Marin Machado’s life was perfect. She owns a chain of upscale hair salons which includes a clientele of high-end celebrities, her husband Derek is a self-made millionaire, they each donate to many charities and adore their four-year-old son Sebastian. But three days before Christmas the unthinkable happens: Sebastian is taken, and after much publicity and an FBI search that goes cold, Marin and Derek’s life is forever changed. A year later there is a distance between the couple and Marin struggles to go on day to day. Not giving up on finding her son Marin hires a P.I. to continue the search but instead of finding any news on Sebastian Marin learns that Derek is having an affair with a much younger woman. Suddenly Marin has a purpose again, she’s started to feel again. Because someone took her son, but she won’t let another woman take her husband.
I started Little Secrets disappointed. I just couldn’t get into Hillier’s writing style and I just did not care about Marin or her privilege or her clientele list (we get it, you do J. Lo’s hair) but as I continued the book surprised me. I’m still not a fan of Hillier’s writing style, it’s just very simple and I found a lot of the dialogue to be unrealistic, but I slowly became impressed with the story. For one thing Hillier is very good at getting into Marin’s dark headspace, she doesn’t shy away from the torture and guilt she goes through from losing her son but it isn’t overly done either. I also thought it was interesting how Hillier showed how Marin’s anxiety caused her to spiral and do some morally questionable and dangerous things, I thought Marin’s desperation and willingness to do anything to find her son very realistic and was surprised that Hillier didn’t shy away from some of the darker aspects of what Marin did. I also really liked that Hillier can write unlikable and unsympathetic characters but still get reader’s interested in the story, I despised Kenzie but I looked forward to her chapters because reading her perspective was so messed up and interesting.
While Little Secrets did have a few twists that really shocked me, they really aren’t that surprising in hindsight. I had a feeling about one of the characters from the start but not the pieces to put it together, and even when the pieces were there I didn’t see it until the reveal. Overall, I found this to be a fun, pulpy thriller. It isn’t fantastic but if you’re looking for a fun, easy thrills then this is the book for you.
Publication: April 21st 2020
Publisher: Minotaur Books
Pages: 352 pages (eBook)
Genre: Fiction, Suspense, Thriller, Mystery
My Rating: ⛤⛤⛤⛤
“Marin had the perfect life. Married to her college sweetheart, she owns a chain of upscale hair salons, and Derek runs his own company. They’re admired in their community and are a loving family—until their world falls apart the day their son Sebastian is taken.
A year later, Marin is a shadow of herself. The FBI search has gone cold. The publicity has faded. She and her husband rarely speak. She hires a P.I. to pick up where the police left off, but instead of finding Sebastian, she learns that Derek is having an affair with a younger woman. This discovery sparks Marin back to life. She’s lost her son; she’s not about to lose her husband, too. Kenzie is an enemy with a face, which means this is a problem Marin can fix.