By Camille Eide
Josie Norris became an instant mommy when her twin sister Nadine handed over her newborn son and vanished. What Josie saw as a temporary arrangement grew into a mother-son bond too deep to uproot. But with her irrational sister threatening to steal him back, Josie has been living the last few years with Kennedy in hiding, afraid to go home.
When Aunt Libby—the only person who knows the truth about Kennedy—suffers a traumatic head injury, Josie rushes to her McKenzie River home to help Gram care for the woman who raised her. But not only is Libby’s injury causing family secrets to spill, it’s forcing Josie to see the women in her life in a new light.
Will—a ranger who Kennedy adores and who Josie is determined not to—is desperate to help the woman who has stolen his affections. But can Josie ever truly be authentic with the man she loves? With her son’s fate hanging in the balance, she is faced with the choice to risk everything she loves in order to bridge the most impossible gulfs.
In this story of mothers, daughters, and sisters, Josie must find the grace to forgive people for not being who she needed them to be…and the courage to surrender her fears to the God who has never once left her side.
Camille weaves such realistic stories for her characters bringing amazing depth to their lives. You’ll find yourself emotionally fully invested in Josie and Kennedy and unable to put the book down. God, His word, and his provision have been beautifully woven through every chapter of this story and gently reminds us of his great love for each of us in even our most flawed state. You’ll set down this book feeling warmed by God’s presence, moved by his love, and possibly exhausted by staying up all night to finish like me.
Psalms 139: 15-16 My frame was not hidden from you when I was made in the Secret Place, when I was woven together in the depths of the earth. Your eyes saw my unformed body; all the days ordained for me were written in your book before one of them came to be. (this verse was at the beginning of the book).
The Secret Place is a beautiful story about family, love and forgiveness. Twin sisters name Josie and Nadine are dropped by their mother to live with their Aunt Libby and Gram. I loved all the characters in this book. The Secret Place does touch on some sensitive topics but the author does an amazing job writing those topics. My emotions were all over the place. I love that when an author is able to make me feel what the characters are feeling. This book is a must read. I highly recommend it.
“It’s okay to mourn our losses and missed dreams and unmet expectations, but then, we need to wash our face, breathe deep, and embrace the life and the gifts and the blessings that God HAS given us. Embrace life and live.”
This is the first book by Camille Eide I have read and I can see why many people love her writing. Her characters are real, raw, and lovable; though written in third person, I felt like the characters revealed themselves as in first person, which solidified my connection with them. The plot moves at a good pace and the internal dialogues are snarky and fun. The author addresses deep topics like coping with dementia and brain injury, soul-shattering grief and loss and rejection, but also hope, saving grace and peace of God through the everyday life of three generations of women in their past with their secrets and their present/future with reconciliation and forgiveness.
I particularly enjoyed getting to know Will’s character who is sweet, strong, upright, devoted, and faithful but still in need of healing that comes from forgiving. His struggle with bitterness of his past is every believer’s struggle when there is someone we have a hard time forgiving. Josie is a caring heroine who puts her life on hold to care for her family. The secondary characters (Josie’s grandmother and aunt and twin sister) become dear as the story and generations of secrets unfold.
I received the book from WhiteFire Publishing via JustRead Publicity Tours and was under no obligation to post a positive comment. All opinions are solely my own.