Hide and Seeker

by Daka Hermon (Author)

Hide and Seeker
Reading Level: 4th – 5th Grade

One of our most iconic childhood games receives a creepy twist as it becomes the gateway to a nightmare world.

I went up the hill, the hill was muddy, stomped my toe and made it bloody, should I wash it?

Justin knows that something is wrong with his best friend. Zee went missing for a year. And when he came back, he was . . . different. Nobody knows what happened to him. At Zee's welcome home party, Justin and the neighborhood crew play Hide and Seek. But it goes wrong. Very wrong. One by one, everyone who plays the game disappears, pulled into a world of nightmares come to life. Justin and his friends realize this horrible place is where Zee had been trapped.

All they can do now is hide from the Seeker.

Kirkus Reviews

Starred Review
A chilling debut—like the Seeker, a tale that doesn’t let you go.

Publishers Weekly

Starred Review

Zee, sixth-grader Justin's best friend, has been missing for over a year--404 days to be exact. Now he's home, and his mother, Mrs. Murphy, is throwing a party. Invited along with Justin are other close friends Nia and Lyric, as well as the neighborhood bully, Carla, and her twin brother, Quincy. While waiting for the guest of honor, another neighborhood kid, Shae, arrives and suggests that they play hide-and-seek. The game devolves into a flurry of rule-breaking soon interrupted by the arrival of a changed, scarred Zee, who conveys a cryptic message: "One day soon you'll leave from here and fight against all you fear." When the game's players develop a mysterious mark and begin to disappear one by one, Justin and his friends must find a way to defeat a chilling foe in a world made up of their darkest fears. Hermon's standout debut offers spine-tingling prose that pulls no punches; nuanced depictions of grief, friendship, and fear; engaging characterization that makes readers root for its largely Black cast; and a reassuring ending that leaves room for future installments. Ages 8-12. Agent: Emily Keyes, Fuse Literary. (Sept.)

Copyright 2020 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.
Daka Hermon
Daka Hermon was born in Tennessee and spent her childhood huddled under a blanket with a flashlight reading and writing fairy-tale and fantasy stories. She works in the entertainment industry, and is an active member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. She loves peach sweet tea, chocolate, cupcakes, and collecting superhero toys. Daka lives in California and can be found online at dakahermon.com and on Twitter @dakadh.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
Scholastic Press
Publication date
September 20, 2020
BISAC categories
JUV018000 - Juvenile Fiction | Horror
JUV052000 - Juvenile Fiction | Monsters
JUV067000 - Juvenile Fiction | Thrillers & Suspense
Library of Congress categories
Missing children
Horror stories
Horror fiction
Horror tales

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