Sunday, June 26, 2016

The secrets we keep by Nova Weetman

An astute reader will pick up the early hints about the truth of Clem's life circumstances in this book The Secrets we keep.  You might not completely guess the truth but you may be suspicious that all is not quite as it seems.  Do not flip to the back of the book.  It is worth taking the journey with Clem as she comes to terms with her complex family life and recent tragedy.

"My mum died,' I say, causing Ellie to stop in the middle of the basketball courts.  ... I have a yucky metallic taste in my mouth.  Why did I have to start here?  Why did Mum have to come into my story now?"

Clem (Clementine) is the narrator.  Her house has burned down.  She and her dad have moved into a drab and tiny flat in a new area and Clem has to begin at a new school.  It is near the end of Year Six and she has left behind her best friend and lost all her precious possessions in the fire.  Dad will not talk about mum.  The reasons are complex.  Clem needs to face her fear and find forgiveness.

This is a book about fitting in.  It is also about truth.  Here is the author web site.  For more information read this review.  Older students might like to compare The secrets we keep with The Illustrated mum by Jacqueline Wilson and Starry Nights by Judith Clarke.

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