6 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Addictive Story Told in a Touching Fashion,
This review is from: The Secret Keeper: A Novel (Hardcover)
The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton is truly the best kind of book - it is a thrilling story full of heart and humor, and has a delightfully unexpected ending. It kept me guessing the whole time.
The story centers around Dorothy and her daughter, Laurel, and a secret that impacted them both one summer afternoon. A teenage Laurel peeks out of her tree house loft to see a stranger approach her mother and baby brother and watches as her mother stabs him. Laurel tries to make sense of it, but pushes it to the back of her mind for fifty years until her mother is in hospice care and nearing the end of her life. Sparked by a dated photo in an inscribed copy of Peter Pan, Laurel becomes intrigued by a chapter of her mother's life that was hidden for so many decades. Determined to understand who the man was, why her mother would do such an unexpectedly out-of-character thing, and whether her mother can be blamed, Laurel (now a famous actress), must uncover Dorothy's secret.
With beautiful voice and power, The Secret Keeper unravels the events of the past by looking back at Dorothy as a young girl, Laurel in the present day, and those who have crossed their paths over the ages. Through painstaking research, Laurel comes to discover that her mother isn't exactly who she appeared to be for so many years, and that a shocking series of events in WWII led her to live a life filled with regret and dreams of the past. This story is magnificently told, and despite its length, I found myself wanting to know all the details of Laurel, Dorothy, Dorothy's former boyfriend, Jimmy, and Dorothy's former friend, Vivien. The powerful connections between mother and daughter, and all of the sisters in the family are a timeless backdrop for such an original story. The ending is a complete surprise, and I was thrilled that Morton kept me engaged and intrigued the entire time.
I cannot recommend this book enough. The Secret Keeper is a real winner and offers lots of discussion opportunities for book clubs.