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Seven for a Secret

3.74  ·  Rating Details ·  1,483 Ratings  ·  50 Reviews
Tragedy brought young Frederica to the idyllic hamlet of Harper's Green. But as she grew from child to woman, she became powerless against her love for the enigmatic Crispin Tamarisk, and drawn more closely to his family's secrets and curses that seemed directed to her....
A Main Selection of the Literary Guild and the Doubleday Book Club
Paperback, 352 pages
Published 1993 by Fontana Books (first published January 1st 1992)
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(showing 1-30)
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Maria Elmvang
I'll be the first to admit that Victoria Holt doesn't write great literature. Her stories are fluff - meant for entertainment and not much else. But so what? Once in awhile a bit of entertainment is all I really ask for in a book, and as such Seven for a Secret did a great job. The writing was tighter than I've seen in some of her other books and while somewhat contrived the plot wasn't altogether improbable and the ending very satisfactory.

It's not a book that'll leave a lasting impression on a
Jul 11, 2008 Laurie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
She is such a good writer. I love how she writes from childhood and unravels all these cryptic mysteries. My husband was excited that I was reading a romance. But this disappointed him for it was really really clean and more a story of discovery. I loved it and I love her books
Shalini M
Now, this did not turn out to be as interesting as I expected. I don't know whether it is one of her worse works, or whether her books may not so intriguing to a mature adult as they could be to a school/college student. I read a few of her books way back then, and loved them. I was never much into romances, but found her kind of romantic thrillers quite enjoyable. I didn't find another of her books since then, and was therefore thrilled to find one at Blossoms a couple of weeks back. And I was ...more
Another author I keep hearing about from my friends. I don't know if all her books are this rubbishy or if I just picked a bad one, but it read like the magnum opus of a fifteen-year-old who reads too many sordid newspaper articles. How else can you cram seduction, suicide, identity crises, divorce, deception, illegitimate children, and South Sea islands into just one story?

Also, the NAMES. Tamarisk is bad... but Crispin?!?

I rest my case.
Mar 26, 2016 Jamie rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who likes gothic romance
One of my all-time favorite books, I first read Seven for a Secret when I was in high school. For a few years I looked in local book shops for a copy of my own, but didn't find one until recently. It was still as good as I remembered it being seven or eight years ago.
Seven for a Secret is the second to last book written by Victoria Holt. Victoria Holt is one of eight pen names used by author Eleanor Burford. She wrote 32 books under the name Victoria Holt between the years of 1960 and 1993. VH books are mostly clean romantic suspense/gothic. Overall I liked Seven for a Secret, but it was slow at times and occasionally thoughts were repetitive, and it seemed a little anti-climatic.
Jan 15, 2017 Kim rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 21, 2016 Kelly rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
2.5- it was good.
Abigail Yow
Even if Holt's books are deemed to be formulaic and predictable, still, I can always expect a good, engaging and suspenseful read every time I pick up any one of her novels.

I have to admit that Holt's books aren't without fault. Her characters may not be consistently multifaceted, her plot usually follows a single pattern which you can ultimately guess what's going to happen in the end and of course the love story feels awkwardly contrived. But despite all the minor setbacks I have with most of
Anna Karras
Nov 15, 2008 Anna Karras rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I am a fan of Victoria Holt, one of my grandmother's favorite authors. This story is about Frederica (Freddie) who comes to live with her aunt after her mother dies. Aunt Sophie lives in a small village in England near the St. Aubyn estate. Freddie attends classes with Tamarisk St. Aubyn and another gilr, Rachel. From the beginning, Freddie is intrigued by Crispin St. Aubyn, Tamarisk's older brother and the owner of the estate, even though he barely seems to notice the 13 year-old girl. As time ...more
Jul 07, 2007 Chazzle rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women, and men who enjoy the plots of Desperate Housewives
I really, really enjoyed this book. I can't quite put this in the "Hall of Fame" with Sidney Sheldon and Dominick Dunne, but it's close.

Most intriguing element: A grown woman who has lost her sanity, to the extent that she believes that a doll is a living baby. I won't spoil the secret, but there's a darn good reason for her condition. Serious goosebumps when the author spills the beans on this one.

Even in chapters which seem to be "filler", the writing is real pleasant.

Difficulty: tougher than
Feb 27, 2011 Jodi rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: women
Victoria Holt was a guilty pleasure that I discovered through a friend of mine back in high school. These books have a historical fiction feeling to them but they are not based on any real event in history. They are enjoyable to read and I devour them quickly but they are simply mind candy! There is always a twist too! What a surprise to learn about Crispin as a baby and to learn how Tamarisk is surviving on a lonely distant island off off Australia. I also liked that this book was "clean!"
May 13, 2008 Ani rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: i-own
It's funny to remember that I stole this book from the school library (for the record, no one in that school reads in English nor would the appreciate a good novel, so I did the book a favor) even though I wasn't too sure I'd like the genre.

I was pleasantly surprised! It's not fast paced, but it keeps you interested with the mysteries and secrets of every character until you want to know all their secrets, and once you do, all you can do is smile.
I liked this when it started but it dragged on far too long especially since the major mystery is pretty damned obvious from the beginning. The romance is also rather anemic here which I also found to be rather true of The Mistress of Mellyn but at least in that one the story was a little more gripping.
Melinda Lamoreaux
I had this book recommended to me by my sister without knowing anything about it. I was pleasantly surprised. I thought the story line was interesting and not too predictable. The characters were likable and I found myself pleased with their character growth throughout the book. It had just enough twists to keep me turning the pages and I thought it tied up very nicely. I would recommend this book and read another by this author.
Nov 14, 2008 Jenn rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
The worst book of all time! Characters are so flat, that during one short back-and forth conversation in the book I had to go to the beginning and count every other line to figure out who was saying what! The dialog could have been spoken by anyone of the characters, that's how little depth and substance they were given.

The plot of the book was simple-minded and utterly predictable.

Whoever authorized that this book be published should be very, very ashamed.
Feb 04, 2016 Rina rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Ordered a book with this name and got this one by Victoria Holt; should have been one by Lyndsay Faye! So, this was a run of the mill romance but there were several aspects I found interesting. A "turned" (mad) woman with a secret; a bad guy; a murder; a trip to a far away country; the world of the "landed gentry" vs. the servant types, all in an idyllic English town. There were a couple of twists which makes me bring my two stars to 2.5. That's all, folks.
Apr 25, 2012 Keshia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty good book. Unexpected turns and twists... follows the life of a 13 year old girl up through 20 years old. Not sure I liked the ending... because it left open the possibility of the main characters someday being kicked out of their mansion... or something like unto it... though it tries to make you feel like it's not very likely.
Victoria Holt – stand alone
Tragedy brought young Frederica to Harper’s Green, but as she grew from child to woman, her peaceful surroundings crumbled under the weight of seduction, scandal, suicide and murder.

I’d not read Victoria Holt for many years. This is a classic gothic romantic suspense novel that provided a delightful afternoon’s escape.
Susan Fetterer
I loved reading VH's romantic, suspenseful novels many years ago and was delighted to come upon this one, which I had not read. The story line was, like most of the others was simplistic but fun, quick, and escapist reading. The plot broke down at one point and became predictable but it was nevertheless a fun, bedtime read.
Sep 09, 2016 Jenny rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I think I've read this before…I had the story figured out in the first few pages.

And her falling in love with him? There was no character basis for her choice. And no one talks like that - or maybe they did, but I would have hit the girl in the mouth for being a pompous, stuck-up self-righteous pill.
May 14, 2015 Jess rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
It was a decent enough of a book. You could see the ending pretty early on though as there was heavy foreshadowing. It was nice that the raunchy things were left out and only alluded to them. Easy read when you don't feel like doing anything else.
Linda Brungardt
Frederika moves in with her aunt when her mother has a stroke. She joins two other girls for tutoring and then boarding school. She eventually marries the master of the estate and meets her father who is blind and lives on a remote island near Australia.
Apr 03, 2016 Neja rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: my-childhood
Books written by Victoria Holt are so cheesy, but sometimes that's exactly what you need. I've read a loooot of her books when I was 14/15 years old..that was the last time I've read them. I absolutely loved them at the time. I'm thinking of reading one of her books just for the old times sake! =)
started out well characters were likeable too. I figured out the big secret pretty early on but that didn't bother me. some of the dialogue was a bit much but I guess that cones with an older nook. Holt is hit or miss for me but overall this was a hit
May 23, 2016 Probe rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I read this when I was around 14 I think. It was my first book from Victoria Holt. And I was absolutely stunned by it. To date it is still one of the most compelling and suspenseful stories I've ever read.
Jan 23, 2015 Jen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: romance
Exactly what I expected after reading the reviews. A simple read with little thought needed to figure out what happens in the end. Still enjoyable enough.
Apr 16, 2012 Vmontgzz rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Me encantan las novelas de Victoria Holt y esta de una de las buenas, mucho suspenso, mas de un secreto que guardar, un viaje a una isla exotica y al final todo sale bien. Me gusto mucho.
May 29, 2012 Aliha rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Also given to me by the same friend who gave me Mistress of Meylln and again i`m thankful to her to share a great book with me once again ...more
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Librarian Note: There is more than one author in the GoodReads database with this name. See this thread for more information.

Eleanor Alice Burford, Mrs. George Percival Hibbert was a British author of about 200 historical novels, most of them under the pen name Jean Plaidy which had sold 14 million copies by the time of her death. She chose to use various names because of the differences in subjec
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