Saturday, April 18, 2015
SECRETS FROM THE PAST By Barbara Taylor Bradford
Release Date: 2013
Genre: Women's Fiction
Rating: 3 Stars
From the #1 New York Times bestselling author comes a powerful and emotional novel about one woman’s quest to uncover long-buried secrets about her family--secrets she will stop at nothing to uncover, no matter the consequences. At thirty, American photojournalist Serena Stone has already made a name for herself with her unique and dramatic coverage of wars in the Middle East, following in her famous father’s footsteps. But after his unexpected death in France, she ends her job at the renowned photo news agency, weary of years of danger. Leaving the front lines behind, Serena returns to New York where she starts work on a biography of her celebrated father. When Serena discovers that her former lover Zachary North is in trouble overseas, she's forced to leave the safety of her new life, and head back to a place she was trying to escape...and her life will never be the same again. As she brings Zac back to health in Venice, she discovers a shocking secret in the archives of her late father’s work. It is a secret that will propel her back to war-torn Libya, risking her life looking for clues that she hopes will piece together the mystery surrounding her parents’ marriage and the part of their life together that she never knew.
Well-kept secrets, passionate love, obsession, betrayal, redemption, and the power of the past to control the future propel Secrets from the Past, the explosive new novel from The New York Times bestselling author Barbara Taylor Bradford
As with the author’s other novels, Secrets from the Past has a strong and determined woman as the central character, with some family drama, but this one just didn’t measure up. The characters were flat, relationships felt forced, and the shallow storyline being rather predictable, had little to draw me in – very few unexpected twists.
A few positive notes – the descriptive writing is beautiful and is still what you’d expect from this writer. Also, a part of the story takes us to war torn Libya that adds credibility and some interest to the storyline.
Unfortunately there were too few redeeming qualities and I found this book to be just lukewarm. My rating is 3 stars.
About the Author: Barbara Taylor Bradford is the author of 25 bestselling novels, including Playing the Game, Breaking the Rules, and The Ravenscar Dynasty. She was born in Leeds, England, and from an early age, she was a voracious reader: at age 12, she had already read all of Dickens and the Brontë sisters. By the age of twenty, she was an editor and columnist on Fleet Street. She published her first novel, A Woman of Substance, in 1979, and it has become an enduring bestseller.
Barbara Taylor Bradford’s books are published in over 90 countries in 40 languages, with sales figures in excess of 82 million. Ten of her novels have been adapted into television mini-series starring actors including Sir Anthony Hopkins, Liam Neeson, Deborah Kerr and Elizabeth Hurley. She has been inducted into the Writers Hall of Fame of America, and in June of 2007, Barbara was awarded an OBE (Order of the British Empire) by Queen Elizabeth II for her contributions to Literature.
She lives in New York City with her husband, television producer Robert Bradford, to whom all her novels are dedicated, and their Bichon Frise dogs, who sit under her desk while she writes.