Friday, 1 May 2015

Book Review: The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver

The Secrets We Keep by Trisha Leaver
Publication Date: April 28th, 2015
Format: eARC from Netgalley

A girl takes over her twin sister's identity in this emotionally charged page-turner about the complicated bond between sisters.

Ella and Maddy Lawton are identical twins. Ella has spent her high school years living in popular Maddy's shadows, but she has never been envious of Maddy. In fact, she's chosen the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook over the constant battle for attention that has defined Maddy's world.

When—after a heated argument—Maddy and Ella get into a tragic accident that leaves her sister dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by loved ones who believe she is Maddy. Feeling responsible for Maddy's death and everyone's grief, Ella makes a split-second decision to pretend to be Maddy. Soon, Ella realizes that Maddy's life was full of secrets. Caught in a web of lies, Ella is faced with two options—confess her deception or live her sister's life.

I love books that involve twins. I don't know what it is about this sort of... twin thing that I happen to like a whole lot, but if you tell me that a book is around two identical sisters... I'm immediately going to be interested. This is a book that I've been hearing about a lot on social media and, once I realized that it was available for review on NetGalley, I decided to jump onto it- especially since it was around the time that I got my new Kindle. So... that was extra exciting!

We get to see a little bit of the twins, Ella and Maddy, before the incident happens. It's quite clear, right away, that these two girls are the opposites of each other. Maddy is popular and confident in herself- especially with getting herself out of trouble. Ella may have, at one point, wanted to be popular... but she found herself being happy just being someone who's always under the radar. It's how she likes it.

But things change when she gets in an accident with her sister in the car, after picking Maddy up from a party, and... only one of them survives. But all Ella was thinking about, through it all, was if her sister was still okay... and, as she kept muttering her sister's name, the authorities assume that she is Maddy herself and made it known that it was Maddy that survived the crash, not Ella.

Even after regaining a little bit of herself back, Ella decides to remain being Maddy because she's convinced that they loved her twin more than they loved her. After all, there were a lot of people in the hospital just to make sure that Maddy's alright and comforting her for her loss. But now Ella will get to know just how difficult it was to live as her twin.

This was a fairly interesting book. With Ella, I could already imagine how her life could have been as a quiet artist as I feel like I lived a similar life as hers- minus the twin sister, of course. To see the life as Maddy, and how complicated things truly are, it was mind boggling. I don't know if things like this happen for actual popular students in high school or not, as I was never one myself, but it was definitely mind boggling.

This book would have definitely made it for me... if it wasn't for the ending. The ending, to me, felt like it was rushed and that there wasn't enough room to elaborate on it. I can't say much about it without giving any spoilers about this book, but... I didn't like it. It was lazy, in my opinion, and sort of... cheap?

I enjoyed the rest of the book though. I enjoyed the book... before I read the ending. Reading about the conflict in Ella's mind was... interesting. Everything in the book fit well... but the end was like a puzzle piece that was somehow placed in the box but, truly, it belongs somewhere else.

If you can by-pass the ending, then... go for it. It was definitely a good light read and fairly interesting. Sadly, it didn't quite work out with me, but it... might work for someone else. :D

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