Publishing Date: June 6, 2017
Publisher: Simon & Schuster
Psychological Thriller / Mystery
The Premise from the Publisher: "The detective wants to know what happened to Saskia, as if I could just skip to the ending and all would be well. But stories begin at the beginning and some secrets have to be earned. Angela is being held in a police interrogation room. Her ex’s wife has gone missing and Detective Novak is sure Angela knows something, despite her claim that she’s not involved. At Novak’s prodding, Angela tells a story going back ten years, explaining how she met and fell in love with her high school friend HP. But as her past unfolds, she reveals a disconcerting love triangle and a dark, tangled web of betrayals. Is Angela a scorned ex-lover with criminal intent? Or a pawn in someone else’s revenge scheme? Who is she protecting? And why?" (SS).
My overall thoughts and review: To begin with, I like to pride myself on the fact that I read quite a lot of psychological thrillers. Whatever is new and released, I usually pick it up. I love a good thrilling read and I also love guessing the "outcome" of the text. I will have to admit, the last few thrillers I've read this year, have been a bit lack luster, since I've been able to figure out the outcome and "villain" so to speak, quite early on. I also wasn't dazzled by any turns in other thriller books I've read recently, so when a book comes along like this one, that completely blows me away... I'm incredibly impressed. I also watch a ton of crime television, so I think my deducting skills are quite good at this point :P and when a book just is able to "trick" me in a certain way, and have me thinking I know what's going on and pull the rug from under my feet, I'm just in awe. That is what happened with this book. I've already recommended it to a handful of people and I immediately staff-picked it at work. For a small book, it packs a big punch! It follows the character Angela, who is being held in an interrogation room by Detective Novak. They have a bit of a cat and mouse dynamic which is reminiscent of Luther and Alice in the TV series, Luther. The crime isn't quite clear from the beginning so it builds the suspense, and to understand the real narrative, Angela tells Novak that she must start at the beginning. The beginning of her story with her ex, HP. What the reader learns is that HP and Angela had an incredibly intense first-love romance. It was an all consuming kind of love and as the reader, I really felt like they were endgame. Nothing could come between them. Obviously that isn't the case. In some moments, you really feel for Angela and the situation she's in, but other moments, it's really hard to feel sorry for her. It is such a twisty narrative because you flip back and forth with feeling empathy and rage for certain characters. But the way Nay wrote about highschool relationships and friendships felt so real to me, and incredibly authentic, which I really appreciated. So many secrets are revealed and just learning how things got to a certain point is fascinating. I honestly could not put the book down because I was so intrigued. I know I always say this, but I find it really hard to write reviews for books I really loved. I can't say enough good things about it, but at the same time, I don't want to say too much without spoiling it. It is a short book which is impressive since Nay is able to build a really strong sense of character and world-building in 256 pages. I also got the lovely opportunity of meeting Nay at a book event where she shared with us readers that the book had a different victim and different crime to begin with, which is super cool. All in all, I LOVED this book. I'm so impressed with it and I'm already sitting at the edge of my seat waiting to see what Nay writes next. Please do yourself a favor and pick up this book. Whether you are a fan of psychological thrillers or not, you will not regret it. It is a truly wonderful debut!
My rating of the book: ✮✮✮✮✮ (5/5 stars)
Available for purchase at:
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|A jar of manifestations that was sent along with the book by Simon & Schuster.|
Author Questions and Answers
1) What was the inspiration behind Our Little Secret?
I wanted to write a tender love story, set at a golden time, and blend it with the kind of obsession that can come from getting stuck in the past, or being aggrieved in the present. I used to teach high school, so I think a lot of the inspiration came from the powerful sense of potential that all eighteen-year-olds have. I wanted to turn that and make it darker.2) Which character would you say, you are most like?
I’m quite laid-back like HP; I like the finer things in life like Freddy; I try to be kind and grateful like Saskia. But honestly, I’m probably mostly Angela. With one obvious exception.3) What do you hope your readers take away from the book?
I hope I’ve twisted and turned them, and made them question everything they thought they’d understood. It’s a little book, but my hope is it presents a world that readers can get lost in for a few days.4) Since your book falls into the category of thrillers... what thrilling books have you read recently and loved?
I’m a huge Harriet Lane fan—I think she writes so well. I read Her recently and still think about it. I loved Jessica Knoll’s Luckiest Girl Alive, Emma Cline’s The Girls and Emily St. John Mandel’s Station Eleven. I’ll read everything these writers create.5) Roz, this is a fantastic debut novel. What advice do you have for aspiring writers who hope to publish one day?
I think the key is just to keep writing and not worry about who is going to like it or not like it or read it or criticize it. The best, purest stage of writing a novel is when it’s just you and your laptop and you don’t have to worry about all the other stuff. I think if you hold yourself to high standards and write because you’re enjoying the language of it, the rest will come. You have to believe!
Thank you so much, Roz, for stopping by and answering the questions! Be sure to stop by the other blogs for more blog tour content! :DDisclaimer: An advanced reader's copy of the book was provided by Simon and Schuster Canada for participation in the book tour. All opinions of the book are my own.