Wednesday, July 03, 2013

Book Review ~ House of Secrets by Tracie Peterson

Bailee Cooper is an up and coming editor and she is thrilled when she is offered a permanent position in New York with her publishing company. But a couple of things make it so that she doesn't grab the opportunity immediately. First there is the fact that she'd have to move away from her sisters. Though they are all adults, Bailee has always felt the strong need to take care of them and to be close at hand for them. Though her sisters are living their own lives she just can't seem to make that break. And secondly, there is the matter of Mark Delahunt, her boss's son who is heir to the publishing company. He is attractive and single and he seems to have taken to Bailee. But Bailee is just not about to get into a relationship. Her past interferes with that and she has settled the fact that she will never be in a relationship.

 In the midst of trying to make this life changing decision at work, Bailee's father decides to round everyone up at the old vacation house in Washington so that he can share some news. The same house that no one in the family has returned to since their mother died.  With no choice but to go, Bailee puts her career on a short hold and goes to see what is up. But the memories and secrets from the family's past threatens to undo them all and the truth must come out. But the truth will also make them all question what they've really believed all these years.

 Lately I seem to be choosing books that explore mental illness within a family. This is another of those books and it is written with a Christian worldview. My last book dealt with OCD and this one delves into the world of paranoid schizophrenia and it's devastating effects upon a family. Though the mother who suffered from the disease died when Bailee was just a child, the legacy of the disease and the effects are seen throughout Bailee's life. Her whole adulthood and personality is a result of everything she experienced as a child. Secrets abound in the family, even amonst themselves, that have dictated even how they relate to one another. But it all comes to a head when their father calls them together to share what should have been happy news. It's a very emotional book as the family works through the constant feelings and memories that keep cropping up over the weekend. I felt very drawn towards the characters and could understand where each of them would be coming from, and the hurt and shame and pressure each of them felt. At times the younger sister's reactions made me mad but then I'd remember that she really was too young to remember and so she was dealing with a whole lot of confusion thrown into the mix. And in the midst of it all Bailee is confronted with and struggles to figure out what she believes about God and about relationships. A good read and I finished it quite quickly as I just had to know what would happen.


Faith said...

This sounds like another good one! We will be going to day's again on fri to do more flood clean up so I will peruse his shelves to see if he has this one. He has several of her novels as mom and he enjoyed this author. Thanks for the review!

Barbara H. said...

I had seen this and wondered about it - I like a lot of Tracie's books. I hadn't realized it was about mental illness (or the effects of it on a family).

Gattina said...

No Friday's Fave Five today ?