Book Review: The Shadows We Hide (Joe Talbert #2) by Allen Eskens #BookReview #TheShadowsWeHide #Fiction

The Shadows We Hide (Joe Talbert #2)

By Allen Eskens

My thoughts on this book:

I read The Life We Bury a few years ago and loved it. Naturally, I was ecstatic to see that Allen Eskins came out with this sequel The Shadows We Hide. This second book definitely met my expectations.

In this sequel, Joe is now a reporter for the Associated Press in Minneapolis. He’s living with his girlfriend Lila who is studying to be a lawyer. Jeremy, Joe’s autistic brother, is living with them too after a blow up with Joe’s mom previously. At this point, Joe can care less if he ever sees his mother again. Lila helps out with Jeremy and she’s super supportive.

Joe is dealing with trouble at work–he’s in the process of being sued for an article he wrote about a senator. Out of the blue, a report surfaces about a man named Joseph Talbert who’s been murdered in a rural Minnesota county. Even though Joe has never met his father, he can’t help but wonder if this could be him, and his curiosity won’t let it go. He heads to Caspen County to investigate and learns that Joseph Talbert has done nothing but anger everyone in this rural town. He was a jerk–there isn’t a soul who liked him–but what makes him interesting is that due to a marriage, there’s a huge inheritance involved and a possible half-sister to Joe from a marriage. The question is: can this Joseph Talbert really be Joe’s father?

I loved the plot. Joe is so involved in this investigation and practically takes it over from the cops. He can definitely hold his own. This comes as no surprise because Joe was such an amazing investigator in the last book. There’s so much going on in the background with all the secondary characters here that I couldn’t figure out the mystery of the book until the very end. Never once was this book predictable for me! I loved the writing too.

As far as characters, I thought they were all complex and interesting. Everyone had a story, but what I loved most was getting a glimse into Joe’s past regarding his mom and brother. Readers also get an idea of some of the problems his mother is dealing with and she becomes better understood. I’ll admit, I was hoping Lila and Jeremy would have larger roles, but most of the story follows Joe and the investigation.

Overall, I really enjoyed this book and it kept me guessing all the way to the end. It was thrilling and I appreciated reading something with a mystery to it. I liked the small town setting and the themes of forgiveness, perserverence, and family. I love the cover too–it fits the story perfectly! My only complaint was that maybe a few parts in the book were a little too good to be true and not as believable. It certainly doesn’t take much away from the story though.

I’d like to thank Mulholland Books for sharing a copy of this book with me.


Find this book on Goodreads and Amazon:

  • Hardcover: 352 pages
  • Publisher: Mulholland Books (November 13, 2018)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316509787
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316509787

From Goodreads:

In the highly-anticipated sequel to the national bestseller The Life We Bury, Joe Talbert returns to investigate the murder of the father he never knew, and to reckon with his own family’s past.

Joe Talbert, Jr. has never once met his namesake. Now out of college, a cub reporter for the Associated Press in Minneapolis, he stumbles across a story describing the murder of a man named Joseph Talbert in a small town in southern Minnesota.

Full of curiosity about whether this man might be his father, Joe is shocked to find that none of the town’s residents have much to say about the dead man-other than that his death was long overdue. Joe discovers that the dead man was a loathsome lowlife who cheated his neighbors, threatened his daughter, and squandered his wife’s inheritance after she, too, passed away–an inheritance that may now be Joe’s.
Mired in uncertainty and plagued by his own devastated relationship with his mother, who is seeking to get back into her son’s life, Joe must put together the missing pieces of his family history– before his quest for discovery threatens to put him in a grave of his own.

Thanks for reading my review of The Shadows We Hide. Have you read this book? Feel free to share your thoughts below. Have a wonderful weekend!

♥️ Mischenko

21 thoughts on “Book Review: The Shadows We Hide (Joe Talbert #2) by Allen Eskens #BookReview #TheShadowsWeHide #Fiction

  1. starjustin

    Wow, nice review! I felt the same way when I read this book. I like the authors ability to keep his readers interested til the end. I look forward to a continuation of the story if there’s one in the making. 😉📙

    Liked by 1 person

  2. Pingback: Sunshine Blogger Award #4 – Whit Reads Lit

  3. Wonderful review Jen. I just read The Life We Bury a few months ago and loved it. I need to read this one soon. I love Jeremy as well, glad he is in the story, too bad it is in a minimal role. Really looking forward to this one.

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks, Carla! Oh, I think you’ll enjoy this one then. It’s a bit different, but it kept me interested throughout. Jeremy is still in the book, Lila and Joe’s mom too, but the main plot is basically Joe’s investigation. It’s still wonderful. I can’t wait for your thoughts! ❤💜❤

      Liked by 1 person

  4. Oh! I was born & raised in Minnesota so this would be super interesting to read. There aren’t many novels I know of that are based there & I love that you weren’t able to predict a thing. Wonderful review, Mischenko. 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

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