It all began with a simple seaside vacation, a brother and sister recapturing their childhood. Antoine Rey thought he had the perfect surprise for his sister Mélanie’s birthday: a weekend by the sea at Noirmoutier Island, where the pair spent many happy childhood summers playing on the beach. It had been too long, Antoine thought, since they’d returned to the island—over thirty years, since their mother died and the family holidays ceased. But the island’s haunting beauty triggers more than happy memories; it reminds Mélanie of something unexpected and deeply disturbing about their last island summer. When, on the drive home to Paris, she finally summons the courage to reveal what she knows to Antoine, her emotions overcome her and she loses control of the car.
Recovering from the accident in a nearby hospital, Mélanie tries to recall what caused her to crash. Antoine encounters an unexpected ally: sexy, streetwise Angèle, a mortician who will teach him new meanings for the words life, love and death. Suddenly, however, the past comes swinging back at both siblings, burdened with a dark truth about their mother, Clarisse.
Trapped in the wake of a shocking family secret shrouded by taboo, Antoine must confront his past and also his troubled relationships with his own children. How well does he really know his mother, his children, even himself? Suddenly fragile on all fronts as a son, a husband, a brother and a father, Antoine Rey will learn the truth about his family and himself the hard way. By turns thrilling, seductive and destructive, with a lingering effect that is bittersweet and redeeming, A Secret Kept is the story of a modern family, the invisible ties that hold it together, and the impact it has throughout life.
Isn't that cover beautiful?
Something that I love is when an author who has several books has the covers done in some way that they either match or are very similar. It's very pleasing to the eye to see them all sitting on your bookshelf. :)
Here are the covers of her other two novels. I'll be reading The House I Loved very soon.
I read Sarah's Key by de Rosnay a while back and was absolutely enthralled, especially since it was her debut novel. So when I picked up A Secret Kept, I admit that I expected another shocking read, and on that front I was a bit let down. In retrospect, I can admire Rosnay's difference in writing between these two novels. I think that it shows a certain depth to her writing style. A Secret Kept does not have the twists and turns leading to gut wrenching revelations the way Sarah's Key does, but it does have an unmatched realistic quality that you do not find very often. I found that the thoughts of Antoine were the thoughts of a real person; truthful, if not a bit odd at times, but that it how people really are(or I think so, anyhow).
I gave this book three stars. I enjoyed it but also found it easy to put down. And that's okay. Not all books are meant to be devoured at once. Sometimes I have to remind myself to savor a book or else I might forget to enjoy it.