The Lost Art of Keeping Secrets
a Novel by Eva Rice
The reasons I read this book:
1. Tanja recommended it to me. (Tanja has a pretty good track record when it comes to recommending books for me to read).
2. I liked the cover—yes, I judged the book by its cover.
3. I was intrigued by the time period.
This book takes place in post WWII London. The 1950’s were a fascinating time and this book is full of fascinating characters. The story isn’t overly complicated, although by the end you learn just what secrets people have been keeping and everything ties together nicely. I loved the descriptions of clothes, cars, homes, hotels, lifestyles. The main character, Penelope, meets Charlotte, Charlotte’s Aunt Clare and cousin Harry—all very witty, clever characters—and the story evolves from there.
Penelope and Charlotte are only 18 or 19 years old but they definitely carry on as if they are much older. I was amazed at how much they (and others) drink and smoke. That must have been the norm at that time and place. They are both ga-ga for the pop singer Johnnie Ray who I don’t know. Elvis Presley was just coming on the scene. I think the best description of this book would be a pop-culture look at the 1950’s in London, England.
Like I said, it’s not a deep read, but I was intrigued and entertained. Something light to start the year off for me. If you were going on a cruise, it would be the perfect thing to read as you lounge by the pool and soak up the sun. I’d give it an A- or B+.
The author, Eva Rice, is the daughter of lyricist Tim Rice (Evita, The Lion King, etc. etc.).