May 3, 2015

The Secrets We Keep Tour: Inspiration Board, Review + Giveaway

Hey everyone! Welcome to my stop on the official blog tour for The Secrets We Keep! Today I have my review of the book to share with you, along with a Pinterest inspiration board that the author created - and don't forget to enter the awesome giveaway! To follow the rest of the tour, click on the banner above.

The Secrets We Keep
Author: Trisha Leaver
Genre: YA Contemporary Thriller/Mystery
Release Date: April 28, 2015
Publisher: Farrar, Straus and Giroux BYR


A girl takes over her twin sister's identity in this emotionally charged page-turner about the complicated bond between sisters. 

Ella and Maddy Lawton are identical twins. Ella has spent her high school years living in popular Maddy's shadows, but she has never been envious of Maddy. In fact, she's chosen the quiet, safe confines of her sketchbook over the constant battle for attention that has defined Maddy's world. 

When—after a heated argument—Maddy and Ella get into a tragic accident that leaves her sister dead, Ella wakes up in the hospital surrounded by loved ones who believe she is Maddy. Feeling responsible for Maddy's death and everyone's grief, Ella makes a split-second decision to pretend to be Maddy. Soon, Ella realizes that Maddy's life was full of secrets. Caught in a web of lies, Ella is faced with two options—confess her deception or live her sister's life.


"Trisha Leaver crafts a powerful and haunting novel that will keep you up long after you read the last page. Full of twists and turns and FEELS, this book questions how far a person will go for her family . . . even if it means losing herself." - Lynne Matson, author of NIL 

"Haunting and beautiful, THE SECRETS WE KEEP, is a gripping, evocative examination of siblings' complex relationships. It compels us to question what we know, or think we know, about our loved ones and--most of all--ourselves." ~Karen Rock, Award-winning YA author and co-writer of the bestselling CAMP BOYFRIEND series
"I didn’t come here today for visual proof of what I had done, of the finality of the lie I had spun. I came to talk to the sister whose life I was trying desperately to figure out."

"That gnarly old willow tree sat in my front yard... It was always changing, a constant, inanimate object that gave me something new to capture each day."
"We were different. Maddy was skirts and heels and flat irons, where I was jeans and T-shirts and ponytails. She was Friday night parties and Homecoming dances. I was B-rated horror movies on the couch with microwave popcorn."

We had this planned out since the middle of freshman year. We’d submit our applications on the same day, to the same schools, then start obsessing about it four weeks out.

The Secrets We Keep is a gripping young adult contemporary novel that asks the question - what would happen if one twin sister took over the identity of the other? The story follows identical twins Maddy and Ella as they go about their normal teenage lives. Although they're twins, they are complete opposites - Maddy is popular and outgoing, while Ella is quiet and would rather sketch than hang out with lots of people. Even though they don't have very much in common, the twins are incredibly close to one another. The story takes a tragic turn when an argument causes the sisters to get into a fatal accident - one in which Maddy dies. When Ella wakes up in the hospital, full of guilt and surrounded by people who all believe that she's Maddy, she quickly decides to take on the role of her sister. As Ella delves deeper into Maddy's personal life, she discovers that her sister had lots of secrets and she might not have been the person Ella thought she knew. Ella's left with one choice - come clean about her true identity or take on Maddy's for good.

This book is one of the ones that instantly grabs you from the very beginning and doesn't let go until long after you've finished reading. I was sucked into Ella and Maddy's world from the first paragraph on - and I got so wrapped up in the story that I ended up reading the entire book in one sitting. Although the plot isn't completely original, the author sets the book apart from the rest by creating incredibly realistic characters and a story line full of secrets, lies, mystery, and some romance. I loved both of the twins - Maddy and Ella. Although Maddy dies in the story, we're able to get to know her through Ella's thoughts and memories. Each of the girls has a distinct personality with flaws, strengths, and weaknesses - among many other things - that set them apart from each other. It does sound a little cliche that one twin is the pretty and popular one, while the other is quiet, shy, and does her own thing - which is sketching in Ella's case. Even though some of these aspects weren't wholly unique, the intimate details of each girl and their lives - along with the story that follows Maddy's death - certainly made it stand apart for me. I loved discovering the truth about Maddy alongside Ella. Nobody is exactly who they seem to be on the surface, which plays a large part in the story. There were definitely some twists in the plot that I didn't see coming, which made me rethink some things I thought I knew about the girls. I love that the author added in these twists to keep us on our toes. There's definitely a bit of mystery going on in the book and I really enjoyed trying to get to the bottom of it all with Ella.

Although this book has some serious twists and suspense, it was also a book that focuses on the twins and their bond to one another. That being said, the book was definitely somewhat of an emotional roller coaster for me. Having that deep of a bond with someone, losing that person - the grief, guilt, loss, pain - it definitely had my emotions all over the place. Some places were happy with good memories, while other parts focused on the not so great things that happen. Ella's emotions are incredibly vivid and written in a way that touched me in a way that most other books don't. The writing was incredibly well done. It had a fast pace and a great flow that made it basically impossible to stop reading once things got going. The author used a great amount of description and attention to detail that brought Ella's world to life, and made it very easy for me to slip inside the book and experience it all as if I was there myself. There's a bit of something for everyone mixed into the novel, so it will definitely appeal to fans of most genres. Even if this type of story isn't your normal go-to or favorite genre - I highly encourage you to give it a shot. I honestly don't think you'll be disappointed in the least - actually the opposite. I very highly recommend this book to readers of all genres, especially those who enjoy YA contemporary fiction, mystery, suspense, and thrillers.

Trisha Leaver lives on Cape Cod with her husband, three children, and one rather irreverent black lab. (He is actually half Dalmatian so that could explain a bit of the excitability.) She is a chronic daydreamer who prefers the cozy confines of her own imagination to the mundane routine of everyday life. She is a member of the SCBWI, the Horror Writers Association, and the YA Scream Queens -- a group of nine female authors who are deathly serious about their horror. 

Author Links:
Instagram: @trishaleaver 

Buy Links:
Barnes and Noble

 Giveaway: (10) Winners will each receive a finished copy of THE SECRETS WE KEEP by Trisha Leaver (Open to US/CAN only!)


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