Thursday, December 19, 2013
The Deepest Secret by Carla Buckley
4.0 out of 5 stars - What lengths would you go through to protect someone you loved?
I thought about this one overnight, deciding how to rate it. Even though it left a few unanswered questions and loose ends, I thought the topics raised within the story would make for a great book club discussion.
The novel is about an ordinary woman -- a wife, a mother of teenagers, a friend. Eve Lattimore has a son, Tyler, who has a rare medical condition that makes him so sensitive to light that exposure to any UV or sunlight could be fatal. So Tyler lives in a darkened boarded up room upstairs, allowed out only at night. He roams the streets and area surrounding the cul-de-sac that his family lives in, peeking in neighbors' windows, uncovering some secrets that can only be hidden under the cover of night. Because he's only 14, with limited outside interaction, he doesn't always fully process what he sees, and his basic drive for survival is tied very closely to his need to protect his family -- the ones who have safeguarded him for his entire life despite his champing at the bit for a little freedom and a normal existence. His desire to experience the normal joys of growing up is hampered by the fact that those with XP rarely make it to age 20 so he lives with the constant threat of death.
One stormy evening, Eve is on her way to the airport when something happens that will change the course of her life and all of those around her. The decisions she makes and the resultant consequences strain and rip the fabric of her relationships in her family and throughout the neighborhood. Does anyone really have control over another person -- and how can a mother fail to protect her child no matter what the cost? What secrets would you keep? What lies would you tell?
I think that it is true that you never really know another person -- you know what you are allowed to know. There are some things that people keep in the deep, dark recesses of their hearts and souls that are never let out to see the light of day. What are yours?
I really enjoyed this novel and will think about it for a long time to come. I had previously read Buckley's other novel: The Things that Keep Us Here, so I was happy to see that she had written another. Both of these books dealt with ordinary women forced to extremes by things that happen to their families. Highly recommended!
Thank you to LibraryThing Early Reviewer program for the ARC to review.