Review: Hidden (The Texas Murder Files #1) by Laura Griffin

The second I finished The Vanishing Tree, I ordered this one on my iPad. I loved The Vanishing Tree and couldn’t wait to get my hands on another book by Griffin. I loved the balance of romance and murder mystery and I was eager to read more by her. I debated about reading another of her stand alone books but this series is fairly short (four books so far) and if I loved the series as much as the stand alone book, then I wanted to have more I could read.

I originally felt like the Tracer series was too long (I think there are 13 or 14 books in that series) and I wanted something that seemed manageable as far as series go. In my mind I was like ok if this series is good I can binge four books no problem and then move on to something else. Well that was BS if I ever heard it as I am currently done with this series and four books into the Tracers series!

I think what I love about Griffin’s books is there is this great, easy to follow romance to break up the murder and investigating. The focus really is the mystery though but the romances are believable and don’t feel like an add on after the fact. They are thought out and well done but also don’t eclipse or over take the mystery. It’s such a good balance and they make for quick easy reads which is just want I need in my life as the holidays ramp up!


When a woman is found brutally murdered on Austin’s lakeside hike-and-bike trail, investigative reporter Bailey Rhoads turns up on the scene demanding access and answers. She tries to pry information out of the lead detective, Jacob Merritt. But this case is unlike any he’s ever seen, and nothing adds up.

Bailey has a hunch the victim wasn’t who she claimed to be and believes this mugging-turned-murder could have been a targeted hit. When she digs deeper, the trail leads her to a high-tech fortress on the outskirts of Austin where researchers are pushing the boundaries of a cutting-edge technology that could be deadly in the wrong hands.

As a ruthless hit man’s mission becomes clear, Bailey and Jacob must embark on a desperate search to locate the next target before the clock ticks down on this lethal game of hide and seek. (summary from Goodreads)


I really love the modern angle of Griffin’s books when it comes to crime, murder and motive. This book has a high tech angle to it and I really liked how modern and exciting this one felt. Griffin has a ‘to the point’ style and I really appreciate that so her style mixed with the more modern elements in the murder investigation really made this one a quick read (like I read in it a day). It clips along nicely with a lot of moments that leave the reader saying ‘ok just one more page!’ before they turn the light off. I also thought the romance worked well in this one. Bailey was this great independent, modern woman who was bold and committed to her job while Jacob was equally invested in his career and found Bailey to be attractive an interesting but also in his way when it came to his investigation.

I loved watching them come together and work out their differences and learn to trust one another as well as realize their true feelings for one another. Their romance was a fun treat for me as a reader that balanced out a great whodunnit with a dark side. This book, as well as most of Griffin’s books, are more on the darker side of crime. The murders are usually more brutal and shocking in a way that some of the other crime books I’ve read, are not. Then you have this hot romance that comes in and adds a whole new layer to the overall story and I am really enjoying how that dynamic plays out in her books. It’s really got me hooked!

Needless to say I had downloaded the entire series before I was even done with book one, knowing I would binge it and sure enough I have! Now that I have read the other books in this series I can say that there are other better ones in the series but this one is a solid start to the series. The books don’t need to be read in order as each book is a new case and new romance with characters who might be familiar from previous books but who haven’t had their story told. I was worried they needed to be read in order but they do not and you can certainly jump around. As for my favorite in this series so far—-you are going to have to keep reading my reviews to find out but I will say this one is up there as a favorite so far!

Book Info and Rating


328 pages, Mass Market PaperbackPublished

August 25, 2020 by Berkley BooksISBN

9780593197325 (ISBN10: 0593197321)

Review copy provided by, personal collection, all opinions are my own and in no way influenced.

Rating: 4.5 stars

Genre: romantic suspense


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