The Secrets She Carried

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Published by: Berkley
Release Date: October 1, 2013
Pages: 384
ISBN13: 978-045141877



Though Peak Plantation has been in her family for generations, Leslie Nichols can’t wait to rid herself of the farm left to her by her estranged grandmother Maggie—and with it the disturbing memories of her mother’s death, her father’s disgrace, and her unhappy childhood. But Leslie isn’t the only one with a claim to Peak.

Jay Davenport, Peak’s reclusive caretaker, has his own reasons for holding onto the land bequeathed to him by Leslie’s grandmother. Before she died, Maggie hinted at a terrible secret surrounding Adele Laveau, a lady’s maid who came to Peak during the 1930s and died under mysterious circumstances. Jay is haunted by Maggie’s story, yet the truth eludes him—until Leslie uncovers a cryptically marked grave on the property.

As they delve into the mystery of Adele’s death, Leslie and Jay discover shocking secrets that extend deep into the roots of Leslie’s family tree—secrets that have the power to alter her life forever.

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“A beautifully crafted page-turner with many twists, this stunning novel has a simple theme: no matter how far you run, you can’t escape your past. Part contemporary women’s fiction, part historical novel, the plot moves seamlessly to unlock family secrets that bind four generations of women. Add a mysterious death, love that defies the grave, and the legacy of redemption, and this novel has it all. A stunning read from the first page to the last sentence.”
- Barbara Claypole White, Bestselling author of The Perfect Son

“Davis paints a picture of two eras and beautifully flawed characters with evocative and caring words.”
— Susan Crandall, author of Whistling Past the Graveyard

“Lovely and assured writing. Adele Laveau's haunting voice and Leslie Nichol's journey toward understanding lingered long after I read the final page of this engrossing tale."
—Julie Kibler, author of Calling Me Home

The Secrets She Carried is a gripping, harrowing novel about facing the past, family secrets and mending fences. I loved reading this novel; it was a story that was hard to forget even after I finished reading the very last page.”
- Night Owl Reviews



January 10, 1936

I believe it’s the cold I remember most.

Yes, I still feel the cold. I still feel a lot of things. Like the deep down shiver of my sweet little Maggie as she stands beside her daddy, stealing fingers the color of bone into his calloused brown hand, needing his warmth. But there is no warmth in him, my poor, poor Henry, and it grinds my heart to see it. Yes, I still have a heart too. Or an ache, at least, where it used to be.

Maggie clutches at the buttoned up collar of her black wool coat, hunching her shoulders as if to hoard her heat. I want to scold her for not remembering her gloves--and Henry too, for not looking after her. He’s dressed her up, I see, put her in her yellow dress from last Easter, the one with the bow in back. Already her knees are blue with cold.

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