The Secrets You Keep by Kate White
I wake to the smell of smoke.
It's faint but enough to rouse me, and I jerk up in bed, eyes wide open. For a few seconds I freeze there, propped on an elbow and trying to make sense of it. What's burning?
I start to shove my legs out of bed, but the top sheet fights me. I have to wrench it loose from the mattress so I can force my feet to the ground.
As my eyes adjust to the dark, I realize that I'm not at home. I'm in a hotel room. I've been traveling on business...yet I can't remember where. The burning smell intensifies, boring into my nostrils and propelling my head back. Panic surges through me. Fire, I think. Fire.
The Secrets You Keep is, I think, the first book I've read by Kate White. I've meant to read others, but have not as yet. I've known that the author was the editor of Cosmopolitan and that she also writes a mystery series. I listened to this book on audio, narrated by Amy McFadden. This is a fairly gripping psychological thriller. I was definitely invested in the story and listened to the whole thing over a two-day period. Had to know how it would end. I figured out some of it, but not all. Of course, there were a few things that I might have changed or edited. The main character, Bryn Harper, is a best-selling non-fiction writer. She has come to Saratoga Springs, NY for the summer to recover from a car accident. There are still parts of that day that she can't remember. Bryn's husband, Guy, lives full time in Saratoga and works for an opera company, commuting to NYC and Bryn on weekends. The two have rented a house and Bryn is slowly beginning to feel more 'normal'. And then a woman is murdered and everything is tumbled upside down.
As I said, the story itself is compelling and page-turning. I liked that. Bryn herself is a bit annoying (or more than a bit at times). She flips from someone I could get to know to snotty, overly dramatic, and entitled in the blink of an eye. And she's constantly 'fatigued' (way overuse of that word by the author). Yes, she's recovering from an accident, but use a different word occasionally, please! Her decisions and thought processes are good at times and eye-rolling at times. However, this is often the way with protagonists in jeopardy. I was intrigued by the dreams Bryn was having, suspecting that her unconscious mind was trying to help her figure out not only the current day, but also the day of the car accident. So, would I read another book by this author? Yes, I'll try a second book. The fact that I read this one so quickly says to me that she can keep me interested for sure. Hopefully, I'll like the main character better.
What would you do if you realized that your new husband, a man you adore, is keeping secrets from you—secrets with terrifying consequences?
Bryn Harper, an accomplished self-help author, already has plenty to deal with. She’s still recovering from a devastating car accident that has left her haunted by recurring, smoke-filled nightmares. Worse still, she can’t shake the ominous feeling her dreams contain a warning.
In the beginning, Bryn’s husband Guy couldn’t have been more supportive. But after moving into a new house together, disturbing incidents occur and Guy grows evasive, secretive. What the hell is going on, she wonders? Then, a woman hired to cater their dinner party is brutally murdered.
As Bryn’s world unravels—and yet another woman in town is slain —she must summon her old strength to find answers and protect her own life. Her nightmares may in fact hold the key to unlocking the truth and unmasking the murderer.