailing and the psychological insights.


The timeline flits around, which is slightly confusing, but this doesn't detract from the plot. Hidden is a slick, well maintained novel full of suspense and crammed with fear. Each character is inextricably wound into the plot, each playing an essential role. The descriptive detailing is fantastic, so you get to know all the main players really well. There are red herrings galore, so when the identity of the gunman is finally revealed, it comes as a real shock. 


Hidden had me reading until well into the early hours - I finished it at 2.45am after a mammoth reading session! It's a real page turner filled with action. I'm so looking forward to reading more by Emma Kavanagh.


What author Emma Kavanagh says about Hidden:

'For ten years, I trained the police forces and military units on the psychology of life-threatening incidents.


For me, writing and psychology are not that dissimilar. When a character comes face to face with an event that is so shocking that it will change the shape of their life to come, it is almost certain that it will not affect them alone. In Hidden, the crime comes from one stress too many and a reaction that causes death and destruction.


In my former career, my main area of focus was firearms incidents and my experiences inform the way I write and, I hope, allow me to bring a sense of reality to the lives of my characters. Hidden is a story incredibly close to my heart and I very much hope that you enjoy reading it as much as I enjoyed writing it.’


About the author:

Emma Kavanagh was born and raised in South Wales. After graduating with a PhD in Psychology from Cardiff University, she spent many years working as a police and military psychologist, training firearms officers, command staff and military personnel throughout the UK and Europe. Now she is lucky enough to be able to write for a living. She lives in South Wales with her husband and young son.