“There are some secrets you can never tell.
The last thing to go through Dominique Thomas’s head was the image of her teenage daughter’s face and her heart lifted. Then the shot rang out.
They were the perfect family. Successful businessman Ben Thomas and his wife Dominique live an enviable life, along with their beautiful children; teenager Ruby and quirky younger daughter, Mouse.
But on Christmas Day the police are called to their London home, only to discover a horrific scene; the entire family lying lifeless, victims of an unknown assailant.
But when Ruby’s diary is discovered, revealing her rage at the world around her, police are forced to look closer to home for the key to this tragedy.
Each family member harboured their own dark truths – but has keeping their secrets pushed Ruby to the edge of sanity? Or are there darker forces at work?
This dark, gripping psychological thriller will have you holding your breath until the very last page. Fans of Behind Closed Doors, Sometimes I Lie, and The Girl on the Train will be captivated.”
A very warm welcome to the first day of the Her Last Secret blog blitz which I share with, well, some pretty awesome bloggers. If you haven’t checked out any of the following then I heartily recommend you do so as they are all absolutely brilliant at this blogging lark; Compulsive Readers, Chelle’s Book Reviews, Bibliophile Book Club, My Chestnut Reading Tree and CrimeBookJunkie. The rest of the blitz also looks to be shaping up nicely with some of my very favourite book blogs taking part, so make sure you catch as many stops as possible!
I was thrilled to hear Barbara Copperthwaite was on the verge of releasing her second book with the mighty Bookouture. I’m not shy in admitting that I am a huge fan of Copperthwaite’s work; check out my review of Flowers for the Dead and The Darkest Lies if proof is needed! The bar was set, the standard required was pretty darn high and, Copperthwaite smashed it.
I’m not an overly emotional reader. I don’t cry at books. In fact, the last book to make me cry was….let’s see…..oh yes! The Darkest Lies by Barbara Copperthwaite. What I didn’t expect was for the same thing to happen again. I like my books full of blood, guts and as much gore as you can cram in. People die in the books I read, bad things happen to good people and it rarely (read: never) sets me off in floods of tears. But Copperthwaite’s writing somehow manages to do something to me that others fail to do. Once again, I was reduced to a pile of mush as I turned the final page, blubbering my eyes out for one character in particular (OK, maybe two). Which is strange, seeing as the reader starts at the end of the story. What Copperthwaite manages to do through the pages of her book is make you fall in love with her characters just a little bit. I felt completely invested in the Thomas family. Then the ending happened and WOW! Just…..WOW!
As a fan of the character-driven novel, I was in my element reading Her Last Secret. I felt disgust and loathing for husband Benjamin who needs to remove his head from his own bottom and start focussing on his family. My heart ached for teenager Ruby who was crying (nay, screaming!) for attention from her parents but was sinking further and further away from them. Young Amber (or Mouse as she’s nicknamed) was beautiful from start to finish and really shone from the pages. It takes real talent to write a convincing eight-year-old voice but the author has excelled. And then there’s Dominque; totally flawed, damaged by her past and failing her teenage daughter but oh my gosh, I loved her.
The opening chapter throws the reader straight into the action. The police are called to a residential street in the early hours of Christmas morning. Chief Inspector Ogundele doesn’t know what awaits him inside the house, all he knows is that gunshots have been fired. From there the chapters countdown to Christmas day, giving the reader an insight into the ‘not so perfect’ Thomas family and how they have arrived at such a horrific predicament on what should be one of the happiest days of the year. Brilliantly executed by the author. In my view, Copperthwaite’s best novel yet!
Would I recommend this book? Of course, without a shadow of a doubt! You’d be a fool to miss out on this one. Thrilling and heartbreaking in equal measure. Superb storytelling, compulsive and impossible to put down. I was hooked and you will be too!
(A very easy) Five out of five stars.
I chose to read and review an eARC of Her Last Secret. The above review is my own unbiased opinion.
What people say about Barbara’s books:
“Will have you looking over your shoulder and under your bed… Original, gripping, with a deep psychological impact,” Sunday Mirror
“Enthralling, tense and moving,” Real People magazine
“Totally gripping, and scarily believable,” Bella magazine
Barbara is the author of psychological thrillers INVISIBLE and FLOWERS FOR THE DEAD. Both have been Amazon best sellers. She is also the author of THE DARKEST LIES, and her latest book HER LAST SECRET is out on 13 October.
Much of her success is thanks to her twenty-odd years’ experience as a national newspaper and magazine journalist. She’s interviewed the real victims of crime – and also those who have carried those crimes out. Thanks to people sharing their stories with her, she knows a lot about the emotional impact of violence and wrong-doing. That’s why her novels are dark, realistic and tackle not just the crime but its repercussions.
When not writing feverishly, she is often found hiding behind a camera, taking wildlife photographs.