A Secret Kept

A Secret Kept

3.4 310
by Tatiana de Rosnay
     
 

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Antoine Rey thought he had the perfect surprise for his sister Mélanie's birthday: a weekend by the sea at Noirmoutier Island , where the pair spent many happy childhood summers playing on the beach. It had been too long, Antoine thought, since they'd returned to the island—over thirty years, since their mother died and the family holidays ceased.

Overview

Antoine Rey thought he had the perfect surprise for his sister Mélanie's birthday: a weekend by the sea at Noirmoutier Island , where the pair spent many happy childhood summers playing on the beach. It had been too long, Antoine thought, since they'd returned to the island—over thirty years, since their mother died and the family holidays ceased. But the island's haunting beauty triggers more than happy memories; it reminds Mélanie of something unexpected and deeply disturbing about their last island summer. When, on the drive home to Paris, she finally summons the courage to reveal what she knows to Antoine, her emotions overcome her and she loses control of the car.

Trapped in the wake of a family secret shrouded by taboo, Antoine must confront his past and also his troubled relationships with his own children. How well does he really know his mother, his children, even himself? Suddenly fragile on all fronts – as a son, a husband, a brother and a father – Antoine Rey will soon learn the shocking truth about his family and himself.

By turns thrilling and seductive, with a lingering effect that is bittersweet and redeeming, Tatiana de Rosnay's A Secret Kept is the story of a modern family and the invisible ties that hold it together.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Together, de Rosnay and Simon Vance guide us through a sister and brother’s traumatic search for the real cause of their mother’s death some 30 years before. Vance is a reader’s reader, and he narrates de Rosnay’s novel with nuanced tones, rhythms, cadences, and subtle modulations, intonations and pauses to etch each character indelibly in the reader’s memory. He has the rare ability to do convincing women’s voices without sounding silly, and his French is very good (though his American accents are slightly overblown). A St. Martin’s hardcover (Reviews, July 26). (Sept.)
From the Publisher

“A riveting tale of family, relationships, and the eerie power that memory holds over our present lives.” —Katherine Howe, New York Times bestselling author of The Physick Book of Deliverance Dane

“A seductive, suspenseful, and trés formidable keeper.” —Publishers Weekly

“Tatiana de Rosnay takes us on a journey to that haunted place where the past seeps into the present, where memory appears and disappears, and where healing seems always out of reach. With her lyrical prose and her gift for creating deeply sympathetic characters, de Rosnay has given us a hopeful story, as addictive as it is moving.” —Diane Chamberlain, New York Times bestselling author of The Midwife's Confession

“A beautiful and haunting exploration of wanting – and not wanting – to understand one's past, of learning to see parents as individuals, whether the parents in question are our own or ourselves.” —Erica Bauermeister, bestselling author of The School of Essential Ingredients

bestselling author of The School of Essential Ingr Erica Bauermeister

A beautiful and haunting exploration of wanting - and not wanting - to understand one's past, of learning to see parents as individuals, whether the parents in question are our own or ourselves.
New York Times bestselling author of Summer's Chi Diane Chamberlain

In A Secret Kept, Tatiana de Rosnay takes us on a journey to that haunted place where the past seeps into the present, where memory appears and disappears, and where healing seems always out of reach. With her lyrical prose and her gift for creating deeply sympathetic characters, de Rosnay has given us a hopeful story, as addictive as it is moving.
New York Times bestselling author of You Better No Augusten Burroughs
This is the shocking, profoundly moving and morally challenging story... It will haunt you, it will help to complete you… nothing short of miraculous.
New York Times bestselling author of The Physick B Katherine Howe

A riveting tale of family, relationships, and the eerie power that memory holds over our present lives.
New York Times bestselling author of The Midwife Diane Chamberlain

Tatiana de Rosnay takes us on a journey to that haunted place where the past seeps into the present, where memory appears and disappears, and where healing seems always out of reach. With her lyrical prose and her gift for creating deeply sympathetic characters, de Rosnay has given us a hopeful story, as addictive as it is moving.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780330533775
Publisher:
Pan MacMillan Paperback Omes
Publication date:
04/28/2011

Read an Excerpt

12/02/2013
Blending history and economic analysis in his engaging first book, economist and bond investor Martin explains the development of sovereign currency and its critically important function in modern economies. This is familiar territory for both economists and non-specialists, but Martin approaches his subject in entertaining fashion, discussing monetarism and monetary theory, from John Locke to the Federal Reserve System. He pauses to consider “excessive accumulation, consumption, and competition for status,” which he dismisses as “hard-wired into the human brain,” though he fails to consider greed in a world divided into asset holders and not. Martin stresses the connection between money and freedom, explaining why money is a “one of the most powerful and important tools of democratic government.” He calls for “radical reform,” but it’s difficult to find Martin’s magic rabbit or discern what his actual reform program would entail. His puzzling Socratic dialogue to try to explain things at the end falls flat. Though possessed of a meaningless subtitle, Martin’s book is breezy, fluent, discursive, and informed. It holds considerable appeal for investors, their bankers, and those drawn to the mechanics of wealth. 19 illus. Agent: Natasha Fairweather. (Mar.)

Meet the Author

Praise for Money:

Finalist for Guardian First Book Award

"'Money is often held to have arisen as a solution to the shortcomings of barter: traders needed a universally acceptable 'medium of exchange.' In this lively history-cum-polemic, Martin says that the theory is 'entirely false,' and that the essence of monetary exchange is not 'the swapping of goods and services for this commodity medium' but a 'system of credit accounts and their clearing.'"

"Compulsively readable . . . Money is a fascinating and entertaining pep talk for bankers, economists and armchair revolutionaries dissatisfied with the current financial system, and an attempt to galvanize them into action."
Heidi N. Moore, New York Times Book Review

“Felix Martin's remarkable book asks the big question: do economists have any idea what money is? His compelling answer is: no. You may not agree with the answer. But it will certainly force you to think.”
—Martin Wolf, author of Why Globalization Works
 
“Felix Martin has written a wonderfully original and entertaining history of money. If you have ever wondered why the whole system seems so dangerously and chronically unstable, this is the book to read.”
—Liaquat Ahamed, Pulitzer Prize-winning author of Lords of Finance
  
“Felix Martin’s remarkable book Money is economic history–and indeed cultural anthropology–with a difference . . . his sparkling book is worth taking seriously.”
—Raymond Tallis, Prospect
 
"An excellent book . . . Full of interesting history and insight . . . a beautiful and sometimes even entrancing study of human thought about money."
Tyler Cowen, Times Literary Supplement

"Blending history and economic analysis in his engaging first book, economist and bond investor Martin explains the development of sovereign currency and its critically important function in modern economies. . . Martin approaches his subject in entertaining fashion, discussing monetarism and monetary theory, from John Locke to the Federal Reserve System. . . Fluent, discursive, and informed. It holds considerable appeal for investors, their bankers, and those drawn to the mechanics of wealth."
—Publishers Weekly

"[A] critical essay fizzing with ideas.”
—Noel Malcolm, Sunday Telegraph
 
“Stimulating and timely.”
—David Priestland, Guardian
 
“The virtue of Martin’s book is that it exposes the deep flaws in the way we have traditionally thought about money. The exposition is clear . . . Fresh.”
—Alex Brummer, New Statesman
 
“Felix Martin condenses the broadest of subjects into a searing and potentially life-changing read that destroys all accepted knowledge of this thing we sell our souls for.”
Shortlist
 
“So replete with literary and historical examples that the story almost tells itself . . . a lucid, colorful introduction to 3,000 years of monetary history.”
—Martin Sandbu, Financial Times
 
“[Martin] wants to change the way you think about money. He rejects the textbook idea that it’s an alternative to barter, the oil in the engine of the world economy. He sees money as a liberating (though unstable) system of creating and exchanging credit. This original and thought-provoking history of what’s in your wallet also offers some controversial solutions to the financial crisis, such as raising inflation levels and writing off national debts.”
The Guardian (UK) Summer Book Roundup
 
“A most accessible and thrilling read. If you want to read just one book about money, this is it.”
—Ha-Joon Chang
 
“Combines breadth of scholarship with a wealth of practical experience in tackling the most elusive of economic subjects–the nature of money.”
—John Kay
 
“Magnificent–hugely imaginative, clear, coherent.”
—Robert Skidelsky

"[I]n this improbably lively account [...] Martin seeks a deeper understanding, relating money especially to power [...] Refreshingly free of jargon and long on ideas—including the thought that if it’s money that got us into our current mess, it’s money that can get us out of it."
Kirkus

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Secret Kept 3.4 out of 5 based on 2 ratings. 310 reviews.
thewanderingjew More than 1 year ago
First, I would like to remark about the cover of the book. There is a woman walking down a street. The stark contrast of her wide, flaring coat against the narrow cobble-stoned road, is beautiful and evokes memories of the child in the red coat against a black and white background in Schindler's List. That picture of that child, with all of its implications about the nightmare to come, in that story, remained indelibly in my mind's eye and made me wonder if there wasn't some hidden sadness, locked deep within the pages of this book, as well. My suspicions were correct. One of the main characters of the book makes only a brief appearance in the early chapters. For the remainder of the book, it is her absence and the circumstances surrounding it, that is the main theme of the novel. For his sister Clarisse's 40th birthday, Antonio takes her on a trip to their childhood vacation spot. His family enjoyed several summers there until their mother died suddenly and, for them, mysteriously. The resort town sparks a memory in his sister's mind, which is so strong and so difficult to deal with that she drives off the road and is seriously injured. The remainder of the book is really about Tonio and Melanie's search to find out more about their mother, her past and her death. There are no pictures of her and they know little about her. Their father shut down after her death. Shortly after, he remarried and their mom's memory was basically erased. During the course of the story we meet many characters, Tonio's family and his children, friends, relatives and colleagues. There are many characters and there was a point where I was confused about the identity of some of them but eventually, they all fell into place and lent themselves well to this very original and creative tale. The characters are interesting in and of themselves. The scenes and locales are described very well by the author and it is easy to be absorbed into the events of the moment, with the images clearly pictured in one's mind. The story is a tale of loss, love and learning. The characters have to explore themselves and come to terms with their own shortcomings and strengths. It is about learning how to deal with life's unexpected tragedies and difficult moments. It is about dealing with and accepting death and the circumstances surrounding it. It is also about growing up, becoming independent and learning to accept responsibility. It is about attitude and attitude adjustment. I think on a larger scale, it is a story about the trials of life and how we choose to live it. The book touches all of our senses and emotions but is neither too tense or too laid back. It strikes the right chord and so it is engrossing and easy to read. It is a mystery, a love story and a tale of secrets and their effects on the lives of others.
DaniKY More than 1 year ago
A Secret Kept was an entertaining book to read.After reading De Rosnay's first book , Sarah's Key, which was so well written and such a good story, this one left me kind of disappointed. In A Secret Kept, De Rosney wrote the story from a man's point of view. Sometimes this just did not ring true, knowing the book was written by a woman. There were times this man was just too sensitive in certain situations. Maybe this reviewer is too jaded. As for the big secret.... it was not that big of a secret. This will not keep me from reading her third book. I like the way she writes... takes one down the streets of Paris with each book. It is worth the time to read, just don't expect another story like Sarah's Key.
FreewayKY More than 1 year ago
I kept waiting for something exciting to happen but everything was predictable. I knew early on what the secret was. I am glad I read Sarah's Key first or I probably wouldn't have bothered after this book. I just got through it hoping it would get better and more interesting.
barj01 More than 1 year ago
This is a very slow moving book. None of the characters are appealing. I liked Sara's Key. Everyone in my book club agreed this was a disappointment.
msmollyMJ More than 1 year ago
A bit slow in the beginning; however, if you can get through the first 100 pages or so, the book becomes addictive and you can't put it down.
slpeters2009 More than 1 year ago
the story line was predictable...and...dragged-out. The ending had no really excitement or "conclusion"; NOT really a disappointment but this story should have been better. Sarah's Key was/is incredibly-written. What happened...?
bling1 More than 1 year ago
I read this book and was very entertained by the story line and the lesson in recent history. The story kept my interest and educated me at the same time. I thoroughly enjoyed this book.
ProfessorMS More than 1 year ago
This book is not as good as I hoped it would be. I like her wrting style, the details of the scenes that become vivid, but the plot was too thin, and most of the characters seemed to be one-dimensional. Angele seemed to be the most complex character, but I just could not believe that she found Antoine so intriguing. The author also used a few words that were not used in an appropriate manner, which surprised me. I did like the book as far as the framework and how death plays such a major role, but I had wished that the plot had been better. This book makes me wonder whether her next one is even worth reading. She seems to stretch a one-note theme to its limit, so I do not think I will read any more of her books. Her talent seems to lie in her ability to describe surroundings, but not enough real meat on the people themselves.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I can say nothing to recommend it. Boring right up to the end.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Couldn't wait to see how it ended. Must read
teacher47 More than 1 year ago
This was a good book, but not a Sarah's Key. Just like Key it shifts from past to present as a family grapples with a family secret. This is entertaining and De Rosnay keeps you hooked.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I Really enjoyed this book as I did with Sarah's Key. Once again there are family secrets that come to light and affect each character differently. There are some unexpected twists that may surprise you. Enjoy!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Thoroughly enjoyed.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Very well written
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I was excited to see de Rosnay offer a new book because I was thoroughly engaged by (on a variety of levels) her prvious book, Sarah's Key. I am disappointed by A Secret Kept. The characters seem flat, with a whiney protagonist that is often irritating. The slow pace makes the plot seem tedious with little to keep me engaged save for the occasional flashbacks. I enjoy books set in France so this is a positive, but even the quirky French culture is virtually ignored here. In short, I was disappointed but urge readers to make the time for Sarah's Key.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is really good. Although i woild not recommened for children under the age of14.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This book is nowhere near as engaging as Sarah's key. It is not worth the time necessary to slog through it.
Carol Francis More than 1 year ago
I was highly disappointed. There was too much babble & whinning for me. I found myself skipping pages. Hoping to get to a good/exciting part, which never came. I will not recommend this book to my friends. Loved Sarah's Key!
Carrie1230 More than 1 year ago
It was like reading my neighbors diary. Don't really want to know his family history. We all have one. My life and history is more exciting.
WIBookWorm More than 1 year ago
This was very hard for me to read. It had moments and I thought finally we have something interesting but it was short lived. Too many pages of blah. I miss the writer who wrote Sarahs Key.
betgrek More than 1 year ago
I thought this book was predictable and not cleverly written. Shouldn't mystery novels all be cleverly written? I think any book that gets my approval should be well written and have a good story line. This had neither. B minus
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
I never thought I would be interested in French writters, but once I read her 1st book I was hooked! And her 2nd book is even better, twist and turns between what happened and trying to deal with all the drama is almost mind blowing! - MUST READ!
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
This story had promise in the beginning. It dragged on with a lot detail that was not necessary to the plot which was very thin. I really enjoyed Sarah's Key and hoped this book would be as good. Also, it had an abrupt ending that was disappointing.