50 in 2012: Book Twenty One

Secret LivesSecret Lives by Diane Chamberlain

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

Multiple story lines woven together in a multifaceted, thought provoking page turner.

Eden Riley, a successful movie star, decides to turn her mother’s life story into a movie. In order to do so, she returns home for the first time in years to do some practical, hands on research. Her mother, Katherine Swift, a popular and well known children’s book author, died when Eden was a young girl. As Eden writes her screen play, she learns the truth behind her mother’s perceived crazy antics and aloof ways. Shortly after her arrival in Shenandoah Valley, Eden’s Uncle Kyle presents her with the first of many handwritten journals penned by her mother. Shocked and surprised, Eden dives in, learning more about her mother than she ever imagined.

Through, Kate Swift’s journals we learn that her perceived eccentricity hid a deeply troubling and debilitating mental illness. Finding solace, alone, in her cave, she is fearful of the outside world. A world, Kyle desperately wants her to see and experience. Her struggles with mental illness are poignantly illustrated and crafted.

While staying with her Uncle Kyle, Eden meets Ben Alexander, both are running from pasts that have nearly broken them. Together, they attempt to re-learn how to trust. And love. However, the obstacles and challenges prove to be more than either can handle. One of them will be forced to make life altering decisions and a leap of faith that may be asking too much…

So many twists and turns…LOVED this book. A lot
.

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