Review: The Hiddenseek

Title: The Hiddenseek
Author: Nate Cernosek
Genre: Middle Grade, Fantasy
Publisher: G.P. Putnam’s Sons Books for Young Readers
Source: Publisher via NetGalley
Format: Ebook
Release Date: August 24, 2021
Rating: ★★★★★


Goodreads Synopsis:

In this spine-chilling middle grade debut–perfect for fans of Small Spaces and the Goosebumps series–a brother and sister are transported to a cursed world based on the game hide-and-seek, where they are pursued by a shape-shifting witch, the game never ends, and the only way to get home is to win. 

“You hid. But you were not found. You thought you were playing a harmless game. You were wrong.” 

After Holly and Hector Thorn are left behind during a simple game of hide-and-seek, they find themselves transported to a gloomy, magical world seemingly trapped in time–the Hiddenseek. There, It, a witch with the ability to transform into a raven and a wolf, stalks children day and night, turning any she can lay hands on into statues, frozen forever in their final moments of terror. 

Together with the other lost children they encounter, Holly and Hector will have to unravel the mysterious origins of the Hiddenseek and find a way to put a stop to the curse once and for all, before they get stuck there forever . . . Because in this twisted game of hide-and-seek, they are playing for their lives.


The only thing worse than being found while playing hide and seek is not being found at all. When Holly was playing hide and seek with her brother, Hector, and his friends, she wasn’t found. She came out of her hiding spot and saw a man, named Oliver, who told her he must take her to a place called The Hiddenseek since she lost the game. Hector also wasn’t found, so he was sent to The Hiddenseek with Holly. Now, they’re in an even more dangerous game, being chased by It, a witch who can turn them to stone if she catches them. Holly and Hector have to win the game to save their lives.

Most kids play hide and seek, but usually the stakes are not as high as they are in The Hiddenseek. It’s not fun to not be found, because, though it could mean that you found a great hiding place, it could also mean that the other players forgot about you. Holly and Hector, along with the other kids they meet, were all tricked while playing hide and seek and not found. This was the ultimate worst ending to a game of hide and seek.

This was a spooky story. The kids were transported to a forest with a deep history. They had to figure out why they had been brought there before they could find their way home. I would have loved this spooky horror story when I was a kid!

The Hiddenseek is a creepy middle grade story!

Thank you Penguin Teen for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

What to read next:

Hush-A-Bye by Jody Lee Mott

Paola Santiago and the River of Tears by Tehlor Kay Mejia

Have you read The Hiddenseek? What did you think of it?


Author: jilljemmett

Jill lives in Toronto, Canada. She has studied English, Creative Writing, and Publishing. Jill is the creator and content producer of Jill’s Book Blog, where she has published a blog post every day for the last four years, including 5-7 book reviews a week. She can usually be found with her nose in a book.

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