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Emma's Secret (Emma Harte Saga #4)
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Emma's Secret (Emma Harte Saga #4)

3.9  ·  Rating Details ·  2,540 Ratings  ·  108 Reviews
Paula O'Neil has inherited her grandmother Emma Harte's dream for success-a magnificent business empire in London shared by Paula's daughters, Linnet and Tessa. Yet their future is far less secure than any woman imagines. For beneath the dazzling surface, flares a rivalry and discontent that leave them vulnerable to the dreams of others.

Into the fray arrives enigmatic Amer
Paperback, 560 pages
Published November 2nd 2004 by St. Martin's Paperbacks (first published July 7th 2003)
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Nov 25, 2012 Ines rated it it was ok
I found the book very uneven, sometimes interesting but most just boring. This book is part of a saga, which worried me at first whether I could understand the little details, since I haven't read the other books but the author explains everything. And I really mean EVERYTHING. She even repeats herself, as if the reader wouldn't remember what he/she read a couple of chapters before!
There are too many characters and each character has a story line which makes story hard to follow at times. The mi
Aug 19, 2010 Sidna rated it liked it
Years ago I read A Woman of Substance, Bradford's first book about Emma Harte. It was basically a romance novel, but I knew that when I started it. It told the story of an unusual woman who pulled herself up from nothing to found a wealthy department store chain in Great Britain.

The first book was interesting because of the changes in the characters' lives and their loves, etc. This book is about the lives of Emma's grandchildren, who are hard workers and decent people despite having lived in gr
Stuart Aken
Oct 29, 2010 Stuart Aken rated it it was ok
• EMMA’S SECRET by Barbara Taylor Bradford, Harper Collins
506 pps. 47 chaps, 3 parts. 172,000 words.
A family saga and part of a series based on A Woman of Substance. The author breaks almost every rule ever made for fiction and doesn’t always get away with it. Some of her dialogue is banal and stilted, there are long passages of tedious description of clothes and décor, viewpoint changes frequently and without notice and the complex relationships are not helped by the use of similar names for s
Jan 12, 2012 Joanne rated it it was amazing
A continuation of the Emma Harte A Woman of Substance series. Book #4

A little confusing at 1st to remember the characters since I read the first book about 8 years ago. There is a nice family tree in the front for reference.

Loved it - family and history. Story goes between 2001 and back to 1940's war time London to reveal the secret Emma kept.

Evan Hughes travels to England after her grandmother Glynnis tells on her deathbed to go see Emma Harte. Emma has been dead 30 years, but Evan is given a
Oct 05, 2009 Jennifer rated it it was ok
Shelves: chick-lit
Another $1 book from the clearance shelf. I guess this is part of a series. It stands alone which is good, but nothing really made me want to hunt down the other books.
May 29, 2017 Robin rated it it was ok
I ended up skipping around a lot in this book. I loved The Cavendon series so I wanted to read more of her work. But this book has convinced me that these books are not for me.
Oct 02, 2015 Linda rated it it was ok
Emma's Secret - Barbara Taylor Bradford (My own Book purhased).
What did I think? I had many thoughts, especially since BTB is or was a favorite author. This book is so fragmented that to make some sense of the plot, you had to read the first book and the following ones of the saga. I sense the author was trying to have it read as a stand alone but it didn't work. Emma Harte is one of the modern day heroines.

One of the joys and faults of the book is the Interlude. We return to Emma and Blackie a
Feb 18, 2017 Meghan rated it liked it
4th book in a series, pretty good, read with book club, book 13
Apr 04, 2015 Lexi rated it really liked it

I believe I Mooched this book, once I got into the series. I finished it last night. This is the fourth book in the Harte saga, and it was just as good as the rest of the series. This book begins to focus on the fourth generation of Hartes, Kallinskis, and O'Neills. Emma's great-granddaughter, Linnet, daughter of Paula, has begun to work at Harte's, and the beginning of the book focuses on her. It follows the great-grands as they attempt to continue Emma's legacy in the business world at the beg
Apr 25, 2016 Evelyn rated it liked it
I read A Woman of Substance years ago and recall enjoying it, so when I came across this book at a used book sale I grabbed it. I didn't realize this was the 4th book in the series. I would have been completely lost without the 3 clans family trees at the front of the book, glad it was there.
While I did enjoy this story, especially the fashion retrospective, I did find it very repetitive and inconsistent. For example, there are multiple references to how hard the members of the clans work, howev
Jan 05, 2016 Dee rated it really liked it
A long and involved plot in a continuation of previous novels Ms. Bradford has written. Would make a great movie in the form of a 1940 Loretta Young story. It seemed to drag a little in the beginning, but the second half of the book picked up speed and you were enticed all along to find out 'what happens next?' Linnet, Tessa & Paula: daughters and mother are caught up in a large extended family drama. Evan comes from the U.S. and the drama quickens. The three clans: the Harte, O'Neill and Ka ...more
I put historical, in part because it did have a flashback section, but this book confused me for the longest part too in reference to this supposed secret. Yes, there was one, but it wasn't completely revealed until towards the end. Before that, it was like, ok, suspense? What happened to it? Intregue? Where is it? Not the worst book I've read, but I still wouldn't read it again. I DO however want to find the accompanying books as it seems it's actually a series and I do want to find out what's ...more
Sep 08, 2010 Sababa rated it liked it
It was not a bad book, but I felt it dwelt on the past. I did not like reading about Emma during the wars. It was boring.
I liked reading Tessa's character. I enjoyed that she was not perfect. It made her more human. On the other hand, Linnet seems very fake. She seems to be an embodiment of perfection. And how come Paula looks like Emma and Linnet looks like Emma. Its weird and unbelievable. I don't like reading it. Although I liked Jullian. I wish to read more about him.
Over all not a bad book,
I love how Mrs Bradford writes. And I have been fascinated by the British culture, speech and way of life for a long time now. So reading this book was a charm for me!
It's made me want to look for the first book in the series. Although that will be quite the feat!

Reading about the legacy left behind by one woman, her siblings and her close friends is, inspiring to say the least. It would be my dream too, to have two other clans forever united to mine ;)
Michelle Bacon
Aug 31, 2011 Michelle Bacon rated it did not like it
Shelves: romance
The only deduction I can come up with on this particular book is that maybe it's part of a series because things did not fall into place and left me asking many questions as to who people were and where they fit in this story. I'm not a fan of contemporary romances in the first place which may have also left a bad taste in my mouth about this book. I have no desire to read anymore from this author due to this book alone. That alone says it all for me. I was not entertained in the least.
Dec 20, 2007 Rachel rated it it was ok
After 100 pages I almost stopped reading this book. There were a couple sexual references that I didn't like and a woman with an abusive husband that had a little more detail than made me comfortable. Once it flashes back to the 1940's the book was much better. The story overall was okay. Super cheesy: the good guys are so good and pure, the bad guys purely devilish. And it was very predictable.
Earlier in the series, this is on the way to, but not quite yet suffering the same issues as "Just Rewards" by the same author (constant name checking and relationship-declaring to allow a reader to stand the chance of remembering who is who).[return][return]the premise is the finding of Emma Harte's diaries, and the appearance of Evan (who looks suspiciously like Emma) and attempting to find out where she sits in all things. How or why this takes 650+ pages, I'm not entirely sure....
Aug 23, 2011 Connie rated it really liked it
This was the 4th in the Harte series and took you back to Emma's years during World War II. It was about her son Robin who got her young secretary pregnant and how the secretary married someone else from the U S and he became the father of her son. The granddaughter comes back because her grandmother on her deathbed told her to see Emma for the key to her future. It was a little long and not as enjoyable as the others or maybe I just read them to close together.
Apr 02, 2016 Ranooshe rated it liked it
Shelves: fiction
A lifting, out looking story. Characters are positive and problems are at a minimum. However, the emphasis on Emma, and showing her in a goddess like status, whose legacy is zealously protected by 4th generations Hart's is a bit too much.
I remember the seeing the series adopted from the first Emma Hart book (A woman of Substance) a very long time ago. The new book brought memories of the series back to me.
Astrid Johanne
Det tog noget tid at komme igennem Emmas hemmeligheder, og jeg syntes den ender lidt bradt, og det er små forvirende med alle de forskellige personer, men når det er sagt så er det en rigtig god bog.
Jeg har ikke kunne mærke at det er bog nummer 3 og er en del af en serie, hvilket står på de bagerste sider, i takketalen fra forfatteren. Da jeg først kom ind i bogen, så er den rigtig god, jeg kan rigtig godt lide, at den skifter mellem nutid og fortid.
Phyllis Wright
Dec 15, 2013 Phyllis Wright rated it it was amazing
I just finished this book, in the Large Print version (764 pages) and loved it! Someday, I hope to go to England and Ireland, Wales and Scotland. In the meantime, I'll make do with these wonderful books by Ms. Bradford. Thank you, Ms. Bradford, for making England and Wales come alive for me in the best way, besides being there physically, and introducing me to the Harte Clan.
Dec 30, 2008 Dolly rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall I liked the book, but some parts went on and on with too much detail (Winston Churchill part mainly). I know he did great things during WW2, but it went on a bit long for my taste in that part.

I still think this author's writing style is like Danielle Steele and reads in a very similar way, but honestly I like Danielle Steele's work better.
Jun 01, 2016 Maryzj rated it really liked it
Shelves: chicklit, uk
I know the writing is stilted, but I still love the wealth, glamour and the happy endings. We've got so many generations since Emma Harte now that it's a bit confusing, but luckily everyone's parentage is explained at regular intervals. Especially in one dreary "christmas special" that goes on for pages.
A reasonable portion is a flashback to Emma herself.
♥Miyuki♥ Goco
Jun 09, 2011 ♥Miyuki♥ Goco rated it really liked it
It's a good book.Definitely a woman substance.Very descriptive throughout the whole story,from face sculpture,hair & eye colors,dress,skin complexion and texture,fashion and even furnitures.So,it basically wind up my imagination.But should get an X-rating for the sexual scenes.But overall it's still good.Main reason I can't sleep lately.
Anne Marie
Oct 19, 2012 Anne Marie rated it really liked it
This was a great book, but I still can't understand why Evan had to get together with her cousin! I was hoping her grandmother would have had Bryan ONeill's child, then at least she wouldn't have been a Harte! Other than that, I think the WW2 years could have been more exciting. I wish these last three books were made into a movie. Still want to get the movie for the first three books.
Ada Iaboni
Jun 09, 2013 Ada Iaboni rated it liked it
I always love Barbara's books and liked this one very much.
However, comparing it to some of the others, this was a bit flat and predictable.
It did explain some back story of the other books that were part of the Harte dynasty, especially since I did not read them in sequence.
All in all, it is still worth reading.
Feb 20, 2015 Andrew rated it it was amazing
I thought this was a really good read. There are a lot of characters in the book and it takes a little getting used to in terms of the different family gatherings. An excellent read and I have now started the next book in the serious. Barbara Taylor Bradford writes really well and she's definitely been added to my list of favourite authors!
Sep 06, 2011 Sadey rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Enjoyed it but quite repetitive in parts and felt it was annoying to constantly refer to the perfection of Emma. Every single character seems to constantly reflect on what an amazing woman she was. The end tended to fizzle out a bit too.
Jan 14, 2012 Diane rated it it was ok
Reads like a soap opera. The things the characters say to one another can be very corny, overly predictable. I hate to put a book down once I start reading it. That's the only reason I read until the end.
Jun 03, 2011 Jeanette rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I have gone to the library to get them to order A Woman of Substance, which is her first novel. She keeps the same characters; so I need to read this again to remember the beginning. These are good, a bit too descriptive, but I still enjoy reading her books.
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Barbara Taylor Bradford is the author of 30 bestselling novels, including The Cavendon Women, Cavendon Hall, and The Ravenscar Dynasty. She was born in Leeds, England, and from an early age, she was a voracious reader: at age 12, she had already read all of Dickens and the Brontë sisters. By the age of twenty, she was an editor and columnist on Fleet Street. She published her first novel, A Woman ...more
More about Barbara Taylor Bradford...

Other Books in the Series

Emma Harte Saga (7 books)
  • A Woman of Substance (Emma Harte Saga #1)
  • Hold the Dream (Emma Harte Saga #2)
  • To Be the Best  (Emma Harte Saga #3)
  • Unexpected Blessings (Emma Harte Saga #5)
  • Just Rewards (Emma Harte Saga #6)
  • Breaking the Rules (Emma Harte Saga #7)

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