Cover Image: No More Secrets

No More Secrets

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Member Reviews

I really enjoyed this story about Angelica Delfino and her three nieces, because it focuses on the bonds between women in a family and that old-fashioned sense of the elders sharing their wisdom about life with the next generation. This is a family drama where Angelica senses all three of her nieces having problems and feels that by sharing her life story it might help them. I love when characters go on a journey of personal growth and this was definitely the case here, plus a sense of giving our modern day problems -often self-made - a little perspective. Angelica had planned to take her secrets to the grave and what unfolds is a heartbreaking tale of loving someone you shouldn’t, loss and life as an immigrant. However, one secret remains untold. 

Angelica is the ultimate family matriarch and is so warm and loving that it would be a really hard reader who doesn’t fall in love with her. She is a fully rounded character and possibly a little bit hard to refuse. When she asks that her nieces come to visit her as she’s dying, with the proviso that they have to share a secret, none of them refuse. Each sister has a nickname: Bossy Pants, Wild Woman and Madonna. This gives some idea as to their characters. I love that these women are all in their forties too, showing that books about older women can be interesting, thought  provoking and a really good read -something that gets forgotten at times. I genuinely believe that there are people put into our lives for a reason and Angelica knows this more than most as she had guidance from one of these angels when she felt lost. Sometimes all we need to share and solve our problems is a safe space and permission to unburden without any judgement and that’s what the women give each other here. There’s a piece of guidance given by a priest to Angelica and I loved the first line ‘ you alone are enough’. It’s something I say to my eldest stepdaughter when she’s anxious or struggling with perfectionism. I tell her that she is enough for this world and worthy of being loved just as she is. In fact it’s what her father had engraved on the inside of my wedding ring - he wanted to remind me that he loved me everyday ‘just as you are’. I think women need to hear this more than men and I know it’s something I repeat to my women clients all the time. In hearing this the nieces in the novel can unburden themselves without worry and the growth that comes from that is enormous. ‘Bossy Pants’ particularly has a difficult temperament and wants to portray her life as picture perfect when it’s anything but. This story is about more than these four women’s individual lives, it’s about what it takes to be a woman and the inner strength and adaptability that’s needed to survive everything we go through.

I loved reading about what it was like to be a young woman in 1950s Italy and to relocate across the world to Canada and start again. I felt that each character grew on me slowly as they unburdened, until I felt I could happily have sat with them. A lot of my workshops focus on women breaking away from stereotypes or family/society expectations and be their authentic self. That’s what this book does. These women are freed by what they learn, so i was interested to see what would happen if Angelica told her final secret. Then ending did bring a lump to my throat and I didn’t want to leave these women behind.
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Beautifully written story of family, history, love and loss. You’ll feel all the emotions when you read this one. The characters were so different from each other, it gave real depth to the story.
Thank you NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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Angelica is ill and at the end of her life. She has three nieces whom she is close to and she also knows that each of them is harbouring a secret, some of which are sad and which cannot be openly discussed.

She invites them all to a weekend at her home, knowing that this will be the last one she has, and hoping for a settlement both in her mind and her nieces that she has done the best she has for them. She herself has secrets, which she had hoped to carry to the grave but she now knows that talking about her own will help her girls to unburden themselves.

The weekend starts out badly. Each niece has a difficult temperament and one particularly is bossy. She also wants to portray her life as picture perfect and when her Aunt starts her story she is alternately shocked and delighted at the news. One by one each niece tells her hidden story, and a definitely a rapport and peace is established.

More than just secrets the story is about being a woman whether it was a hundred years ago or today. The hardships, the strengths you have to dig out to keep on going and the need to survive society's quips and barbs. Most importantly the strength of being united as a family.
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Grab a strong espresso and a box of Baci Perugina and let Joanne Guidoccio mesmerize you with her heartwarming and empowering tale in No More Secrets on bookshelves now! 

Eighty-five-year-old Italian matriarch, Angelina, has been fighting cancer and knows that her days are numbered. In an effort to bring her family together and spend her last days in peace, she invites her three nieces for the weekend. The two requests? Nobody can know about the weekend and everyone has to share a secret. Would you be up for it?

Guidoccio’s delightful and endearing tale will instantly pull at your heartstrings. Her rich characters, although flawed, had depth and heart making you wish you’d brought your pajamas for the sleepover! The endearing Zia Angelina has so much love to share; you can almost feel her arms reach out of the pages and hug you. She’s lived a full life and knows how important love and guidance are to those who are lost. After all, she’s had the guidance of an ‘angel’ in her life when all seemed to be falling apart. Her nieces may not be willing to admit it yet, but they are lost and need guidance. The nieces, all in their 40s, are each facing their own challenges and bearing their secrets alone. As their auntie opens her heart and shares her life story, full of secrets, they feel safe and begin to unburden themselves. Shedding their nicknames, Bossy Pants, Wild Woman and Madonna, won’t be all they get rid of this weekend! 

You’ll be reminded (1) how foolish it is to make assumptions and how dangerous it is to act without finding out facts, (2) that sharing is indeed caring, (3) that we can offer to help each other bear or shed burdens and make the load lighter and (4) how important it is to share your authentic self. I shed a tear myself when I read Father Antonio’s advice to Zia Angelina 60 years ago: “You alone are enough. Don’t ever forget that, and don’t let anyone else tell you otherwise.” We all need people in our corner who fight for us, encourage us to grow and cheer us to claim empowerment for ourselves. 

I related to the story because, like Zia Angelina, my family emigrated from Europe to Canada. When I read about her struggles, it brought to mind conversations with my parents about early days in Canada. I loved reading about places I recognized and was thankful for people who welcomed us to this country 46 years ago. I hope one day to be a ‘Zia Angelina’ to my niece. But most of all, Zia Angelina seemed to know exactly what I needed to hear and my heart accepted it graciously. 

Thank you to Joanne Guidoccio, Netgalley and Soul Mate Publishing for this gift in exchange for an honest review.
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I’m not sure what I expected when I started reading this book, but surely wasn’t prepared for the emotional attachment I felt with the characters. Angelica was indeed watched over by angels. To experience love, loss, love and again loss at such a young age. But to believe in yourself and your strength to know at that time what you wanted from life. And to share your secrets and past to help loved ones be brave enough to confront their own. To live life to its fullest potential and prosper, but not afraid to admit stumbling on the way. 
  I will take many parts of this book in my heart forever. Perhaps a little angel of my own, having been blessed enough to discover this book. 

I voluntarily reviewed a copy of this book provided by NetGalley.
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Every family has secrets and it is time for Angelica to reveal hers to her three nieces. At Christmas, she noticed something was troubling each of them. Angelica is dying and she wants to help her "daughters of her heats" to heal and move on. She sends an email for them to come for a week end, and reluctantly they agree. As Angelica reveals her secret, the younger women feel freer to share what is troubling them. Together they plan to face their issues and work together to make things better.

Angelica and her sisters were emigrants from Italy to Canada in the 1950s, In No More Secrets by Joanne Guidoccio, you will learn about Angelica's story in Italy, and her unknown affair, and her remarkable life in Canada. People came into her life just when she needed them. She called them her angels. Her nieces are encouraged by her strong and resilient life.
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Oh my goodness....I really enjoyed this story!
Definitely a must read!
A very beautiful, heartwarming story full of family values and love.  Also, full of lots of intriguing and interesting secrets.
The characters personalities came across so clear and realistic, I felt I knew them personally.
The story revolves around a matriarch who asks her three nieces to come visit her as she is very ill and she wants them all share their secrets with each other.  Her own secrets she thought she’d never share are now shared to her nieces.  As each one shares their secrets, their flaws are exposed and solutions are decided on.
I was sad when the story ended.  It touched me in many ways.  
I recommend you pick up No More Secrets if you enjoy a well written, emotionally charged woman’s fiction.
Many thanks to NetGalley, the publisher and author for the opportunity to read No More Secrets for my honest review.  All opinions expressed are my own.
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