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April 5, 2023

My Stepmother's Secret by Emma Robinson ~ a Review

by Susan Roberts

It’s in that moment, I realise – I have nowhere to turn. If my precious daughters and I are going to have a roof over our heads, we have to return to my childhood home. The one I’ve not felt welcome in since my father died. The one where the woman who destroyed our family still lives…

Amazon affiliate links are used on this site. A free book was provided for an honest review.

book cover of women's fiction novel My Stepmother's Secret by Emma Robinson
March 2023; Bookouture; 978-1837903290
ebook, print (274 pages); women's fiction

When Gabbie finds out that her husband has been keeping secrets that affect her and their two daughters, she packs up her car and heads to the only place she can go - the house she grew up in.  It's her house but is lived in by her stepmother Jill - the uncaring and boring woman her father married after her wonderful loving mother died in a car accident.  She doesn't want to go back there because she resents Jill and blames her for the changes in her life growing up, but she has no choice.  She's keeping the reason for their unexpected trip from her two daughters - one of them a teenager who is very suspicious and difficult.  By day two, Gabbie is even more resentful towards Jill and doesn't want her giving advice about her daughters.  When Gabbie finally tells Jill why she has come to her family home and asks for money, Jill refuses to give her any money but tells her that she and the two girls can stay there as long as they need to.

As Gabbie begins to face the issues of her husband's addiction to gambling and her daughters' happiness, Jill begins to share family secrets with her and Gabbie finds out that nothing in her life is what she thought it was -from her loving and fun mother, why her father sent her away to boarding school, the girl who bullied her in school and her husband's addiction - she has spent her entire life viewing people and situations wrong.  Now she has to decide how to deal with the changes in her life and how to best take care of her daughters and she realizes that she may need to start depending on people that she had never trusted in the past.

This well-written family saga was full of secrets and the effects that those secrets had on other people.  Gabbie has to decide whether to stay in her marriage and what she should tell her daughters about their father. It's also about choices and change.  Is it possible to see people and situations differently than you have all of your life?

My Stepmother's Secret is the first Emma Robinson book that I've read and I plan to read more of her books.  The author's bio states that she has a passion for stories that explore the power of family and friendship in the most challenging circumstances.  This book definitely fits that description and I'm anxious to try some of her earlier books.  If you enjoy books about a family with secrets that are unraveling and how people deal with the secrets, this is the book for you!

(Kindle Unlimited subscribers can read for FREE)

Susan Roberts grew up in Michigan but loves the laid-back life at her home in the Piedmont area of North Carolina where she is two hours from the beach to the east and the mountains in the west.  She reads almost anything but her favorite genres are Southern Fiction and Historical Fiction.  

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