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Review by Anniek
Faith, Hope and Charity are 3 sisters who live in Busby-on-Sea. Together with their good friend Niall they spend a lot of their time on the beach, diving, exploring and just having a good time together. Faith dreams about submerged forests. She wants to find and visit them all and wants to travel the world. She even made a map including all of the places she wants to go to. When a tragic accident prevents her from living her dream the secrets start. Or have they even started before that?
Hope is the quiet one. She's always writing poems and she's looking out for everyone else. Just before tragedy happens she has her chance to maybe become a published poet, but Hope puts her own dreams aside so she can be the pillar that everybody needs.
Charity is the youngest of the three girls. She loves to dive and spend time with her sisters. Charity also has a secret crush on Niall. When he returns her feelings their young love grows. She leaves her home for studies and to find a job. Charity goes back to Busby-on-Sea when she is made redundant at work. She makes a vow that she will visit all the places on Faith's map.
The story of the three sisters takes place many years ago. It is there where the secrets start. It is up to Willow to unravel the story. Even when maybe some secrets are better left buried. Willow is Charity's daughter. She is devastated when she loses her parents at a young age. Willow lived with her aunt Hope until she was old enough to explore the world. She is a very skilled diver and helps to secure shipwrecks. One of the most challenging dives are up ahead when she will be helping to secure the sunken ship that once belonged to her parents. Her mother's handbag is found on the ship and inside Willow finds a silver necklace with the letters C and N. When she also gets an invitation to go to the Charity exposition from Niall she has no choice but to seek the truth.
My Sister's Secret had me hooked since the very first chapter. I could picture the three sisters perfectly in my mind. They're all so different, but are full of love for one another. Also being a diver myself I loved reading about their dives and about the submerged forests. I can imagine they must be quite a sight.
Tracy Buchanan has done an amazing job in keeping the story interesting. Giving just bits and pieces throughout the story instead of giving them all at the end. Every time I thought I figured it out she threw me off balance with some new information. Many times I thought oh please don't go there because some of the secrets were so sad. It really gave me heartaches many times. The ending was stunning. I was actually a bit sad that I finished this book. I must say that I can't imagine forgetting this story anytime soon. It really was that good.
Review by Suze
Willow is a diver. She loves being under water. She's lost both of her parents at a young age and has been raised by her aunt Hope. She has happy memories of her parents and they loved her very much. Hope is always a bit reserved and they've grown apart over the years. When she discovers that her aunt is keeping secrets from her about her childhood and her family Willow starts to investigate her past.
Charity, Willow's mother, doesn't marry her childhood sweetheart and true love Niall, but they always remain close. He is a diver as well and he's made quite a career out of it. They are both interested in submerged forests because of Charity's sister Faith. She wanted to visit all of them. They're using the map she made and keep running into each other when they want to dive. Because of Niall's involvement in a tragic accident that killed Faith they can't be together any longer. Charity and Hope are the two remaining sisters and Hope can't bear to be around Niall. That makes it difficult for Charity to still see him. There are some things that are better left a secret and Charity doesn't tell the truth about Niall to her sister. A tragic accident eventually ends her life and Hope never wants to talk about her sister again. Will she open up so Willow can discover the truth?
My Sister's Secret is a fantastic book about sisters, diving and secrets. I love books about sisters and this is definitely a good one. There's so much mystery and I couldn't wait to find out more about both the past and the present. I didn't want to stop reading and just had to know more. This story is a real page-turner. It's fast-paced and there's a lot going on. Everything comes together very well and the ending is surprising.
I love Tracy Buchanan's writing style. She's very good at tension building and writing cliffhangers. It makes her stories both gripping and moving. I love how she writes about traveling. It's great to see different places of the world through her eyes. I wanted to pack my bags and go to each of the places she describes straight away. I found the variety of settings and the underwater forest aspect fascinating. I also really liked the alternation between past and present. There are scenes that made me hold my breath. I love it when I feel so much while I'm reading a story. My Sister's Secret has many great aspects and everything about this story is exactly right, the timing is perfect, the plot is really good and the main characters are interesting. I think it's an amazing, thrilling read.