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5.0 out of 5 starsAnother page turner with a “twist”!
Reviewed in Canada on May 25, 2021
Another excellent must read by Carol Mason! I couldn’t put this one down! Loved the twist at the end. Cannot wait for the release of the next novel!!!!
5.0 out of 5 starsBrutal Insight into a Breaking Family
Reviewed in Canada on May 10, 2020
Emily’s family is picture-perfect. She has a star in the making son, Daniel, who excels in tennis and a daughter Zara, who is quiet and pliable when it comes to doing whatever her parents want. She has been married to Eric for twenty years and of course, they have had their issues, but who hasn’t? They are such a perfect family that a newspaper wants to do a special report on them because of their son, and they play their parts perfectly, because they are, after all, the perfect family.
But flawlessness has a way of unravelling in the most unexpected ways. Zara becomes friends with the new girl at school, Bethany, a girl who is a little rough around the edges. A lot rough. And she makes Emily feel uneasy because her pliable daughter starts to change, and not in the best of ways. And Eric is behaving oddly. Only Daniel seems to be acting as normal. And somehow, ever so slowly, almost imperceptibly at first, life starts to become unlivable. Zara is acting out, and the ringleader is always Bethany. Eric is drinking more than is good for him. Daniel is losing tennis matches.
And Emily finds herself torn in how to react. Eric is of no support when Zara goes off the deep end. Emily finds the support she desperately needs in the form of her neighbour Steve, a widower and quite possibly attracted to her, as she may be to him. And then life gets out of control and there is no telling how it's going to end for this once ideal of families.
Deceptions, deceit, cruelty and confusion are all interwoven in this novel that deals with addiction, infidelity and bad choices that watch as a family implodes in slow motion. Its as if the reader is watching a fatal car accident happen right before their eyes, each new revelation more painful than the last. Emily is forced to confront the lies that have held her family together and the lies that will now tear her family apart and there is an extraordinarily strong possibility that there will be no survivors.
Mason has written a novel that is powerful and painful and gripping all at the same time. There are times when the surprises are so gut-wrenching it's necessary to put the book down and remind yourself that it's only a novel. The characters are well-drawn and capable of making you invest in them emotionally. The only way to describe the way the family careens off the rails is stupefying. The sad part of this novel is that despite it being so brutal, it is totally believable, and all too often played out in one way or another every day. Perhaps that’s why the emotional intensity of the piece works so well.
Trigger warning, this novel deals with alcoholism.
The writing of this book really captivated me. It’s a good mystery and has a twist that is always welcome. I guessed the secret Eric was keeping from his wife but felt that the characters, story and writing were good enough to keep me reading and enjoying the book. I highly recommend Little White Secrets to anyone looking for an engaging suspense book that is filled with strong, memorable characters. Ms. Mason's clever look at how people are not always who they seem creates a story that keeps you turning the pages. What secrets are they hiding and could those secrets hurt us? Who can we really trust and do we really know those people closest to us that we love? This is a psychological family drama about deep secrets, real fear, love, and losses. Right up to the last page, I was pulled in, engaged, and could not put this book down. If you enjoy suspenseful stories, this is a book you want to read. I look forward to reading each new book this author puts out!
3.0 out of 5 starsA well told story about a family unravelling
Reviewed in Canada on June 1, 2020
What a story! From the beginning the characters are well developed, likeable until they shouldn't be, relatable and it was superbly written as a great women's fiction with a hint of suspense.
Told from 2 points of view, the unravelling of a family is told while captivating the reader right from the beginning to try and figure it all out. If you pay attention and try to guess, it should be evident the direction of the story... however if you love to read to escape and let the story engulf you without thinking ahead - this would be a fun read!
Thank you Carol Mason, Amazon Publishing UK and NetGalley for the eARC in exchange for my honest review. Always so grateful for the opportunity to read complimentary books!
I enjoyed all Carol Mason’s novels, but this one packed a punch. I loved the characters, and for anyone who has lived in the suburbs the neighbourhood was so recognizable. The tension came from all directions, and then a clever, unexpected ending. A thoroughly enjoyable read!
Emily is married to Eric and has two children Zara and Daniel, a rising tennis star. But soon Emily's life is turned upside down and things may never be the same again. This is the first book of Carol Mason's I have read and I thoroughly enjoyed it. It was easy to read and moved at a good pace. And I must admit I never saw that final chapter reveal coming. Recommended.
A forensic examination of a family under strain, written in fluid, thoughtful prose. What impressed me most was that I finished reading with a feeling of empathy for all the characters, even the less than obviously attractive ones. Their motivation came across clearly and subtly. It’s arguably easier to write sympathetic characters and a far harder test of an author to make us care about the less attractive ones, and I felt this book achieved this well.
There is nothing in this novel that I would want to remember. The few sympathetic characters are the peripheral ones. The next door neighbour lady lawyer, and the teenage son. The message of the novel can be summed up as: infidelity, lies and alcoholism wreck lives. Choose your life partner carefully.
At first I really didn’t think I was going to like this book but wow, it really got a hold of me. I thought I had it figured out early on but there’s so many twists and turns and you can really get a hold of the characters. Excellent plot, excellent characters and overall an excellent read!