Family Secrets

Family Secrets


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Alexis has had big dreams all her life, and she's worked hard to make them happen! After college, she married and had a beautiful baby boy, living her dream as "Mommy" until Colton was safely entrenched in grade school. She lands her dream job at NASA, and her supportive husband, Jay, takes the lead on raising their son. The perfect family, right?Twelve years later with no warning and no reason, Jay commits suicide. Colton goes into denial and blames his mother; Alexis buries herself in her work.Seven months later, Alexis's biggest dream comes true. She's going to be on the next space shuttle! Her victory is short-lived when she finds out she has breast cancer. As her health declines, Colton delves into the dangerous circumstances of his father's death."Family Secrets" crept into Alexis's life when she wasn't paying attention. Will she and her son ever find out the truth? Or is it too late?

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781505663020
Publisher: CreateSpace Publishing
Publication date: 12/22/2014
Series: Secrets and Second Chances , #1
Pages: 466
Product dimensions: 5.50(w) x 8.50(h) x 1.04(d)

About the Author

Donna M. Zadunajsky started out writing children's books before she accomplished and published her first novel, Broken Promises, in June 2012. She then has written several more novels and her first novella, HELP ME!, which is a subject about teen suicide and bullying.
Her third novel Family Secrets, "Secrets and Second Chances", which is first in a series she is writing, was given a publishing contract through California Times Publishing.

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Family Secrets 4.5 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 6 reviews.
ReadersFavorite2 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Jackie Timmons for Readers' Favorite Family Secrets by Donna Zadunajsky is a story full of ups and downs and twists and turns. Alexis Finley has already experienced quite a roller coaster before the book begins. Her husband committed suicide, leaving her and her teenage son, Colton, on their own. And, several months later, she was chosen by her employer, NASA, to join an astronaut crew into outer space. Going to space has been her lifelong dream and something she has devoted all of her time, passion, and thought to over the past 15 years. But, Alexis is soon diagnosed with breast cancer. Her first concern when hearing this is not for her life or her son, but for how this will affect her ability to go into space. At first she tries to hide her sickness from everyone. Meanwhile, Alexis attempts to talk to her son but they keep butting heads. Colton feels rejected by his mother - she's put work ahead of him practically his whole life and he blames her for his father's suicide. But something doesn't feel right about his father's death. Colton doesn't believe his father killed himself. He is on a mission to find his father's killer. That is, until his mom ends up in the hospital and her doctor friend fills Colton in on what is really going on. Can Colton and Alexis build a healthy relationship? What really happened to Colton's father? Will Alexis be able to beat her cancer?  Family Secrets is filled with secrets, questions, story lines, and emotions. I didn't love the character of Alexis at first, but as she progressed throughout the story I liked her more and more. I really liked Colton and was hoping for everything to pull together for his sake. The character of Alexis' doctor friend, Sarah, was genuine, kind and selfless. Donna Zadunajsky's story had more twists and suspense than I expected so that was an excellent bonus. I did get tired of reading about how Alexis had ignored her family for her job. It seemed to be repeated constantly through everyone's story line. But the rest of the story was interesting enough to keep me engaged. I'd recommend this book to anyone looking for women's fiction with some extra suspense.
ReadersFavorite1 More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Paul Johnson for Readers' Favorite Alexis has always dreamed of bigger things and worked hard to make them happen. She married after college and had a baby boy. When her son Colton was in grade school, she decided to strive for another dream and landed a job at NASA. Somewhere along the way, work became the most important thing in her life as her husband, Jay, took the lead on raising their son. Twelve years later the unthinkable happened when Jay suddenly committed suicide. Colton immediately went into denial and blamed his mother as Alexis continued to bury herself in her work.  Now, months later, Alexis’s biggest dream comes true when she’s selected to be on the next space shuttle. However, her world comes crashing down when she finds out she has breast cancer. Her treatment doesn’t go as well as hoped and her health declines as Colton delves into the dangerous circumstances of his father’s death. What will happen to them as they learn that things are not exactly as they seem?  Family Secrets by Donna M. Zadunajsky is a technically well-written book, easy to read and follow. I would have to classify it as a family drama with a touch of mystery. It is very detailed oriented which slowed the plot down from time to time. However, the characters are well defined. The author details their strengths and flaws while dealing with a very serious subject. The tone was consistent and I felt that the plot, although sometimes cumbersome, was original. The dialogue is realistic and well done. Overall, a nice book.
ReadersFavorite More than 1 year ago
Reviewed by Eileen Johnson for Readers' Favorite Family Secrets: Secrets and Second Chances Book 1 by Donna M. Zadunajsky opens with Alexis Finley contemplating how unfair life is. Ten months ago, Jay, her husband and love of her life, committed suicide. Since then, Colton, Alexis' seventeen-year-old son, has become more distant and although they live in the same house Colton and Alexis are like strangers. And now, Alexis has received the diagnosis of breast cancer. As a driven and successful astronaut scheduled to go on the next flight into space, Alexis realizes that this diagnosis means she will have to give up her lifelong dream. So begins the journey that will take the Finley family through the secrets that have kept them distant for so many years. Midway through the book, there is a wonderful twist that changes the course of the action and the lives of Alexis and Colton.    Family Secrets: Secrets and Second Chances Book 1 by Donna M. Zadunajsky is a look into the secrets of a family that, at least on the surface, always seemed so normal. There are wonderful supporting characters in the book: Sarah Ramsey, Alexis' doctor and friend, and Anna, a clerk in the hospital who becomes much more to Colton. Zadunajsky does a great job creating tension and developing a story that kept my interest from beginning to end.  There are enough twists and turns to keep the reader engaged as the family secrets unfold and the answers to the mysteries are revealed. Looking forward to Book 2 in the series!
AvidReader59IK More than 1 year ago
An emotional thrill ride from start to finish! Donna M. Zadunajsky serves up a well written and often emotional story of a mother and son who may look like they make up the perfect family on the outside but couldn’t be more distant. Sometimes in life terrible things have to happen to aid a family to understand what is important and for this family, stubborn as they are, it takes many. In the beginning the rift present between mother and child is intensified when Alexis, the mother, loses her husband to suicide. Of course this has an effect on Colton, her son, but Alexis isn’t entirely undone until she receives even more personal bad news, a mere 7 months later that spins her world. Surprisingly you would imagine this a dramatic novel if it were not for the turn the book takes when you get sucked into Colton’s belief that there was foul play in his father’s death. Of course I was left to imagine that any son would rather conjure that about his parent than face the idea that he committed suicide. But then, could it actually be true? The book begins to bridge the gap between multiple genres as it turns from the more dramatic elements into an all-out suspense thrill ride. What I enjoyed most about Family Secrets (Secrets and Second Chances series Book 1) is the underlying current in the writing that is so believable that it feels like it is pulled from experience. The author develops the characters well and deepens the reader’s appreciation of their loss and circumstance with an expert’s hand. You are going to get sucked in so make sure you give yourself a full day that you can dedicate to this read. And…Don’t expect to know how this one is going to end.
Misty-Iputi More than 1 year ago
FAMILY SECRETS by DONNA M. ZADUNAJSKY The cover of Family Secrets reveals nothing of what this powerful story is about. The book is about torn apart family that is still keeping secrets until one day a medical issue comes up that changes the relationship of the mother and son. Donna writes with passion that makes this story believable as it could be coming from the newspaper instead of fiction. The passion that comes through brings this story come to life and has made the characters jump off the page. There is no doubt in my mind that this book deserves a 5/5 rating. PERSONAL NOTE **THIS MAY CONTAIN A SPOILER** The aspect of cancer rather it be breast or other has it close to home. I read this book near what would have been the birthday of a dear man to me who died that had pancreatic cancer. That was Mark Jr. Durrant, my grandfather who also acted as my dad. Given a free copy for a review.
Shaka2U More than 1 year ago
Simply amazing. I could not put this book down. Family Secrets by Donna Zadunajsky is recipe for success in a fiction novel. The ingredients include drama, mystery, suspense and romance. Zadunajsky also threw in a strong main woman character and a seemingly dysfunctional family. Trust me when I say it was a winning combination. You will fall in love with the son Colton and you will cry and cheer on the mother Alexis. Zadunajsky took on any subject matters in this novel and the way she chose to work her plot and interweave the characters were pure genius. Have you ever wondered or had your dreams put on hold due to the loss of a loved one or a serious illness? Family Secrets delves into that subject. I truly enjoyed this books approach to women fighting breast cancer and the strong will to keep the "family" together despite the deceit and secrets. I cannot wait to read more pieces from Zadunajsky.