Cover Image: We All Have Our Secrets

We All Have Our Secrets

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Member Reviews

I’ve very much enjoyed Jane Corry’s previous novels and We All Have Our Secrets is equally accomplished.  However, it seems to be billed as a thriller and I would say that it is more of a domestic drama. 
Emily, a midwife, returns to her family home in Cornwall. She has been involved in an nasty incident at work and consequently had a fall, she looking for somewhere to hide out and lick her wounds. However, to her surprise,  her elderly father has hired a young French woman as a carer. Her name is Françoise and she seems to be making herself very comfortable indeed. 
The novel switches between Emily and Francoise which heightens the sense of their mutual mistrust, and diary entries from Emily’s father Harold’s time in the war. 
The characters are well drawn and as things become clearer, their relationship develops in a believable way.  I liked the way that Harold’s real  character was revealed, it was clever and quite subtle. 
All in all, a very enjoyable story though definitely not a thriller!
Thank you to #netgalley and #penguinukbooks for allowing me to review this ARC
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I have enjoyed Jane Corry's books before but found that this one was not quite up to the same standard as previous ones. Having said that I loved how the characters were so real and the emotions were easily relatable to. It started off so positive on delivering the baby and then went a little on the slow side before I discovered that I could not put the book down. All the way through the secrets kept coming and at no time was I clear who was lying and more importantly why they would lie. I loved the sections where Harold tells of his war experiences  as these helped to shape what he was in his old age.
I would give it a 4.5 stars as I thought that it was a tad below her other work but I still feel that it warrants the 5.
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After a good opening half, I found the second half of this book much slower and seemed to drag making it a bit of a slog to the end.
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I read We All Have Our Secrets over a couple of days. It’s billed as a suspenseful, darkly emotive thriller. It’s a story of secrets and lies and whilst I initially enjoyed the book, I found the second half seemed to drag somewhat. I would rate this 2.5 stars but have rounded up to three. Thank you to NetGalley, Penguin and the author for the chance to review.
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Two women, one man.  A cliché except here one is Emily, the daughter of the man and the other is his carer, whose existence is the first secret.  Emily’s father, Harold, a widowed, ninety-three-year-old, retired lawyer, had advertised for a live-in carer without telling her.  Emily, 34, is a midwife in London and never seems to have the time or interest to keep in close touch, but has returned to the family home in Cornwall, because she is suspended under investigation due to a clinical error.  But that’s a secret.  Or does she have other reasons, secret reasons, things that happened in her youth?  Françoise, 21, had come in response to the advert, with French references.  Or is that her real reason for turning up, and are the references genuine?  There are secrets in her past too.  Not to be left out, Harold has many secrets, and many of them stem from his time in France as part of the D-day invasion force.  He was only fifteen but lied about his age.  As the conflict between the women sways back and forth, Harold appears to be both the cunning and manipulative figure around which they spin and a bed-ridden, terminally ill, old man possibly with dementia.  
The author continues her record of one book a year since 2016.  The story is told from their three points of view, Emily and Françoise providing their own backstories and their two sides of contemporary events, Harold by way of his diary about the war.  The book isn’t easy to categorise, because there isn’t really a crime, there isn’t much of a mystery, it isn’t psychological and there are no real thrills.  It is, however, well written with believable characters, and rather tighter than her last book, so not overly written.  
I would like to thank NetGalley, the publishers and the author for providing me with a draft proof copy for the purpose of this review.
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Told from the point of view of Emily, Harold's daughter, and Francoise (Harold's carer)  for the most part this is a story full of suspicion, secrets and lies. Harold is suffering from cancer and dementia and his mood swings are quite extreme which adds another dimension to the aggravation between the two young women.
Not the strongest of Jane Corry's books, quite well written but some unnecessary repetition.
Many thanks to Netgalley/Jane Corry/Penguin General UK for a digital copy of this title. All opinions expressed are my own.
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We All Have Our Secrets By Jane Corry. 🗓 Publication Date - 23rd June 2022

Emma is a midwife and has taken some time off work - under a cloud I may add. 
She goes home to the comfort of her father and family home. Some young girl, who she does not know,  answers the door “can I help you?”. 

Safe to say there is a turbulent relationship between them and also with Emily’s father! 

I wasn’t sure when I started this book - I’m being honest. BUT the more I got into it and discovered the different characters and relationships, I found myself wondering what was coming next!! Definitely kept ME guessing that’s for sure. 

I just reviewed We All Have Our Secrets by Jane Corry. thanks Netgalley #WeAllHaveOurSecrets #janecorry #NetGalley
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Another great book from Jane Corry.
Everyone in this book had some kind of secret and each secret starts to unravel as we turn the pages.
The main two characters Emily and Francoise get to tell the story from their own perspective, this is also interspersed by Harold's telling of his time when he was young in France during WWII.
Clever and compelling read.
Thank you to Netgalley, Penguin General UK and the author for an ARC in return for an honest review.
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The title says it all, everyone is keeping secrets and gradually these are revealed as the book progresses.
The narrative switches between Emily and Francoise and even though we are seeing things from their point of view the reader is still unsure who to believe as the secrets and twists keep coming.
This book keeps the reader on their toes as it is difficult to predict what will happen next. Just when you think you have a handle on it all something happens that turns it on its head.
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We All Have Our Secrets is a real cracker. It starts off nice, with Emily the midwife delivering a baby, then wham bam you're hit with twists and turns at a great pace. The narrative is told from multiple viewpoints, and multiple timescales, including some great action from the midst of WWII.

Emily returns to her family home in Cornwall to find her elderly father being cared for by Francoise, a young French woman. Why is Francoise there? What are her motives?

There are some excellent plotline that take you down a certain path right until the end, and you're never quite sure who to believe (even after you've finished it).

Make sure you have enough time to give to We All Have Our Secrets; once you start it, you won't put it down!
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This is a wonderfully gripping thriller and I could not put it down. 

Thanks to netgalley and the publisher for allowing me to read an arc in exchange for an honest review.
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This is a great thriller centred around Emily and Francoise. 
Emily makes a mistake and is suspended from her job as a midwife. 
She decides to go and stay with her Dad but is shocked to find a live in carer there. 
Emily is immediately suspicious of Francoise and whilst she knows deep down she should have visited her Dad more, she thinks Francoise is taking over. 
When she finds out her Dad has terminal cancer Emily wants to be there for him, but so does Francoise, who has her own reasons to get to know Harold. 
Both Emily and Francoise have secrets and it was great to see them sparring with each other but neither of them really knowing what they were up against. 
This is a great read that I really enjoyed. 
Thanks to Penguin and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this book.
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You know she's lying...
But so are you.

Emily is a midwife living in London and, after being suspended from work due to an incident, she decides to flee back to her childhood home, Willowmead House on the Cornish coast, the only place she really feels safe, and spend some time with her 93 year old father who is showing signs of dementia, but she's not prepared when a beautiful young woman opens the door claiming to be Harold's carer and Emily sets out to uncover Francoise's reasons for being there, but some secrets are best left alone...

We All Have Our Secrets is a two part domestic thriller with alternating chapters narrated by Emily and Francoise, occasionally peppered with scenes also from Harold's time in France during the war in 1945. The main characters are all very complex, each of them with secrets to hide and some to uncover. I spent most of the time not knowing who to believe throughout this story, as both women were very plausible. I enjoyed the scenes during 1945 as it explained why Harold acted how he did, switching personalities at the drop of a hat, clearly still affected by the war, even after all this time. I was torn between Emily and Francoise, both wanting to get to the truth, not knowing how the outcome would affect them when all was revealed. It's a well written, compelling read which grabbed me from the start and held my attention throughout, with many twists that I didn't see coming. This is the fifth book I've read by this author, which I finished in less than a day and I'm looking forward to reading more of her work.

I'd like to thank Penguin for inviting me to read this, I will post my review on Goodreads and Amazon.
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Henry is terminally ill and also suffering from dementia . His daughter Emilie flees home after suspension from her job as a midwife. She finds Francoise has moved in to care for Harold and these three characters circle round each other dipping in and out of secrets . The book looks at how their lives have been affected and how they will move forward to live out the rest of their lives.
Who can you trust. What is being hidden and why?
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A fast paced story dealing with family secrets. This is another good story that we have come to expect from Jane Corry
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It's impossible for me not to feel thrilled at the thought of reading a new Jane Corry novel. She's one of those authors whose books I'll snap up without even reading the blurb, or even the title. I only need to see her name on the cover and it's mine.

The reason for this is that I know she's capable of leaving me in awe in a way that very few other writers can match. In her last novel, 'The Lies We Tell' and especially in 'I Looked Away', she managed to absorb me into the life of a particular character to such an extent that I read the words and felt everything they did. And because the characters in question were struggling with their own dilemmas, they felt a lot. I absolutely understood each decision they made, each action they took and was left wondering, both whilst reading the books and for some time afterwards, whether I'd have done the same thing.

The problem is that, even if you happen to be as skilled a writer as Jane Corry, writing a character-driven plot that not only manages to please everybody all of the time but wow them is something that simply cannot be done. And her two other novels that I've read: 'I Made a Mistake' and 'Blood Sisters', even though they're anything but bad, lacked that special connection. Which meant that I couldn't help but feel a little bit underwhelmed.

Unfortunately - and there's no easy way to say this - for me, 'We All Have Our Secrets' fell into the latter category.

It starts well. Something has gone wrong with Emily Gentle's work as a midwife in a London Hospital. She is compelled to flee London and return to her childhood home in Cornwall, feeling the same thing that so many of us never stop feeling throughout our lives: somehow, if she can just tell her dad what's happened, everything will be all right.

But she arrives to find that her dad, Harold, is not alone in the house. There's also a stranger in residence, a French girl by the name of Francoise. Is it true that she answered an advertisement for a full-time carer? Is that really her only motivation? And from Francoise's perspective, is Emily really the loving, caring daughter that she seems to make out to be, given that she hasn't visited her father in months?

Half-way through the book and I was well and truly glued to my kindle. But - and I'm loath to say this - I'm afraid the ending fell rather flat for me.

The problem, I think, is twofold. Firstly, the character whose back story we hear the most of is Harold's. And while this is interesting, and relevant, Harold isn't the character that the reader really needs to bond to in order for the book to work.

The second problem - unusually for a Jane Corry novel - lies not with the characters but with the storyline. It seemed to be working itself up to a big final twist, that I hoped would leave me gasping. But it never really came. The ending that is offered is believable, perhaps even lifelike. But it lacks the sense of drama that a psychological thriller really needs to have. Think of it as a firework that shoots into the sky at an awesome rate, leaving a trail in its wake. But then, instead of a big bang and a visual explosion of colour that lights up the night sky, we get only a puff of smoke in the air.

Does this mean though that I think you should give this book a miss? Or that I'm any less excited about reading any more of her books? The answer to both those questions is: hell, no. It means only that, this time, I'm one of the readers for whom this particular book didn't manage to find it's target. But I know that others can. Maybe discovering which those are is all part of the fun.

My thanks to the author, Penguin General UK and Netgalley for the digital ARC of this book, which I have reviewed voluntarily and honestly. I will post my review on Goodreads now and on Amazon on publication day.
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Harold Gentle advertised for live-in help as he was failing to cope at Willowmead House on his own. His advert was fairly specific: he was a retired lawyer needing help but he also spoke of the ability to cook a good steak, enjoy decent wine and be free from any food fads. The first person who came to the house was Francoise, a French woman in her early twenties, who fit the bill perfectly. She got the job but Francoise didn't know about the advert: she was there for a completely different reason. Emily Gentle is Harold's daughter and she came to Willowmead House because she was running away from a problem in London. Emily's a midwife and her last shift had seen her lacking concentration and a complaint had been made.

On her way back to the hospital Emily had an accident when a fox ran in front of her bike. She chose not to have her head injury attended to (she really didn't want to go near the hospital) but fled to Cornwall where she felt safe. Well, she had felt safe until she got to Willowmead and a strange woman opened her father's door and asked who she was. It wasn't the best of starts and it was going to get worse. Emily felt guilty for having neglected her father and it was difficult to avoid the conclusion that Harold was not above playing the two women off against each other.

Harold's not told anyone the truth about his health but neither of the women have been open about why they are in Cornwall. Emily had come to Willowmead in the hope that her father could help with the charge she is facing at work but somehow the opportunity to talk to him alone never arises. Francoise came to Cornwall because she believes that Harold is her father. She's adamant that it isn't money she wants (though she does accept a substantial cheque from Harold) but acknowledgement and recognition. You can imagine what Emily thinks about that.

The plotting is superb: it's a book to read once to find out what really happened and then to read again to find out how the author did it. Essentially, we have three main characters: Emily, Francoise and Harold and, as you read, you'll change your mind time and time again about all three. Both women know that the other is lying - but they're honest enough to admit to themselves that they are too.

Don't start reading this book until you can put plenty of time aside to finish it because it isn't one that you're going to be able to put down until you know what happened. And the ending is completely satisfying: this is a real pleasure of a read. I'd like to thank the publishers for letting Bookbag have a review copy.
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Emily, a midwife, makes a serious mistake when delivering a baby, she is suspended pending an enquiry.  Emily decides to return to her family home in Cornwall where her elderly father Harold, still lives.  Prior to catching the train she has a bike accident where she bangs her head but refuses to go to hospital to get checked over.
On arriving at her family home she is surprised to find a French woman called Francoise living there and caring for Emily's father Harold, who is quite ill.  Emily is instantly suspicion of Francois  and takes an immediate dislike to her.  Francoise also dislikes Emily for not visiting her father more often or looking after him during his illness.  Both women have secrets.  The relationship between them is fractious and they do not trust one another.  Secrets begin to unravel as the book progresses.  There are plenty of twists and turns.  The story goes between present day and Harold’s time 
in WW2. in France.  The characters are well drawn, the plot is intriguing and the end rather surprising. The story is a mixture of secrets, lies, compassion, forgiveness and more than anything both women need to find a sense of self worth and belonging. I enjoyed the book enormously.  My thanks to NetGalley  and the publishers for the ARC in return for my honest opinion
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Thank you for NetGalley for providing me with this book for review. Absolutely loved this book, I enjoyed the difference prospective views and the extra layers of Harold's life story.
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This is an interesting tale with many layers. 

Emily is a midwife who has made a mistake, causing her to be suspended. So, she returns to her childhood home where her father's health is deteriorating. Then, there's a French helper of whom Emily is suspicious and jealous.
The story is a woven one telling each person's perspective and at times I found this to be disjointed and stilted, but, overall, it's a decent 3* read about secrets and lies.

Thanks to NetGalley and Penguin for the opportunity to preview.
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