I am VERY excited to be part of the blog tour for Tracy Buchanan’s new novel, My Sister’s Secret. The e-book was released by Avon on 21st July 2015 and the paperback is due for release on 13th August 2015.
About My Sister’s Secret:
Willow’s memories of her parents are sun-drenched and full of smiles, love and laughter. But a mysterious invitation to a photographic exhibition exposes a secret that’s been buried since a tragic accident years ago.
Willow is forced to question everything she knew about her late mother, and the aunt she’s lived with since she was a child.
How was the enigmatic photographer connected to Willow’s parents? Why will her aunt not break her silence?
Willow cannot move forward in her life without answers. But who can she really trust? Because no one has been telling the truth for a very long time.
I’ve reviewed the book below but first, to celebrate the release of My Sister’s Secret, Tracy and Avon have shared an extract with us. Enjoy!
In the middle of the Aegean Sea, Greece
My friend Ajay reckons the Aegean Sea is named after Aegea, queen of the Amazons. My aunt Hope disagrees. She says it’s named after a famous sea goat. I know which one I prefer. In fact, I feel like I’m channelling a female warrior when I do dives like this, all swaddled up in my diving ‘armour’, ready to do battle with the sea and unearth its treasures. I feel it now as the dive boat we’re on bounces over the waves, the sea spreading out around us, the island of Rhodes just a shimmer of land behind us.
‘Nearly there,’ Ajay says, smiling at me. Without him, I’d have never got on to this wreck dive. I smile back, grateful. One of the other divers who’s with us – an Australian called Guy, all blond hair and muscles – paces the boat, frustrated. ‘I might just jump off this boat and swim there myself if it doesn’t get a move on.’
The rest of the crew laugh. I haven’t worked with Guy before but I’ve worked with divers like him, all bravado and testosterone. I can guarantee that by tonight he’ll be telling me stories of all the times he’s nearly died diving wrecks. Usually that’s a sign of someone who puts their ego above competence.
I throw Ajay a ‘where’d you find this one?’ look. He mouths back, ‘He’s good.’
‘You dived a cruise ship before?’ Guy asks me.
‘Not a cruise ship,’ I reply, standing on my tiptoes as I crane my neck to see any sign of the site.
‘Willow dived the Russian tanker with me,’ Ajay said.
Guy looks me up and down. ‘Oh yeah? Pretty risky salvage dive.
Big payout though, right?’
‘Not bad,’ I murmur.
That was a good job. I was in between contracts in Brighton at the time, whittling away the money I’d accrued from my last gig on a North Sea oil rig. I’d seen the tanker on the news and wondered if the commercial diving company Ajay worked for would be hired to salvage it. It looked like a risky dive, lots of wielding and moving of heavy equipment…lots of opportunity for that equipment to tumble on top of the crew. When Ajay called asking if I was free to work on it, I hadn’t hesitated. It wasn’t just the job, it was Ajay too. We’d clicked straight away when he was my diving instructor. He’s one of the good guys – and he never once tried it on with me after a few too many beers.
‘This job will be risky too,’ Guy says, eyes lighting up. ‘Why’s it been allowed to stay under for twenty years, anyway?’
‘The cruise company went bust so couldn’t pay to salvage it,’ one of the other divers shouts over. ‘The Greek authorities couldn’t afford it either.’
‘I heard a mystery benefactor stepped in to pay,’ Ajay says.
I look at him. ‘Really? You didn’t tell me that.’
‘Just found out this morning, Foivos told me,’ he says, gesturing to the old Greek guy captaining our ship.
My verdict on My Sister’s Secret:
I absolutely adored The Atlas of Us so I was very eager to read Tracy’s new novel, My Sister’s Secret.
The book opens on three sisters, Faith, Hope and Charity and is set in 1977. Faith has a dream of going to find submerged forests and her sisters are quick to agree to go with her. The story then moves onto Charity’s daughter, Willow and it is set in the present day. Her parents have died in an accident and she is desperate to find any answers that she can to explain what happened the night her parents died as well as carrying on her mother’s dream of finding the underwater forests.
What can I say about this book… it’s simply marvellous and completely unputdownable. From the first page, I was hooked. ‘One more chapter’ became a common thought and before I knew it, I was reading into the early hours. The Atlas of Us was incredible but I think I dare to admit that I loved this one even more.
There are a few characters introduced through the book but each one is developed well and I quickly became attached to them, especially Charity, Hope and Willow. Dan and Niall are complex characters and things are not quite as they seem with any of the characters. Nothing is completely black and white.
The plot is compelling and there were continuous twists and turns to the point where I couldn’t predict how it was going to end at all. There are a few surprises.
There is a mix of lovely and heartbreaking moments. This book is a bit of a rollercoaster. I was stuck as I wanted to get through it to find out what happened but I was really sad when it came to an end.
There’s love and mysteries to solve. One of the plot elements I found very interesting was the focus on family dynamics and what constitutes being a parent and how circumstance can throw people together. I also live near to where some of the story was based so that was lovely to be able to have a clear vision of the setting the characters were in.
This book is fantastic and a perfect holiday read. I finished it a couple of days ago and I am still thinking about it.
I throughly recommend it. I already have to a few people.
For more information on Tracy and her novels, click here.
Click here to view the e-book edition on Amazon UK.
Tracy is also on Twitter: https://twitter.com/tracybuchanan
The blog tour continues tomorrow over at Love of a Good Book.