REVIEW: THE DEEPEST SECRET, BY CARLA BUCKLEY

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David and Eve met in college, and their love seemed like the beginning of a perfect life. They married, had a beautiful daughter Melissa, and then a handsome son Tyler.

But when Tyler was a year old, the Lattimores learned something about their son that would change their lives forever. He has a disease that renders him fatally sensitive to light, meaning that he can only go out at night. He must wear masks and other concealing garments…and he must beware of even car headlights. Most of his life is spent in his room, while his mother is hyper-vigilant about the dangers in his world. To afford their lifestyle and their medical needs, David works in Washington, D.C., and is away from their Ohio home for weeks at a time.

Unfortunately, however, now that Tyler is a teen, he sometimes rebels. And he wishes to discover the world that is outside his reach. So he becomes a nightly explorer, with his flashlight and his camera.

Constantly under stress, Eve makes a fatal error one night that turns everything about their world upside down. We spend the rest of The Deepest Secret: A Novel learning more about the interior world of each of the primary characters through alternating narratives: Eve, David, and even Tyler…and some of the secrets we discover turn what we thought we knew into a puzzling kaleidoscope of shifting and mysterious perspectives. Who are the people living on this cul-de-sac? What is going on behind the windows that are only partially covered? Who is the strange couple that seemingly hides from everyone? What can happen to change friendships and turn everyone against one another?

I felt very sorry for Tyler, but some of his behavior was eerily troubling…and Melissa, a typical teen, suddenly turned dark and sulky, and we have to wonder about what she is hiding, too. Alone and feeling neglected, David is tempted by his colleague Renee. I had to question some of Eve’s choices, but then again, she seemed to live in an impossible situation.

In the end, many of the answers came…some of which I could see coming…and others, not so much. An unforgettable story that reminds us that when life throws those curves, we sometimes make choices that are irreversible. How our lives play out afterwards can truly define us. Five stars.


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