50 in 2012: Book Twenty Nine

Best Kept SecretBest Kept Secret by Amy Hatvany

My rating: 4 of 5 stars

“We’re only as sick as our secrets”…

An ingenuous tale that illustrates the depths of despair and grief involved with alcoholism and the struggle to conquer the addiction. Cadence’s honest and raw story brought tears to my eyes and broke my heart. There were times I wanted to shake her, hold her, yell at her. Her struggle with alcoholism was painfully crafted with such realism, it was hard to close the book upon reading the last page knowing her struggle would never really end.

A horrifically bad drinking binge brings the scope of Cadence’s problem to a head as she blacks out in front of her son, Charlie, forcing her ex-husband to pick him up and attempt to pick up the pieces of the mess she had made of herself and her life. Stumbling, denying, and eventually finding the strength to fight for her son, Cadence’s story is one that could belong to anyone.

She finds herself struggling to accept her new reality: she had a college degree, owned a home, had a career. In her mind, alcoholics were the complete opposite of her. So she thought.

Profound questions are brought up: the social stigmas of alcoholism and women versus men, moms versus dads, a woman losing custody of her child versus a man. The dissolution of a marriage where people have truly drifted apart, no major fouls. At what point did their marriage beyond repair?

A book that will stick with me long after having finished it. A cautionary tale of many sorts…

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