I know what they say about secrets. I've heard it all. That they can haunt and govern you. That they can poison relationships and divide families. That in the end, only the truth will set you free. Maybe that's the case for some secrets. But I truly believed I was the exception to such portents, and never once breathed the smallest mention of my nearly two decadelong secret to anyone. Not to my closest friends in my most intoxicated moments or to my boyfriend Peter in our most intimate ones. I didn't even discuss it with my mother, the only person who was there when it all went down, almost as if we took an unspoken vow of silence, willing ourselves to let go, move on. I never forgot, not for a single day, yet I was also convinced that sometimes, the past really was the past.
Sometimes, I crave a well-written, light novel. This one perfectly fit that craving. A well-crafted, contemporary story--told in two time-frames. Not a perfect novel, not a tricky plot. Yet, I liked the characters for the most part, and I was routing for them. An ambiguous ending that pleased me because it didn't make an obvious or trite leap, but still left me hopeful.
That aside, I can't stop myself from commenting on how many novels I've read recently that skip back and forth between perspectives, between eras, between timeframes--sometime four or more timeframes. Enough already! It's O.K. to tell a story sequentially, chronologically. Two timeframes, three perspectives should be enough for any book. Really.