Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Book Review: The Deepest Secret by Carla Buckley

From Goodreads:
Diagnosed with XP, a rare medical condition which makes him lethally sensitive to light, Tyler is a thirteen-year-old who desperately wants just one thing: to be normal. His mother Eve also wants just one thing: to protect her son. As Tyler begins roaming their cul-de-sac at night, cloaked in the safety of the darkness, he peers into the lives of the other families on the street-looking in on the things they most want hidden. Then, the young daughter of a neighbor suddenly vanishes, and Tyler may be the only one who can make sense of her disappearance…but what will happen when everyone's secrets are exposed to the light?
I think it's important to clarify what category this book falls into before I really review the writing.  Knowing what a book is and what the author is trying to accomplish makes a difference to me when I'm reviewing.  I think saying "It's good for what it is" sounds super condescending, but in some cases I'm hard pressed to think of another way to say it.  This isn't literary fiction.  It's also not a suspense/thriller.  It's a Jodi Picoult-type extreme situation posing a moral dilemma book.  Go ahead and coin that as a genre.

The thing is, while I feel like with this kind of book you absolutely must reference Picoult, I think Buckley may have her beat.  While I think the plot may have veered a bit towards the formulaic (just read my newly invented genre name for a plot summary), the characters were well developed.  There were subplots that held my interest and made the characters feel more like real people, despite the crazy circumstances they were in.

Entertainment Value
I love moral dilemma books, and this one was exceptionally entertaining because it kept me guessing.  Despite the fact that the plot followed something of a generic formula, I didn't "figure out" the ending.  It kept me guessing and didn't fall prey to the "what's the craziest thing that could happen" issue that I think both Picoult and Lifetime movies suffer from.  Oooooh, speaking of, this would make an amazing Lifetime Original Movie and I'd totally DVR it.  Let's try to make that happen.

I ate it up.  I even texted my reading clone Jacki and told her to put it on her list halfway through.  There's not a better recommendation than that.  It kept me interested and intrigued me and I found myself carrying it around with me so I could read it at odd moments.

Thanks to TLC for providing me with a copy to review.  Click here to see the other stops on the tour.


  1. Wow, sounds like a great read! I'm so glad you enjoyed it.

    Thanks for being on the tour. I'm featuring your review on TLC's Facebook page today.

  2. I refer to this genre as Lady Fiction with Literary Aspirations.

    Speaking of Lifetime movies, we need to have another Lifetime movie night!