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Secrets of Southern Girls

Length: 10 hrs and 19 mins
4 out of 5 stars (14 ratings)

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Publisher's Summary

In this powerful, affecting debut, a young woman uncovers devastating secrets about the friend she thinks she killed.

Ten years ago, Julie Portland accidentally killed her best friend, Reba. What's worse is she got away with it. Consumed by guilt, she left the small town of Lawrence Mill, Mississippi, and swore nothing would ever drag her back. Now, raising her daughter and struggling to make ends meet in Manhattan, Julie still can't forget the ghost of a girl with golden hair and a dangerous secret. When August, Reba's first love, begs Julie to come home to find the diary that Reba kept all those years ago, Julie's past comes creeping back to haunt her. That diary could expose the shameful memories Julie has been running from, but it could also unearth the hidden truths that Reba left buried, and reveal that Julie isn't the only one who feels responsible for Reba's death.

©2017 Haley Harrigan (P)2017 Recorded Books

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    3 out of 5 stars

Slow but decent

I wasn't sure how I'd review this book. I really wanted to love it but just kind of liked it.

First, the cover feels amazing in your hands. I know many may not consider this when choosing a book, but I think it matters since one will be holding the book for so long while reading.

Second, the story line was intriguing, the start up slow and the characters were not all what I wanted them to be. I enjoyed Julie in the beginning but the more the story went along I became frustrated with her character. August seemed to be an after thought or one not much thought was placed in.

Reba and Toby, now these characters were interesting. Reba we learned about through her diary and the other characters. She was definitely not what others thought she was or who she even believed she was.

Toby, oh Toby. He was beautifully written and came to life. Jumping off the pages through his anger, grittiness and just plain old bad boy self. I could imagine every but of him as he's painting his walls. The paint strewn tank, joint in his mouth and music blaring around him. He was real. His passion, pain, loss. I thoroughly enjoyed his character and kudos to the author for working her magic on him.

Lastly, the ending, oh the ending. It ended as though she didn't know where else to go with the story. It honestly could've ended once the diary was completed and Julie and August left Mississippi to head back to their respective homes, but it didn't. Again, August, as the afterthought he seems to be throughout the story, unfortunately, just ends.

Overall, the author is gifted in word but seemed to have a bit of difficulty with completing the story of each of her characters. This could've been a great read but unfortunately fell short due to this.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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There is not an ending

It took a while to really get into the book. The book needs an ending. I was so frustrated with how it ended. I had 45 minutes left on my long commute when it was just over. I thought maybe the book did not completely download. Nope. It was just over. Haley, please write book 2!

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Loved it

Multiple points of view weren't difficult to follow. The story had a surprise ending after several unexpected twists and turns. I highly recommend.