It’s time for a reunion
Lindsey hasn’t spoken to Rachael in twenty years, not since her brother’s 18th birthday party at their parents’ remote country house. A night that shattered so many friendships – and left Rachel’s father dead.
Now Thornbury Hall is up for sale, and the old gang are back there, together again. A weekend to say goodbye to the old place, to talk about the past. But twenty years of secrets aren’t given up lightly. Some won’t speak about what happened that night. While others want to ensure that no one does. Surviving the weekend is going to depend on whether you can keep a secret . . . (Goodreads)
Reading “Can You Keep a Secret?”, I couldn’t help but draw strong comparisons to Agatha Christies “And Then There Were None”. Although in Christies book, the group that gathered in the stately home, were relative strangers, in Can You Keep A Secret, the group were all friends from high school, having one last hurrah before the house sale is finalised.
Like a lot of these types of books, secrets that have long been buried have a way of being unearthed and causing a lot of conflict and upset. Since the book is told over two-time periods, you see how friendships between some of the group have been broken. However, it was so easy to make assumptions on the causes behind the various relationships broke. Perry manages to lead you down this path and I quickly decided who the victim or innocent party in the events from the past was.
When a “tragic” accident happens during the weekends activities, there is a sinister turn and I identified two people who could be the perpetrator. The reasons why still eluded me, but there was just something going on.
When the truth is finally revealed, it did take me by surprise and forced me to re-evaluate my opinions of that character. I had pegged them as an innocent party and almost the victim of past events. Everything was framed in this way, so to see their true nature was shocking to say the least. With everyone who knew the truth dead, it seemed that they got away scot free and I felt that there was a chance that they would not hesitate to take action to make sure the truth isn’t revealed.
The main character in this book, Lindsey, is your window into this world. She is a character that you become very intimate with and her opinion tainted my views on the other characters. This gives a very biased view of the others and it did influence who I thought may not only have killed one of the group, but also may be the person behind the “suicide” of Patrick and Rachels father. With the fact that Lindsay has a serious health issue, it did cast doubt over some of the things that happened to Lindsay, especially in her room.
“Can You Keep A Secret?” was really enjoyable and most of the loose ends were tied up very neatly. It did seem slightly rushed near the end of the book, but it didn’t affect my feelings about it. The bait and switch was very clever, which I never saw coming. There are no hints on the truth till the very end and even when I reflected back on the book, it was still a bolt out of the blue.
This was my first book by this writing duo (I found out that Karen Perry is actually two people), and I would pick up more by them. It s clear they have a knack for writing a story that takes you in an unexpected direction.