Secrets Kept (The Hidden Dagger, Book One)

Secrets Kept (The Hidden Dagger, Book One)

by J. L. Mbewe

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Product Details

BN ID: 2940151916721
Publisher: J. L. Mbewe
Publication date: 05/08/2015
Series: Hidden Dagger
Sold by: Smashwords
Format: NOOK Book
File size: 575 KB

About the Author

Writing as J. L. Mbewe, Jennette is an author, artist, mother, wife, but not always in that order. Born and raised in Minnesota, she now braves the heat of Texas, but pines for the Northern Lights and the lakes of home every autumn. She loves trying to capture the abstract and make it concrete. She is currently living her second childhood with a wonderful husband and two precious children who don’t seem to mind her eclectic collections of rocks, shells, and swords, among other things. Here, between reality and dreams, you will find her busily creating worlds inhabited by all sorts of fantasy creatures and characters, all questing about and discovering true love amid lots of peril. She has two short stories published in The Clockwork Dragon anthology, and four short stories set in the world of Nälu. Her debut novel, Secrets Kept, was nominated for the 2014 Clive Staples Award. For more information about her journey as a writer mama and all things creative please visit her at

Customer Reviews

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Secrets Kept 4.9 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 7 reviews.
Shadowplay4u More than 1 year ago
Secrets Kept by J.L. Mbewe is a refreshingly brilliant and utterly sizzling beginning to an astounding epic adventure that emphasizes the innate desire in all of us to do what we fear the most – to truly live life to the fullest. I absolutely loved this story! It touched my heart on many levels and in ways that I never expected. The exquisite beauty and intimate meaning in this tale is just astounding and inspiring! Each of us lives our life filtered by constraints put on us by ourselves, our family, and our society. We do not dare to even allow ourselves to freely and openly dream about following the deepest longings of our heart. The results could lead to scarring disappointment or open shunning by family or friends. It is much easier for us to deal with years of mounting loss and the slow strangling of our heart then it is to risk angering our loved ones and disrupting the flow of limited acceptance and conditional love given to us. However, we need to realize the devastating results of the danger of living an incomplete and unhappy life. While we might be able to fool those around us, we can never protect our heart against the blindingly searing and painfully dull ache that will only worsen with the passing of each second that true and absolute love and life are denied. It will only serve to enslave our heart, fracture our mind, and shatter our spirit into a million pieces. While we may experience disappointments and tragedy from time to time, we must never forget to allow our heart to continue to feel unreservedly, love generously, and live purposely. If we do not, we will find our world quickly and quietly imploding while those around us will slowly back away not knowing how to reach inside and pull us back out. You will lose yourself faster than you think possible if you close your heart down and just go through the motions. I was left breathless while reading this spellbinding story. The characters seeped into my heart, and I found myself enthralled by them. Their journey is not one for the faint of heart. It is one filled with raw emotion, individual transformation, and life-shattering revelations. As a result of becoming fully invested in the lives of these captivating individuals, I am eager to see where their trek leads to next. J.L. Mbewe is a truly remarkable author who has proven that she has the outstanding ability to turn mere words into a breath-taking landscape filled with the most intriguing and deeply moving characters that will transport you to their realm and hold your heart captive. This is one story that will leave you thinking about your life and taking a good long look inside your heart long after it has ended.
TIGHEFAN51 More than 1 year ago
This book started out a little confusing. I finally caught up then it got pretty good. This book is a fantasy with a girl who is half elf and human. It has faeries, elves, trolls and giants. Her dad and brother dies and she is engaged to a real jerk. She feels obligated to marry him. Just when I was really getting into it. It ended I really hope there are more because it is like it just ended in the middle of something. That was disappointing overall it was a pretty good book.
TheArtistLibrarian More than 1 year ago
Diverse Locales, Languages, & Creatures: A Welcome Addition to Christian Fantasy! J. L. Mbewe's debut Christian fantasy novel, "Secrets Kept," introduces us to the world of Nälu. Her detailed world-building and intense storyline is sure to appeal to mature readers much like Jill Williamson's "Blood of Kings" trilogy. Filled with diverse locales, languages, and creatures, this Adult/YA crossover is a welcomed addition to the Christian fantasy genre. One of the biggest things that drew me to this novel was the diversity. I don't think that was a main focus of Mbewe's work, but several of the different populaces of Nälu seem to be based on African and other (e.g. Middle East, Eastern) cultures. Of course, we also have cultures reminiscent of more euro-western influences as traditionally seen in American fantasy, but it's really neat to see this unique mix in a Christian fantasy series. Needless to say, Mbewe's world-building is epic. She's obviously thought out a lot more details and background information that isn't in the book. However, you're immersed right into it, learning bit by bit as you read more of the story. This type of fantasy isn't for everyone: people will speak foreign, fantasy languages and the unique terminology and names of characters and things can be overwhelming. But those familiar with fantasy novels shouldn't have too much of a problem. I wish there was a brief pronunciation guide included, at least for commonly referenced places, items, and main characters. However there is an illustrated map, which is a personal "must have" for a fantasy novel in my book. Like Tolkien's "Lord of the Rings," much of the story is centered a quest or traveling. It got to be wearying for me to read at times, but I think that was the point --to show the toll it took on the main characters. Besides her world-building, the action scenes are a strong point of Mbewe's. They're definitely more intense than what your typical Christian fantasy reader might be used to. It's not too graphic, but if it were a movie, I think it might just hit PG-13. Aiyanna is a likeable heroine. Some might get frustrated with her, but for a girl who's world is suddenly thrown into disarray, I think she's coping as well as she can. My only criticism is with the ending. I felt like it kind of ended abruptly --they're still in the midst of a quest, a character decides something and then it ends. I would have liked a bit more of a conclusion. However, this is a series, so I guess it could be considered an emotional cliffhanger of sorts. Regardless, I hope more secrets to the world of Nälu and Aiyanna's family are revealed as Mbewe continues this unique Christian fantasy series because it has it all: a detailed fantasy world, unique characters, action, mystery, and a bit of romance! [Disclosure: I received a complimentary copy of this book from the author for review purposes.]
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Author J. L. Mbewe took me on a fascinating journey to land in another dimension. The characters will be a part of me forever and I long to return to Nälu.
CiannaElizabeth More than 1 year ago
Honestly, I love this book. I was into it from the first chapter. It might have something to do with how in love with the short stories she published previously I was! This world is amazing. It's just so detailed and there are so many layers! So for this book, the plot is great! I really felt for the main character, getting thrown into something she's completely unprepared for and just having to figure it out. She's such a wonderful strong character, and she really bring the story along. I did have some insight to the baddies in this book, going from what I knew in previous short stories so that was really fun for me! JL Mbewe is so great at crafting tales that deal with such deep subject matter, and weave them into the fantasy world so well. I loved it and can't wait for more! * I was given a copy in exchange for an honest review!
AriellaH More than 1 year ago
Amazing story! I love the characters. Ayianna finds out her family deadly secret. It causes trouble in her homeland. Ayianna fights for her family. I highly recommend this book. It's well written story.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Ayianna is in for a race against time as she and her companions try to find out to fight the evil sorceress. As all the secrets are coming out and her fathers death can Ayianna find out all she needs to know? Ayianna who was thrown in this race for answers and into a marriage she does not want. To find out what happens to Ayianna get your copy to I high recommend this series. With a curse, she will build an army. With the dagger, she will undo the last sacrifice. But first the sorceress must find the secret keeper. J.L. Mbewe has brought this amazing story to life. I so loved it.