See, I knew NetGalley wouldn’t let me down! I found a gem this time. If you’re a lover of mystery and/or romance – this one is for you!
BONUS: Now through October 5 you can enter to win a print copy of this book from Goodreads!
Read: September 2015
Format: Ebook ARC (Kindle)
My Book Rating: 4.5/5 Stars
Genre: Young Adult Mystery / Romance
I received an ARC of this book from NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
My Secret to Tell is the story of Emmerson (Emmie) May. She’s seventeen, smart, kind, driven… and completely in love with her best friends brother. Ever since her older brother, Landon, dropped out of college and abandoned the family, Emmie has put the pressure of living up to her mothers hopes on herself. While she really dreams of becoming a marine biologist, or maybe a veterinarian, her mother expects her to live the life she didn’t get when she got pregnant too young – by a boy who did not fit the mold her own parents wanted for her. So, in order to help Emmie live her mothers dream of her becoming a lawyer, she takes a job with her best friend Chelsea’s father’s business, helping out in the office.
All is good and well in her world until the day Chelsea’s brother, Deacon, shows up in her bedroom covered in blood. Years earlier, Deacon found his mother dead, ever since, the sight of blood has left him virtually catatonic. Emmie and Chelsea have spent years taking care of him whenever blood is involved.
Emmie soon discovers Deacon is the prime suspect in an assault that has left Deacon and Chelsea’s father in the hospital. Emmie knows that though Deacon has a tough exterior, there’s no possible way he would ever do something like this. Her parents tell her to stay away, the sherrif tells her if she sees him she must call him immediately, Deacon is a wanted man. But Emmie is a helper, she’s a fixer, she can’t just abandon her friend.
I honestly wasn’t sure whether I’d like this story or not when I requested it from NetGalley. I don’t read a lot of mysteries, but this book makes me want to read more. The characters were phenomenal. Richards did a great job creating two very likable and flawed characters with Emmie and Deacon. While Deacon takes his demons and lashes out at the world, driving too fast and dating too many girls, Emmie goes the other route, and at her brother leaving, becomes borderline OCD. Despite their flaws—or perhaps because of them— both are extremely charismatic and relatable characters.
The whole time I was rooting for Emmie and Deacon to end up together. The sexual tension was there, slowly building the entire story. The two made a great team trying to solve the mystery of Deacon’s dad’s assault.
Just when I thought I’d figured out the mystery, Richards threw a curve ball and I was second guessing everything. In the end, I was very satisfied with the conclusion of the story. Skeletons were revealed, characters grew, and I was left feeling satisfied with the story. This won’t be the only Natalie D. Richards book I will read, I think she has a new fan.
The only negative, which forces me to deduct half a star, is the formatting of this book. I’m really hoping that because I read an advanced copy, the formatting will be resolved prior to release day, but just in case it’s not, I would not feel right failing to mention it here.
Ultimately, this is a must read in my book. A very satisfying mystery, with excellent character development and enough romance thrown in for good measure.