Book:

THE CHALK MAN

C. J. Tudor

Looking back, it all started on the day of the fair and the terrible accident. When twelve-year-old Eddie first met the Chalk Man. It was the Chalk Man who gave Eddie the idea for the drawings: a way to leave secret messages between his group of friends. And it was fun, to start with, until the figures led them to the body of a young girl. Most of it, at any rate. That was thirty years ago and Ed thought the past was behind him. Then he receives a letter containing just two things: a piece of chalk, and a drawing of a stick figure. As history begins to repeat itself, Ed realises the game was never over… Everyone has secrets. Everyone is guilty of something. And children are not always so innocent

Reviews:

“The Chalk Man is coming and there’s nothing you can do to stop him. Tense, skilful storytelling and plenty of horror.”

Ali Land, Sunday Times bestselling author of Good Me, Bad Me

“It’s been a while since I’ve read such an impressive debut. The pace was perfectly judged, with a lovely feel of Stand By Me about the 1986 scenes and beguiling nostalgia in the contemporary narrative, all mixed in with a creeping sense of unease that starts with the Prologue and grows throughout the book. The characters were superbly drawn – not too much physical description but wonderful interplay between the five young friends and their adult selves. And then that ending…. Generally speaking I’ve either enjoyed something and want to recommend it to all my friends, or haven’t and don’t much want to talk about it. The Chalk Man definitely falls into the former category, and it deserves to be a huge success. It feels so fresh…. I’ll be telling everyone else to read it when it comes out in January.”

James Oswald

“CJ Tudor has written an utterly original novel—a thriller in which the suspense comes not simply from what happens, but from that dark place within the human mind from which all the greatest mysteries and terrors emerge. This one will hold you in its grip to the last page.”

Joyce Maynard, New York Times bestselling author of Under the Influence and To Die For

“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

“Completely engrossing. Reminiscent of those unsettling Stephen King stories of childhood.”

John Boyne, author of The Boy in the Striped Pyjamas

  “If you’re looking for a psychological thriller this holiday I recommend this. I’m very fussy with books because I never have time to read but this was easy, gripping, enjoyable and worth it.”   Cecilia Ahearn, author of P.S. I Love You  

“In The Chalk Man, 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

“I absolutely loved The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor! It’s a dark, mesmerising thriller with an ending that left me with goosebumps!”

Nuala Elwood, author of My Sister’s Bones

“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

“Absolutely brilliant. I was enthralled from start to finish. 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 CJ 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, bestselling author of The Escape

“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 Neill, author of The Betrayals

“C.J. Tudor bursts onto the scene with a page-turning thriller that draws simple but terrifying lines about evil and the haunting nature of childhood. Flip open the first page and you’ll curl up all night.”

Julia Heaberlin, Sunday Times bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans

 “An absorbing debut with a well-crafted mystery and a solid dose of Stand by Me creepiness.”

Booklist

“A band of preteens in a quaint English village in the late 1980s confront true evil and grapple with the lifelong consequences in this gripping debut mystery/thriller… Readers who relish dark, twisty thrillers will be kept guessing. Taut plotting, smooth writing, and a compelling premise will satisfy fans of Jo Nesbo, Camilla Lackberg, and Tana French.”

Library Journal

Reviews:

The Chalk Man grabbed me by the throat from the very first sentence and didn’t let go until the final, heart-stopping page.”

Nuala Ellwood, author of The Day of the Accident
Nuala Ellwood , author of The Day of the Accident

Even Brexit impact reports made less frightening reading than CJ Tudor’s Stephen King-esque coming-of-age story cum murder mystery The Chalk Man. With tyro crime writers this dark, the future is bright.

Telegraph’s Books of the Year round up
Telegraph’s Books of the Year round up

It’s a very clever story - you’ll love it!

Joanna Cannon, Sunday Times bestselling author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep
Joanna Cannon , Sunday Times bestselling author of The Trouble with Goats and Sheep

C. J. Tudor’s very clever, wrong-footing debut will leave you checking that the doors and windows of your holiday cottage are secure…

Radio Times
Radio Times

A labyrinthine tale that kept me guessing right to the end

Val McDermid
Val McDermid

If you're looking for a psychological thriller this holiday I recommend this. I'm very fussy with books because I never have time to read but this was easy, gripping, enjoyable and worth it.

Cecilia Ahern, author of P.S. I Love You
Cecilia Ahern , author of P.S. I Love You

A creepy atmospheric thriller...THE CHALK MAN is a must-read.

Mystery Scene Magazine
Mystery Scene Magazine

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

Laura Wilson, The Guardian
Laura Wilson , The Guardian

This insanely readable chiller has it all – a brilliant, nostalgic flavour, humour and heart… A fantastic debut from a major new talent

Sunday Mirror
Sunday Mirror

I jumped so many times while reading that I could have been sitting on a chair made of cactus

Sunday Express
Sunday Express

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
Daily Mail

A striking debut

Sunday Times
Sunday Times

A must read for all horror fans.

Daily Express
Daily Express

Deliciously creepy with a side order of Eighties nostalgia

Good Housekeeping
Good Housekeeping

The uncertain first pages of this supernatural-tinged thriller make one fear the worst. Thankfully The Chalk Man soon develops into an intriguing puzzle with an engaging cast of characters…A highly promising debut

Thriller of the Week, Mail on Sunday
Thriller of the Week , Mail on Sunday

A band of preteens in a quaint English village in the late 1980s confront true evil and grapple with the lifelong consequences in this gripping debut mystery/thriller… Readers who relish dark, twisty thrillers will be kept guessing. Taut plotting, smooth writing, and a compelling premise will satisfy fans of Jo Nesbo, Camilla Lackberg, and Tana French.

Library Journal
Library Journal

An absorbing debut with a well-crafted mystery and a solid dose of Stand by Me creepiness.

Booklist
Booklist

C.J. Tudor bursts onto the scene with a page-turning thriller that draws simple but terrifying lines about evil and the haunting nature of childhood. Flip open the first page and you’ll curl up all night.

Julia Heaberlin, Sunday Times bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans
Julia Heaberlin , Sunday Times bestselling author of Black-Eyed Susans

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 Neill, author of The Betrayals
Fiona Neill , author of The Betrayals

Absolutely brilliant. I was enthralled from start to finish. 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 CJ 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, bestselling author of The Escape
C.L. Taylor , bestselling author of The Escape

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
Helen Callaghan , bestselling author of Dear Amy

I absolutely loved The Chalk Man by C.J. Tudor! It’s a dark, mesmerising thriller with an ending that left me with goosebumps!

Nuala Elwood, author of My Sister’s Bones
Nuala Elwood , author of My Sister’s Bones

In The Chalk Man, 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
Michelle Richmond , author of The Marriage Pact

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
Claire Douglas , Sunday Times bestselling author of Last Seen Alive

CJ Tudor has written an utterly original novel—a thriller in which the suspense comes not simply from what happens, but from that dark place within the human mind from which all the greatest mysteries and terrors emerge. This one will hold you in its grip to the last page.

Joyce Maynard, New York Times bestselling author of Under the Influence and To Die For
Joyce Maynard , New York Times bestselling author of Under the Influence and To Die For

It’s been a while since I’ve read such an impressive debut. The pace was perfectly judged, with a lovely feel of Stand By Me about the 1986 scenes and beguiling nostalgia in the contemporary narrative, all mixed in with a creeping sense of unease that starts with the Prologue and grows throughout the book. The characters were superbly drawn - not too much physical description but wonderful interplay between the five young friends and their adult selves. And then that ending.... Generally speaking I’ve either enjoyed something and want to recommend it to all my friends, or haven’t and don’t much want to talk about it. The Chalk Man definitely falls into the former category, and it deserves to be a huge success. It feels so fresh…. I’ll be telling everyone else to read it when it comes out in January.

James Oswald
James Oswald

The Chalk Man is coming and there's nothing you can do to stop him. Tense, skilful storytelling and plenty of horror.

Ali Land, Sunday Times bestselling author of Good Me, Bad Me
Ali Land , Sunday Times bestselling author of Good Me, Bad Me

Genre

Psychological Thriller

UK Publication

Penguin Random House / Michael Joseph, January 2018

US Publication

Penguin Random House / Crown, January 2018

Rights Sales

UK & Commonwealth: Penguin Random House / Michael Joseph
US: Penguin Random House / Crown

Arabic: Arabic Scientific
Bulgarian: Colibri
Catalonian: Penguin Random House Spain
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Dutch: A W Bruna
Estonian: Varrak
Finnish: WSOY
French:Flammarion
German: Goldmann
Greek: Klidarithmos
Hebrew: Books in the Attic/Yedioth
Hungarian: Művelt Nép
Icelandic: Bjartur
Indonesian: PT Elexmedia Komputindo
Italian: Rizzoli
Japanese: Bungei Shunjyu
Korean: Dasan Books
Latvian: Alma Littera
Lithuanian: Alma Littera
Norwegian: Cappelen Damm
Polish: Czarna Owca
Portuguese: Planeta
Portuguese (Brazil): Intrinseca
Romanian: Nemira
Russian: Family Leisure Club
Serbian: Laguna
Slovak: Ikar
Slovenian: Ucila
Spanish: Penguin Random House Spain
Swedish: Wahlström & Widstrand
Chinese complex: Crown
Thai: Under offer
Turkish: Pegasus
Ukrainian: Family Leisure Club