Sworn Secret Paperback – 16 Aug 2012
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Sworn Secret pulses with real emotion - an intense, relentless story that leaves the reader sated with the author's imagination and distinct characterisation. She displays clear understanding and articulation of the most complicated - and simplest - of human emotions. (Dolly Jones Vogue.co.uk)
a page-turner which makes the reader ache to know the outcome. (Mystery People E-zine)
A family's fight to remember what it means to love.See all Product Description
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Top Customer Reviews
It follows the Thorne family a year after the death of their eldest daughter, Anna, who fell from the roof of the school. Lizzie is struggling to find her own identity instead of just being `the dead girl's sister', while Jon and Kate's marriage is still reeling from the grief. They are coping - just. But then a secret emerges that shatters any illusion they had of moving on.
What makes this novel so remarkable is the way Amanda Jennings gets inside the head of not only Lizzie, but Jon and Kate as well. The difficult emotions and questions raised are not shied away from, and it is richly layered, with many different threads - there is the touching, tender story of Lizzie finding first love; the raw, unflinching view of a marriage crumbling; the shock of discovering that you may not have known your teenage daughter as well as you thought; and above all, the love that binds a family together despite all odds.
Jennings' prose is beautifully observed, with many tiny moments of stunning clarity that will stick with you. There's also humour, and warmth, and although I don't want to give too much away plot-wise, it would be the perfect novel for a book group, as it raises so many fascinating questions. I can't wait for her next novel.
Anna's family are shocked to learn of the events leading up to her death and they begin to question whether they really knew her at all.
Sworn Secret is an emotional read, dealing with the devastation such a loss brings to a family as it is brought to its knees and struggles to rise again. The book was gripping, urging me to keep reading, not only to find out if the Thorne family could pull together once more but also to discover what really happened to Anna. When her shocking secrets began to surface, I wasn't sure whether they would unite the family as they battled to uncover the truth or whether they would deliver the final blow to crush them completely.
Sworn Secret is a brilliant, well-written and thrilling debut from Amanda Jennings and I can't wait to see what she writes next.
I loved the characters, they're all really well created, with believable flaws and personalities that make you care about them and what happens to each of them. Right from the beginning these carefully crafted people feel very real. Although I started having suspicions about characters or drawing conclusions of my own, I was often very wrong, such is the skill of the author in storytelling. There wasn't a single character that I didn't care about, in one way or another. By turn I wanted to protect, comfort, accuse, support and scream at them, such is the way they are drawn.
The language used is just perfect, I think. The conversations and situations are excellent, they're messy, unfinished, with language that people really use, which I think is such a skill - often flowery language gets in the way of a story because it just feels odd. But here, from the language used by the older generations right down to the teenager text messages, it just felt right. As did the behaviour of people and the various ways in which they responded to grief.Read more ›
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Couldn't tell the difference from a new one . Lovely thank youPublished 15 days ago by Georgie Girl
This is my second book by this author and I'm now a fully converted fan! I found this book so difficult to put down and actually felt like I was there through it all. Read morePublished 1 month ago by Michelle
An unbelievably great read, masterfully written and deeply thoughtful. The story of a family and a community torn apart by the suspicious death of a young girl will touch every... Read morePublished 2 months ago by Florence Phillips
I loved this book, I couldn't stop reading it and had to begrudgingly put it down to go to sleep!
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I quite enjoyed this book but it did drag a bit. Not as good as The Judas Scar by the same author, but a good holiday read.Published 5 months ago by Bookworm
First of all I have to say thank you to Sophie @reviewedthebook.co.uk and the author as I won a signed copy of this book on Sophies blog. Read more
It's like reliving your first love all over again and then realising why it never worked out. Gripping story full of heart break and love.Published 9 months ago by Sam shea
As others have said, this book starts slowly but I think this is a good thing. Grief doesn't care about time and this is a family still reeling from the death of a beloved daughter... Read morePublished 9 months ago by Joy Kluver
The beauty of Sworn Secret is in the detail, in the flawed but human characters, in the gorgeous prose, and in Amanda Jennings' ability to write a twisty thriller that is also... Read morePublished 11 months ago by Louise Beech