Wednesday, September 4, 2013

"The Secret Keeper" Review

From the New York Times and #1 internationally bestselling author of The Distant Hours, The Forgotten Garden, and The House at Riverton, a spellbinding novel of family secrets, murder, and enduring love.

About the Book: During a picnic at her family’s farm in the English countryside, sixteen-year-old Laurel Nicolson witnesses a shocking crime, a crime that challenges everything she knows about her adored mother, Dorothy.

Now, fifty years later, Laurel and her sisters are meeting at the farm to celebrate Dorothy’s ninetieth birthday. Realizing that this is her last chance to discover the truth about that long-ago day, Laurel searches for answers that can only be found in Dorothy’s past.

Clue by clue, she traces a secret history of three strangers from vastly different worlds thrown together in war-torn London—Dorothy, Vivien, and Jimmy—whose lives are forever after entwined.

A gripping story of deception and passion, The Secret Keeper will keep you enthralled to the last page.

My Take:

Wow. Just – wow.

I have only read one other book by Kate Morton, The Forgotten Garden, and it was fantastic. But I would daresay that this one was even better.

The Secret Keeper starts off very well by getting your attention right away. The author also has a way of helping you to get to know the characters easily, which makes the overall flow of the novel seamless and engrossing. Also true to the author’s style, this novel is told from the viewpoint of several different people and jumps back and forth from the past to the present day. As I said, though, the flow of the novel is seamless, and I was never confused as to who was telling the story or what time period it was.

Part of this novel takes place in London during World War Two. Admittedly, this is not my favorite historical time period for fiction, but for this book, the setting was perfect. I was totally engrossed in the part of the story that revolved around the war and the devastation that it had on London.

It is hard to talk about much of the plot of this book without totally ruining all of the twists and turns that this novel takes. Although I did eventually figure out the main plot twist, I had no idea how it was going to take place. So even though the ending was not a complete surprise, I was still interested in how everything was going to tie together.

The only thing that keeps me from giving this book a 5-BookWorm rating is the fact that it is just so long. There was a point about a third or so of the way through the book that I was thinking, “just get on with it,” and the characters were starting to get on my nerves. Once things kind of came back together, though, it picked up again, and the remainder of the novel was excellent.

This was my book club’s selection for July, and everyone really enjoyed it.

I will give The Secret Keeper … 4 ½ (or even 4 ¾!) BookWorms!


The Secret Keeper
by Kate Morton
Atria Books
Publication date: October 16, 2012

Disclosure of Material Connection: I received this book free from Atria Books through NetGalley. I was not required to write a positive review. The opinions I have expressed are my own. I am disclosing this is accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: "Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising."

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