Erin Healy has written two books in collaboration with Ted Dekker: Kiss and Burn. Both intense and thrilling and all things Dekker that I love and know. I had never read any of Healy's books before, but her latest release, Hiding Places, came into the store shortly after I read Burn again. Naturally, I couldn't resist the pull. And true to her best-selling reputation, Healy did not disappoint.
Hiding Places follows the lives of a wider cast of characters, but the one that Healy gives the most attention is an eleven year old girl named Kate. She has two half-sisters and lives in a hotel lodge run by her family. And for the most part, she passes by unnoticed. She's a small, forgotten part of a quiet life, playing spy and secret agent to the indulgences of her grandfather. The lodge has reams of hiding places and secret passageways, as a result of World War II, when the owners - Kate's great-great-grandparents - were trying to keep Japanese immigrants from being sent to internment camps. Thankfully, they never had to use any of the secret nooks and passageways for their intended purposes, but in the effort to expand her capabilities as a spy, Kate slips in and out of them more often than anywhere else.
Kate is not a sassy character, per se, but she does have a mind all of her own, which comes with being left to fend for herself when she's not in school, because the rest of her family is working. She bonds the most with her grandfather, Grandy, and they like to leave little hidden gifts for each other every once in a while, or she'll watch him while he works on projects in his shop.
Her life of espionage reaches new heights when a young man by the name of Charlie Fuse is injured in an encounter on a motorcycle with a mountain cat. While he's running from a street gang who think he's responsible for a murder. This Charlie and the man chasing him, Fox, are two of the other perspectives that Healy writes from, making for a twisting, spiraling, and thrilling story that nearly stopped my heart in more than a few places. She knows how to leave you hanging and keep you reading, and guessing, to the very end of the novel. The characters themselves plainly beg you to read on and discover how it all has to end.
Yet another novel that I kept in reach of my fingertips until I read to the very end.
For more information on Hiding Places by Erin Healy, visit our website here.