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The Secret Trilogy: Three Novels. Two Women. One Epic Love Story. Paperback – July 3, 2008


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Editorial Reviews

Review

Books To Watch Out For "elegant and lovely...understated, deliberate, sensual..."

Just About Write Magazine "Lesbian literature should become more sophisticated and offer depth...[this] meets those criteria."

From the Publisher

THE SECRET TRILOGY contains the three popular novels "The Secret Keeping", "Fortune Is A Woman" and "The Stolen Kiss" in their entirety. "The Secret Keeping" Saint Marie's debut novel, was a 2006 LAMBDA Notable Book; a 2007 Goldie Award finalist for best dramatic fiction; a 2007 semi-finalist for the Independent Publishers Award, and a 2007 IPPY Award Bronze Medalist.

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Product Details

  • Paperback: 628 pages
  • Publisher: CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform; First Edition edition (July 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1438240570
  • ISBN-13: 978-1438240572
  • Product Dimensions: 9.6 x 6.7 x 1.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 2.7 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (25 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,206,241 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

More About the Author

Published in 2006 by the renowned women's press Spinsters Ink, Francine Saint Marie's debut novel "The Secret Keeping" was a LAMBDA Notable Book, a Goldie Award finalist, a semi-finalist for the Independent Publishers Award and an IPPY Bronze medalist. Her popular three-novel LGBT series "The Secret Trilogy" containing her acclaimed debut was nominated for the prestigious Ferro/Grumley literary prize in fiction. She is also the recent recipient of the Green Book Award which honors works of literature that bring greater public awareness to issues concerning the environment. A writer and artist living in New York, Saint Marie's newest novel for young adults "Persuasion" is now available in digital editions at Barnes and Noble and elsewhere. Contact: FifthColumnPress[at]gmail.com



Customer Reviews

And really, really well written.
Roses Are Red
The scene in this book that the therapist character refers to as rough sex is most certainly not BDSM.
Deborah H. Bryant
I think your ending was done with great thought given to the characters and the readers.
Helen

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 26 people found the following review helpful By B. Rabkeb on September 4, 2008
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This was not a light, beach-read of escapist fiction. This absorbing book was not an easy read, but one with substance, in which you had to pay attention to what the author was doing with words and phrasing, changing pace and tone to bring out the nuances of her characters, their interactions, and their psychology.

Emotionally, the story of these three novels revolves around Lydia Beaumont, groomed by the formidable Paula Treadmill to succeed her in the upper echelons of their Fortune 500 financial firm, and the abiding love she has for Helaine Kristenson, which she seeks to express in the first book, then holds firm to ever after.

At the beginning of the first book Lydia has been recently unlucky in love, and only begins to emerge from her bruised numbness when she becomes unexpectedly fascinated by one Dr. Helaine Kristenson. Except she doesn't know who the famous psychiatrist is, and is in fact so absorbed in her financial world that she's wholly ignorant of pop culture to a large degree. She only knows that she can't get her out of her mind, and her life begins to open up again as she contemplates winning her affections. Little does she know that Helaine's attention has been unwillingly grabbed by tall, dark and beautiful Lydia.

There are no big dramatic scenes in these novels, in which the many simmering thoughts and emotions of the various players finally explode in great messy drama. But there is plenty of action. Machinations. Conflicting emotions. The supporting characters are each given meaty roles of their own in the intensely public and high-stakes dramas that play out involving Lydia, whose steady regard for Helaine drags her into the public eye.

These books are something of a series of character studies.
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22 of 26 people found the following review helpful By Elena on August 5, 2008
Format: Paperback
I posted part of this review under The Stolen Kiss, but I'm posting an edited/extended version here, in case it helps understand what can be expected from this trilogy, and from this author.

Fellow readers, be prepared to be in awe, to be surprised, to be enamored by this extraordinary sequence of events and this collection of larger than life characters. If you're after content description, you won't find it from me, but I refer you to some of the reviews for the three books in the series where you can glimpse what this trilogy is about in terms of "storyline". I don't want to spoil it for anyone, suffice to say it is an epic love story. I'm more inclined to talk about the form, because, frankly, I've never read anything quite like it in the so-called "lesbian fiction" genre.

For me, the byline for the whole trilogy is intelligent writing, very bold and extremely respectful of the readers' mind -Francine Saint Marie trusts that the reader will be pulled into the lives of these characters of their own accord, without pushing them in any given direction. The reader, in turn, is hereby advised to trust this writer and her masterful skill to accompany us for the ride, from a distance. She won't take your hand and smooth the way for you, though, more likely you'll feel about to be pushed from a cliff, no parachute in sight.

This trilogy is a mental trip of intense feelings, of understanding that what isn't said is just as powerful as what is said, of sitting there stunned between the end of one chapter and the beginning of the next, thinking "what now".
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49 of 62 people found the following review helpful By Deborah H. Bryant on March 23, 2009
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This trilogy's marketing tag line "Three novels. Two women. One epic love story" is almost entirely untrue. The novels are more like booklets. The women are more like cardboard movie posters. And the story is neither epic nor about love. I'll admit, there are two women in the story (and precious few other supporting characters.) I'll give `em that.

What a disappointment! I'm mystified as to where the positive reviews and the (gasp!) potential literary prize are coming from. I just don't see it. You've probably heard the term "lipstick lesbian". This book begs for another term: "Bisexual bobblehead." The characters wobble, all right, but they don't stand up.

The book revolves around two characters, and is relatively devoid of plot or setting to distract us from how shallowly they are drawn. The first is a licensed psychotherapist who specializes in couples therapy. She decides that she is in love with someone before they have exchanged a single syllable of conversation or, indeed, even directly introduced themselves. (I would hypothesize that most couples' therapists have ample opportunity to observe the difference between love and lust, as well as the consequences of confusing these two things.) Even more disturbing, she apparently cannot distinguish between date rape and rough sex, and neither can the story's narrator. (Apparently some reviewers are confused about this also, implying that readers will find BDSM in these novels. BDSM is a sexual art based on consent. The scene in this book that the therapist character refers to as rough sex is most certainly not BDSM. Rather, it meets all legal definitions of rape.)

The second character is a successful investment banker who is seemingly paralyzed by indecision.
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