One Little Secret

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date: 25 Jun 2019

Member Reviews

One Little Secret is a gripping, hard-to-put-down mystery/thriller book!

Three couples (neighbors) set out a week of a beautiful beach vacation, in a way to have ample time to know each other and spend quality time with no children around. The story is narrated in the third person and as the story unfolds, we see that there's a lot hidden between the closed doors of each family, and each individual as well.

There is a lot of alcohol, and it results in a display of a lot of emotions and tensions - work stress, and kids! And the beautifully planned vacation turns into a murder mystery by the morning of the first day. And the murderer is one among them!

The story is narrated across three timelines - the day on which it took place, the day before it and the day after it - giving us all the details and the story build up as each section unfolds. All the secrets aren't spilled in one go, but part by part - you will feel that maybe this is it, but NO! there's more.

I felt there was a touch of movie masala to this book. I wouldn't be surprised if there is ever a movie made of this book ( I have, maybe, seen a few such Bollywood movies!). The short sentences, the short chapters, makes the read easy and interesting.

I would surely be on the lookout of more of Cate Holahan's work in the future. I would definitely give it a thumbs up if anyone is looking to read it. You will not be disappointed for sure!

Thanks to #NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for an early copy of #OneLittleSecret. All opinions are of my own!
Was this review helpful?
I received a complimentary copy of this book from Crooked Lane Books. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own. 

Fast-paced and exciting thriller-mystery with strong female characters and more than just one little secret.

The story kicks off with one of the main characters, a detective, investigating a rape, which she later finds out to be connected to an even bigger case - the murder of a woman in her holiday home she shared with her husband and two couples who all live in the same street. The events are narrated in two different time lines as the reader is told what happened the night the woman died, but the reader also experiences the events of the following day as police investigations have begun and the people in the house are questioned. 

I really liked this novel and I practically devoured it. It is very fast-paced and, as with many thrillers, you just have to get to the end of the story as soon as possible since you need to find out what happened and who did it. 
The title, however, is quite inappropriate in hindsight, since the characters in the novel don't just keep one little secret, but many at once. This leads to interesting relationship dynamics, since the three couples are all nowhere near perfect and at the brink of separation (or worse). All three couples have individual problems, but they soon find out that some issues don't just involve them but also the others in the house.

I would give this book 5 out of 5 stars, but I have to subtract one point because I'm not really able to relate to the ending. It felt very forced and I did not understand the decisions that the characters made.
However, I do understand that the author wanted to create a powerful female character in the lead as a Detective and she definitely succeeded by writing about Gabby.

I can definitely recommend this book as it is the perfect summer read!
Was this review helpful?
4 Looks Can Be Deceiving Stars

One Little Secret tells the story of 3 couples, who all happen to be neighbors, that decide to go in together on a Hamptons beach rental for a week of “get to know you” style relaxation. On the surface, all three couples appear to have happy, healthy marriages. Of course, if everything was sunshine and unicorns, we wouldn’t have a story, now would we.

The book is told in a multi-POV format and from the beginning, all three marriages show signs of major cracking. Issues of domestic violence, career ambitions and cheating all play prominent roles and by the time one of our vacationing neighbors meets their maker, it’s clear any of the remaining five characters could easily be the killer. My favorite part of any mystery is trying to figure out whodunit and I’m happy to say this one kept me guessing until the end.

Without giving anything away, I will say once I started this book, I had an extremely difficult time putting it down. The characters are realistic, evocative and had me taking sides almost immediately. I don’t always appreciate being in so many different characters heads, but this time it absolutely made the book for me. I especially appreciate getting the detective’s point of view and how her own story played into the mystery. 

One Little Secret is my first Cate Holahan book and I couldn’t have picked a better story to start with. Though I finished over a week ago, these cast of characters, with all of their secrets and deceptions, have managed to stick with me. It also makes me rethink any future travel plans I may have with my neighbors.

ARC provided by the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest, voluntary review
Was this review helpful?
Oh My What a Thriller!   I started this, kept reading, and could not stop until I read the very last word.   This is a thriller that I couldn’t quite figure out.   I had guesses, I tried to follow the clues, and I was so very wrong.   

One Little Secret was a quick and easy read.   I devoured it and then kept thinking about it after.   The characters were interesting and realistic, the storyline was intriguing, and the ending, OH MY!  I love how it was written in The Day Of, The Day Before, and The Day After so there was no doubt where in the timeline you were.
Was this review helpful?
One Little Secret was more than a mystery.  In my opinion, it was an interesting study of human behavior.  Six people (three married couples who are neighbors) are sharing a beachside vacation home.  From almost the minute they arrive, tensions start to increase between them.  There are insecurities, jealousy and distrust flowing.  It doesn't seem that any of them are truly friends and the spouses don't even seem to have solid relationships.  One of them will end up dead on the beach and the suspect list is long.  

The sad thing to me is that I think a lot of the characterizations described in the book are often true in the real world.  Likewise, people are often buzzing around so busy with their own lives that they don't stop and take notice of the problems that others may be dealing with.  Sometimes just one word of encouragement or acknowledgement could make all the difference.

Thank you to NetGalley and Crooked Lane Books for this ARC in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to the publisher for this ARC.
One Little Secret is the story of three couples who go away on vacation, only for one to turn up dead. It is the story of an officer who wants nothing but justice for victims. It is the story of marriages gone wrong, love gone right, and when life gets too twisted to know which way is up.
I enjoyed this book. I did feel that it moved slow in the beginning. But, once I had a feel for the characters, I was all in. 
I felt this was a good beach read - enough betrayal and mystery but not dark.
Was this review helpful?
I received an advanced reader copy of One Little Secret from Crooked Lane Books via NetGalley, in return for my honest opinion.

One Little Secret by Cate Holahan is a story about keeping secrets from spouses and friends. Three couples are vacationing together while their kids are away at camp. All the marriages are suffering in one way or another, but everyone is hoping to put their problems aside to enjoy this vacation. However there’s a big blow up the first night, between one of the couples, that ultimately leads to the death of someone.

Since being promoted six months ago, detective sergeant Gabby Watkins has bee struggling to gain the respect of her peers. Since murder is uncommon in this quiet beach town, Gabby is called in to lead the investigation. Soon Gabby will learn that the remaining five vacationers all have motive and are all harboring their own secrets. Can Gabby find the killer before another marriage implodes? Will these marriages survive their secrets?

This was a fast, addictive read, filled with twists. One Little Secret is available today, Tuesday, July 9, 2019.

#cateholahan #onelittlesecret #netgalley #arcs #advancedreadercopy #mystery #mystery books #thriller #thrillerbooks #mysterythriller #readin2019 #crookedlanebooks
Was this review helpful?
This story doesn't offer anything really new to the genre of mystery/thriller, but the plot and characters were complicated enough that I could not figure out who the murderer was. I read so many mysteries that I can normally guess before the reveal, but not this time! 4 stars.

Thank you to Crooked Lane Books for a free digital ARC of this book via Netgalley.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you so much to Crookedlane Books and NetGalley for providing me with a copy of this book for my honest review.

I'm a huge fan of Cate Holahan after reading Lies She Told so I was very excited when I saw her new book. It had plenty of twists, turns, and secrets.

Susan sets up a vacation for her neighbors and her over-worked husband so that they can all get to know each other better and have some kids-free conversation. After lots of liquor is consumed, the three couples start to pick up on tension in each other's marriages and when they wake up the next morning, a woman is found dead on the beach. As everyone starts looking at each differently, secrets and lies come out and they realize every couple is hiding something.

The beginning of this book instantly drew me in and I could not stop reading, I read this entire book in less than 24 hours and I have no regrets. The plot was amazing and there was never a dull moment when I considered putting this down. The animosity between some of the characters really added to the intrigue and made the ending of this book so much more interesting because trust me, you're not ready for this ending. I felt like I was on a tilt-a-whirl trying to figure out whom the murderer was and looking at all of the character's motives.

An excellent, excellent book that you will not regret reading.
Was this review helpful?
Three couples rent a vacation residence for the week their children are attending camp. Although the couples are all neighbors, they really don't know each other very well.

Throw in an abundance of alcohol into the mix and the differences among them are glaring. There's a doctor, a lawyer, a housewife, an abusive husband, a workaholic, and at least one person who's having an affair.

The next morning, a dead body is seen on the private beach. It will be Detective Gabby Watkins who will have to comb through everyone's private lives to find the killer. What she finds is that each and every one of the people sharing the house have a secret ... one someone might kill to keep quiet.

CON: The one and only thing I found unsatisfactory is an instance where the abusive husband, in a fit of anger, calls his wife by another woman's name. There is no character in the book that has this name. I would have liked to see some kind of explanation .. but nothing more was forthcoming.

Otherwise, this is a well written, intense, psychological thriller. There's a cast of six who may or not be what they want the others to see. Many secrets are to be discovered. This was a riveting read .... not soon to be forgotten.

Many thanks to the author / Crooked Lane Books / Netgalley for this intriguing novel. Opinions expressed here are unbiased and entirely my own.
Was this review helpful?
WOW what a read! This was a fast paced thriller that I read in one sitting as I couldn’t get enough!

What could be better than spending a week long getaway at the beach with friends while the kids are away at summer camp. Sounds perfect doesn’t it!

This is what Susan thought when she and her husband Nadal invite their new neighbours Ben & Rachel and Jenny & Louis to share a rental in the Hamptons with them for some much needed rest and sun away from their busy lives back home.

But on the very first night trouble looms as the alcohol flows and guards are let down as each couple’s hidden secrets rise to the surface. 

Then one of the women is found dead the next day on the beach! Was this an accident or is one of them responsible?

For detective Gabby Watkins it doesn’t take long until she declares this a murder and each couple is taken in for questioning where their secrets are laid bare and issues of domestic violence, infidelity and issues with the law are all revealed and are all entwined in each of the couples lives and that of the deceased.

But what was that one little secret that lead one of them to commit murder?

Told in the perspective of each character we are taken back to the past and the present as we are given more details into each of the couples lives and of the events that lead to one of their murders. 
Thinking I was smart and figuring out who the culprit was early on Cate threw me off track! I thought I outsmarted her again with another guess of who it was but nope I was mistaken again! I love that in a book!

The characters were relatable and very well written. A great story full of twists and turns and that ending was just fantastic!!!!

This is the first book I have read of Cate’s and it definitely will not be my last!

Thank-you to Netgalley, Crooked Lane Books and Cate Holahan for allowing me to read an advanced copy of One Little Secret in exchange for an honest review.

All opinions are my own and are not biased in anyway.
Was this review helpful?
An engaging and fluid writing style from an author that I had not previously read. Very quick to consume and enjoyable. 

3 sets of neighbors have rented a home together at the beach. But then the unexpected, a murder. 

I found the start a bit confusing. The introduction of six characters happens very quickly and it was hard to keep up. Suddenly there is a murder and we then go back to secrets being spilled under the influence.
Was this review helpful?
I found the beginning to be interesting, but after it shifted gears, I lost interest because I just didn't like the characters. Also, I found myself becoming bored with the back and forth chapters between the Gabby's POV and Susan and the neighbours. If it had just been Gabby's I might've been more interested, but even then my interest in her started waning. I didn't hate the book, but it just ended up being flat and unremarkable.
Was this review helpful?
Three couples split the cost of a vacation home at the beach. But not all of them emerge as couples. I loved how the characters in this book constantly developed as the connected stories between them unfolded.  By the end of the book, you're left wondering why these couples ever even considered sharing a vacation home - knowing that in such close proximity, at least some of their secrets had to come out.  And come out they did, with twists at every turn. I will definitely be looking for other titles from this author!
Was this review helpful?
You know those domestic thrillers where it’s like “I’ve read one, I’ve read ‘em all?” - that was One Little Secret to a T for me. Cheating spouses, suspicious spouses, horrible neighbors, fun weekend away turns deadly... this one just felt like a story I’d read too many times before with nothing really unique to set it apart from the others. It’s a quick read and fast paced at that, which does work in its favor, unfortunately, just wasn’t a win for me. 

Thank you to Crooked Lane for an advanced copy. All opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
This was simply fantastic, a twisted pretzel of a story. 3 couples went on a vacation to the Hamptons, and one of them died. The cops were called, Detective Gabby investigated.

My first book by Cate Holahan, I could just read the the entire story totally stunned by the secrets which were unfolding in front of me like a domestic noir movie. I loved the way Ms. Holahan has described the couples. The love between them was just a word to be said aloud at the right time. Every single one of them had a wickedness in them. I couldn't even have imagined how their lives had connected and intermingled over the months.

There were pages in this book which astounded me. All of the characters were educated and rich. Wolf in sheep's clothing was all that came to me while reading this. Some parts of physical abuse were tough to read, but the author has melded it well in the story adding little hints to make me doubt everyone. And honestly I couldn't even guess the killer or the reasons for it. Detective Gabby was not my most favorite person in the book, could have been shown more intelligent.

The dark underbelly of the human psyche shown by the author along with the fast pace of the book made this my midnight read. 12 - 2 am. A book I didn't expect to love so much!!
Was this review helpful?
Part thriller and part mystery, this is a story of three couples who rent a beach house. As the story unfolds, you begin to learn about how entwined their lives and relationships are. The story goes back and forth between their vacation and an unexplainable murder and a house party that is elsewhere on the beach.  I felt it was interesting enough to find out the murderer (which I guessed sort of early on), but didn’t understand why the other story was being told. Overall a good read!
Was this review helpful?
I received an ARC of this novel from Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. 

Three pairs of neighbors share a beach house and murder ensues.   This novel is an interesting whodunit wherein most of the characters appear to have thr motive and the lack of character to be guilty of the crime.
Was this review helpful?
In my opinion, this is Agatha Christie's Murder on the Orient Express level of "Whodunit" mystery.

Not only do you get one story, but its connected with multiple other story lines as well. Which I think was done flawlessly, in this scenario. You even get an ending to all of them, not just the "big one".
Was this review helpful?
The novel was well written and had well developed characters. It is a believable mystery, surrounding who killed a parent in a group of three couples. The novel alternates between the day leading up to the murder and the present. It features multiple narrators, including the detective who is investigating the murder. It isn't a very fast paced novel and is predictable at times but is enjoyable nonetheless. I would describe it as strictly a mystery as there isn't much "thriller" aspects to it. It's great if you're looking for a traditional "who-dun-it" from the persepctive of multiple narrators.
Was this review helpful?