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Thursday, November 15, 2012

Book Review: Secrets of the Red Box by Vickie Hall

There are secrets, tension and emotional intensity from beginning to end in this story. 
by Vickie Hall
  • File Size: 480 KB
  • Print Length: 318 pages
  • Publisher: Vickie Hall; 1 edition (September 15, 2012)
  • Sold by: Amazon Digital Services, Inc.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B009BURX3M
Genre: Suspense
My Rating: 4.5 of 5.0

Book Description
Publication Date: September 15, 2012
Bonnie has secrets to keep - secrets with the potential to destroy lives, including her own. Running from her destructive and pain filled past, she recreates herself, believing she has escaped the damning evidence hidden in the red box. When her former life is revealed by a cruel twist of fate, Bonnie faces losing everything, including Glen, the only man she’s ever loved. But is Bonnie the woman he thinks she is? Set against the backdrop of the 1940s, Secrets of the Red Box is filled with intrigue and suspense - sure to keep you guessing to the very end!

In 1945 Bonnie escapes from San Diego on the first bus she can get to. She lands in Omaha to start a new life. She is running from some terrible deeds but that is kept as secrets in her red leather box.  As she starts in a new job Bonnie makes friends and begins dating but she isn’t honest with them and isn’t really sincere in her relationships. Clearly she is a liar and a user of others. There are flash backs to her painfully abusive childhood that begin to give depth to Bonnie’s character making the reader wonder the influences that have contributed to her personality along with wondering what did Bonnie do that she is running from?

On the other side of the world in Italy, Corporal Glen Taggart is struggling to keep his young friend, Charlie Larkin, alive to get home to his wife, Amy. The 25 year old Glen has taken on the  responsibility to care for 20 year old Charlie because Glen seems to need to redeem himself from the death of his mother when he was a boy. Glen is a good man with a warm heart who tries to help stray dogs as well as young soldiers. I felt sorrow for the pain and tragedy he may face.

When the war ends, Glen returns to Omaha and meets Bonnie through his Aunt Irene. Bonnie has been working along side Irene and rooming in their basement. Although Bonnie has always sought to remain apart and not get involved with others she has slowly begun to feel that Irene and Don are a family she wished she could have grown up with. After a slightly antagonistic start, it isn’t long before Glen and Bonnie acknowledge they have fallen in love.

Bonnie takes the risk of marrying Glen and to her surprise and great joy they have children. All seems to be happiness until the day Glen uncovers the secrets in the red box. Bonnie’s greatest fears are realized as she has to face the consequences of her past.

The author manages to pull the reader’s interest in right from the beginning wondering what  crime or dreadful secret Bonnie is running from. There is emotional depth skillfully developed along with the tension of suspense. Bonnie isn’t immediately likeable but Ms. Hall manages to build a sympathetic view for her. I found myself feeling trepidation each time she pulled out the red box and pain at the betrayals that must follow the disclosure as I began to suspect what the secrets would reveal. Although there was some minor editing roughness the story is well written and strongly emotional. The ending is not a fairy tell HEA but rather a realistic possibility of a future. This is a different read but I do recommend it.

Bonnie’s longing for family and love:
She envied the woman for parents who loved her, for a home with walls papered in sanity.  Location 380
Irene tries to convince Bonnie she can have a better future in spite of her painful past.
“But life is what you make of it, Bonnie, and there’s no reason in the world why you can’t have a lived in home of your own someday.”
   How Bonnie wished that were true. But she’d sealed her fate back in San Diego, hadn’t she?  Location 3579.
I recieved this title for an honest review through participation in BookBlast tours.
This is set in Omaha, Nebraska for the Where Are You Reading Challenge. I will Also add it to my New Author and Suspense Challenge Lists.

Visit my BookBlast Post for chance to enter the Author's Giveaway for $50.00.

Author Vickie Hall
Vickie is a native of Utah, but growing up, lived in the states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Nebraska. When she's not writing, she's composing music, or shopping with her sister. She loves animals of all kinds and camping with her family. Her favorite pastime is watching old movies on TCM, and unashamedly has a crush on Cary Grant.

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