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Reviewed by Liz Konkel for Readers' Favorite
Hiding in Third Person by Phil Bradley follows the story of Ricky, an orderly at the Cumberland County Asylum for the Mentally Ill. When Ricky is asked to listen to the story of a patient, he's drawn into a tale of friendship, fear, survival, and new beginnings. The patient referred to as Mr. River shares the story of two runaway boys, Malachi and Doc, who must rely on each other to thwart a killer known as the Finder. Taking refuge in an abandoned military base, BOMARC, the boys develop a plan as police officers form a search party to find them before it's too late. The asylum doctors decide that Mr. River is a hopeless case and plan to transfer him to a remote institution, on the basis that he has yet to improve and a lot of the characters in his story don't exist. However, Ricky knows this story is true and is determined to prove it.
Hiding in Third Person is an emotional tale of two unlikely friends that will capture the heart, with action, friendship, and mystery. Friendship is at the heart of the story, with Ricky forming an attachment to Mr. River through the tale of Malachi and Doc. As Ricky listens to the story, he grows as a character, becoming more sympathetic and compelling. Phil Bradley keeps you guessing as to whether Mr. River's story really happened until the very end, with the answer revealed in an endearing twist. Both Malachi in the story and Ricky go out of their way to help a stranger; both are underestimated heroes that are strong in their own ways. Compelling and honest, Hiding in Third Person is a heartwarming gem that's riveting, intriguing, and surprising. A definite must-read that you won't want to put down!