Thursday 23 June 2022

We All Have Our Secrets by Jane Corry @JaneCorryAuthor @VikingBooksUK @PenguinUKBooks #WeAllHaveOurSecrets @EllieeHud #BookReview


Two women are staying in Willowmead House.

One of them is running.

One of them is hiding.

Both of them are lying.

Emily made one bad decision, and now her career could be over. Her family home on the Cornish coast is the only place where she feels safe. But when she arrives, there's a stranger living with her father. Emily doesn't trust the beautiful young woman, convinced that she's telling one lie after another. Soon, Emily becomes obsessed with finding out the truth...

But should some secrets stay buried forever?

We All Have Our Secrets by Jane Corry is published by Penguin Viking in paperback today; 23 June 2022. My thanks to the publisher who sent my copy for review. 

Ahh, secrets! Secrets make the best stories don't they? Jane Corry has taken a trio of characters and given them all the most devastating of secrets and created a mystery that intrigues and perplexes right up until the final chapters. 

Our two lead female characters are Emily and Françoise and both are totally unreliable. Corry gives them the opportunity to tell their individual sides of this story in their own chapters, cleverly allowing the reader to make judgements, only to have those opinions blown away when reading the alternative side of things.

Emily is a midwife in London. She loves her job, but is struggling at the moment. When a terrible mistake is discovered, Emily is put under investigation. She flees to Willowmead House, her childhood home by the sea where her elderly father Harold still lives. When she arrives, she is greeted by Françoise; a beautifully groomed French woman who claims that she is Harold's carer and that she answered his advertisement for help. Emily is shocked and stunned. Harold has never in the past accepted the need for help, and not only that, the relationship between Harold and Françoise makes her very uneasy. She's jealous of their closeness and feels that Harold is favouring her. 

Harold is not a nice man. He's a retired solicitor and everything he says must be correct. He's grumpy, manipulative and sometimes violent. He seems to take great pleasure in hurting Emily, even though she's his only child.

Françoise's own story is intriguing, but the reader is never quite sure just what is the truth, it's story that exposes many lies and secrets, but also raises many questions. 

I have to admit that I didn't really like any of the characters, especially in the first half, but as the novel progresses and seems to turn away from a thriller and become more of a family drama, I began to understand their behaviours. 

Nestled between the modern-day story are snippets from Harold's time during the war in France and I really enjoyed this aspect of the tale, I would have liked more of this and these past stories certainly explained some of Harold's current behaviour. 

Part thriller, part family saga, the author explores many themes within the story. At times it felt a little rushed towards the end, yet the middle part also dragged a little, but it is certainly an enjoyable read with a conclusion that I certainly didn't anticipate. 

Jane Corry is a writer and journalist (Daily Telegraph and women's magazines) who worked for three years as the writer in residence of a high security male prison. This experience helped inspire her Sunday Times Penguin bestsellers 'My Husband's Wife', 'Blood Sisters', 'The Dead Ex', 'I Looked Away' 'I Made A Mistake', 'o Tell The Truth' and 'We All Have Our Secrets'. She has now sold over a million copies of her books world-wide.

Jane also writes short stories as well as a weekly digital column about being a granny for My Weekly. As well as this, she speaks at literary festivals all over the world. Many of her ideas strike during morning dog-jogs along the beach followed by a dip in the sea - no matter how cold it is!

Jane's brand-new thriller 'We All Have Our Secrets' is  published on June 24 by Penguin Viking. 

You can find Jane on Twitter at @JaneCorryAuthor and on Facebook at JaneCorryAuthor as well as Instagram. See website for details of events.

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