Cover image for The shadows we hide / Allen Eskens.
The shadows we hide / Allen Eskens.

First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Mulholland Books, Little, Brown and Company, 2018.
Physical Description:
343 pages ; 25 cm
Cub reporter Joe Talbert, Jr. investigates the murder of a man with the same name as him in a small town in Minnesota and discovers the deceased was a loathsome lowlife who may be his father.


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ESK Book Adult General Collection

On Order



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.

Author Notes

Allen Eskens is the USA Today bestselling author of The Life We Bury, The Guise of Another, The Heavens May Fall, and The Deep Dark Descending. He is the recipient of the Barry Award, the Rosebud Award, Minnesota Book Award, and the Silver Falchion Award, and has been a finalist for the Edgar Award, the Thriller Award, and the Anthony Award. His debut novel, The Life We Bury, has been published in 21 languages and is being developed for a feature film.

Eskens lives with his wife, Joely, in out-state Minnesota, where he was a criminal defense attorney for 25 years.

Reviews 2

Publisher's Weekly Review

Joe Talbert, last seen in Edgar-finalist Eskens's debut, 2014's The Life We Bury, is now a Minneapolis-based Associated Press reporter. In this brilliant sequel full of deeply developed characters, Talbert feels compelled to investigate after he runs across a story detailing the murder of Joe "Toke" Talbert, a person he never met but could have been his father, in the small southern Minnesota town of Buckley. A junk car collector rumored to be involved in more than a few felonious crimes, Toke could have been killed by any number of locals. Talbert's search for answers becomes complicated when he discovers that Toke's wife recently committed suicide and his late father stood in line to inherit millions. Eskens keeps readers guessing until the last pages in this darkly lyrical and brutally intimate story of one man's journey of self-discovery. Agent: Amy Cloughley, Kimberley Cameron Agency. (Nov.) © Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved.

Library Journal Review

Joe Talbert's journalism career is on the line after a senator files suit over a story and Joe refuses to reveal his source. Just as Joe is forced to take a leave of absence, he receives word that his long-absent father has been murdered. Using the mystery of Joe "Toke" Talbert's death as a distraction from his legal worries, his responsibilities for his autistic brother, and a widening distance with his girlfriend, Joe takes off to investigate the killing. While he's not surprised to learn that Toke terrorized his neighbors, he's shocked to learn he might now be heir to a multimillion-dollar fortune. Even more shocking, he might have to split his fortune with a half-sister, Angel, if she survives an overdose-induced coma. Joe will have to wade into the waters of family dysfunction before he can find closure. VERDICT Featuring characters from Eskens's debut, The Life We Bury, this title by the "Max Rupert" mysteries author begins slowly but gains momentum as the circumstances surrounding Toke's death unravel. While the ending wraps up a little too perfectly, readers will enjoy the ride. Newcomers will be able to follow the story but may wish they had started with the first book. [See Prepub Alert, 5/14/18.]-Jennifer Beach, Longwood Univ. Lib., Farmville, VA © Copyright 2018. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.