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Publisher's Summary

Kate Earnshaw’s father’s suicide has left many unanswered questions. The police declared it a suicide, but she can't bring herself to believe it. The more she discovers, however, the more Kate wonders whether she ever really knew him. Her father never explained why he let his childhood home in eastern Colorado fall into ruin or why he kept the property a secret. And he never told Kate about his close friendship with Evan Hastings, the handsome and somewhat puzzling man who lives on the property near the abandoned house. 

Other families pass down their stories. The Earnshaws pass down painful riddles without answers. Kate comes from a family where unspoken secrets disappear from one generation to the next. Evan seems to have as many secrets as her father and to know more about him than she did, which hurts. But there’s something about Evan that calls her back to her father’s home. Something that threatens to unbury more than the past.

©2020 Helen Starbuck (P)2020 The Audio Flow, LLC/Elysian Nightfall Studios

What listeners say about Legacy of Secrets

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Great Listen

This is my fourth, and favorite, Helen Starbuck book. Kate Earnshaw finds her father's body. The police assume it's a suicide, but Kate doesn't buy it. There is no note and, although he had at times suffered from depression, there had been no recent signs of it. She learns her father has left her with his old family home and some property on the Eastern Plains of Colorado along with generations of secrets. She soon finds out that she didn't really know her dad, and that the handsome, interesting, and elusive Evan Hastings, whose property is next to the place Kate inherits, has been privy to much more information than shared with her. She's grieving, increasingly confused by things that don't make sense, and jealous of Evan's relationship with her dad. Her first thought is to sell the place, but after being convinced to visit, she is compelled to find answers to an increasing number of questions. Starbuck does a great job of contrasting the lonely plains, dilapidated farmhouse, small town ways, and the Denver woman's fear of rattlesnakes with Kate's art gallery life in Denver. Amy Deutchler does a great job of narrating. Characters are well defined and believable. Pace is good. It's an easy and refreshing listen.

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Well-written.

Insecurity and tenaciousness keep this story holding our attention throughout.

Amy Deuchler does a great job narrating and bringing the characters to life.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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Warning book is about a suicide

In the book Kate has just lost her father to suicide but cannot comes to grips with it. After the will is read she inherits a piece of property and a house she knew nothing about. She goes on a personal journey to get to know her father better so she can understand the reasons for his suicide but all the time in her mind she feels he did not commit suicide.

When she gets to the house she inherits her life actually takes many turns. The house is dilapidated and falling down. While there she meets Evan Hastings. The man who lives next door to the property and the self appointed caretaker so to speak. Sh learns that not only did her father come to the property many times but also has a friendship with Evan.

Jealousy seems to rear its ugly head. There is an immediate connection between Kate and Evan but Kate cannot get past the part that Evan knows a lot about her father that she never did. When Evan tries to let her into the friendship he had with her father she blows up and stalks off, multiple times may I add.

In the end she feels she pulled even tighter towards murder. The story is filled with twists and turns. The narration was pretty good. As with any book there were parts I enjoyed and Parts I did not but it was still worth my time.

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

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good romantic suspense

I’m a huge fan of romantic suspense, so it comes as no surprise that I loved Legacy of Secrets. It was a perfect blend of mystery and romance.

I wouldn’t really classify Legacy of Secrets. as a suspense because the most suspenseful section of the book was pretty short, unless you consider building romantic tension to be suspenseful. If that’s the case, then this is full of suspense from beginning to end. Even after the initial romantic encounter, ;), Helen Starbuck manages to keep the romantic suspense building in Legacy of Secrets.

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I found myself getting really frustrated with the main character because she couldn’t make up her mind, but I completely understand how realistic this would be. After a traumatic death of a parent, isn’t the best time to try to make life decisions. Helen Starbuck actually treated Kate’s grief and feelings with respect.

The mystery was strong, because I couldn’t figure out for sure what was going to happen. The secrets kept building without proper answers, keeping everything unsettled throughout the book.

The audiobook narration was pretty flawless as well.

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Standalone romantic suspense

Amy Deuchler provided a stellar narration and I found myself caught up in the complex characters, Colorado setting and simmering tension.

Kate Earnshaw struggles with her father's death and unanswered questions. She was a tad prickly, but the author allowed me to understand her frustrations even when I grew frustrated with her.

Evan Hastings was the perfect hero. Patient, kind, and I loved how he handled Kate even when he wanted more.

An emotional story that held me captive and has me looking for more from both the author and narrator.

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Captivating!

This was my first Helen Starbuck's book, and won't be my last. Legacy of Secrets, a contemporary romance, is well written and captivating. Kate and Evan are great characters. Kate is lovely, strong, and smart. Evan is handsome, determined and protective. The mystery unfolds at a great pace. The storyline is well developed, suspenseful, and intriguing. Amy Deuchler did a great job with the narration. I love her voice. Looking forward for more books written by this author and read by this narrator. #Caffeinated #TheAudioFlow

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Finding Answers and Possibly Love Along the Way

A woman learns just how little she knows about her father and his past when his suicide puts her on a painful journey of discovery with a man who both repulses and attracts her. A new to me author and narrator of a standalone romantic suspense were the perfect excuse to give this story a whirl.

Kate Earnshaw finds her father's suicide impossible to accept. He wasn't suicidal and his depression was under control. When she goes searching for answers she discovers there is a whole side of her father she knew nothing about. There's a decrepit old family ranch, there are enigmatic letters with his sister, and there is an attractive, kind man who knows a great deal. Too bad, she doesn't want to trust him and burns with bitter anger that he knows her father better than she did.

Evan is stunned when he finally meets John's daughter, Kate, to learn his old friend has passed. He is immediately attracted to her and wants to help, but her sharp grief and anger with him as the target makes it difficult to patiently help her find the answers and peace she is searching for. If he can help her delve into John's past of secrets, maybe it will help him stand a chance with her.

A death that may or may not have been suicide, old family secrets, and a setting of Colorado ranch country had me eagerly clicking on Legacy of Secrets. I do love this sort of mystery that was more character than plot driven. The hunt for answers and John's past is at the heart of the story, but the romance and Kate's healing growth are also significant parts too. It wasn't difficult to work out the mystery, but a matter of waiting for enough facts to surface so I could. Even though I had it worked out earlier that did not diminish my interest in the story one iota. There was so much else going on.

Truthfully, I nearly set this one aside early on. Kate was a bitter, angry woman who let her grief spill out into belittling a community and way of life because it wasn't her own and really savaging at an innocent guy with her vitriol because she was jealous that he knew a different side of her dad and shared moments with her dad that didn't include her. It was quite clear that neither knew more than John Earnshaw chose to share with them, but he wasn't there so she took it all out on poor Evan even while she used him whenever she needed help or an emotional prop before pulling away and lashing out at him. I don't blame her for the ugly feelings- I've known what a suicide can do to those left behind without answers- but, I needed to see her restore what she broke before I could consider this book even remotely satisfying. And, bless this author, she did. Kate's journey ended on a high note for me and she made good.

For Evan's part it was love at first sight and he was an easy-going, content man who took up the challenge of Kate and her family secrets as his own. His steadfastness balanced things when Kate was really struggling. He wanted to give her what she needed, but he didn't become her doormat, either. I enjoyed getting to know him within his family and community circle beyond just as a love interest for Kate.

Amy Deuchler was well up to the task of portraying an emotional, hurting woman and several other characters of other ages and genders. She didn't over act the parts and made a well-written story shine brighter.

All in all, this was a splendid first outing with both author and narrator. It was an emotional story without getting overwrought and I appreciated the suspense and romance that balanced well in an engaging mystery plot, characters, and spicy romance. I can recommend this one to romantic suspense lovers.

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Amazing listen!

This is my kind of book! Mystery, secrets, danger and a romance all wrapped up into a listen well written and so satisfying! Kate finds her father dead in his chair, a victim of his own doing. But she does not believe he committed suicide. Now on a mission to figure out the truth she finds out more than she is ready for. Inheriting property she didn't know about, meeting people he frequently saw but never talked about and a secret that is shocking, this story takes us on a fact finding journey. Kate has the chance to meet Evan, the next door neighbor of her father's childhood home. While their chemistry is palpable, there is so much standing between them and the wall is tough to break through. I was pulled in, enchanted by the family secrets, the thrill of the chase and the budding romance. I love romantic suspense and Helen Starbuck is now on the list to watch for more.

Amy Deuchler is a new narrator to me and she was amazing. Her tone is warm, her voices easily distinguished and her pace perfect. I enjoyed her performance and will be looking for more by her.

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A Legacy of Secrets

This was my first introduction to this author but not the last. It starts off with a suicide of Kate's father and Kate is the one who finds him. She is left struggling with questions because he didn't leave a note and there was no clue he would do this. As she begins trying to find out why she discovers so much more about her father including his childhood home. When she goes there she also meets Evan who was friends with her father but never mentioned to her. She is left feeling lost but with Evan's help they begin to find out more. This was a story filled with riddles, lies, twists and turns and ultimately a shock at the end. I enjoyed this as an audio and the narrator was great and definitely kept me interested to the point I couldn't put it down. I would recommend this one!