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The Art of Keeping Secrets

3.65  ·  Rating Details ·  1,482 Ratings  ·  154 Reviews
Annabelle has finally made peace with the loss of her beloved husband. Until she finds out he wasn't alone when he died?
Since a plane crash killed her husband two years ago, Annabelle Murphy has found solace in raising her two children. Just when she thinks the grief is behind her, she receives the news that the wreckage of the small plane has been discovered?and that he
ebook, 246 pages
Published June 3rd 2008 by New American Library (first published 2008)
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Dec 10, 2012 Lori rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2012
This was my third book by Henry and my least favorite of the three. I'm not too worried about that, as it's one of her earlier novels and my absolute favorite work by her is one of her latest. I went through this when my Kristin Hannah obsession first started; I began with her latest novel, fell head over heels in love then was not as impressed with her earlier works. The title of this book drew me in first, followed by the cover artwork. Then the storyline got me: Annabelle Murphy's husband is ...more
(There is a moderate spoiler after the 3rd paragraph. Not enough to hide the whole review, but enough, that if you are serious about reading the book, you might not want to know ahead of time, though I will try and be vague as possible.)

I feel really bad that I just don't like this author's premises that much, but obviously it doesn't keep me from trying again when a book of hers comes my way. She loves the low country. I love the low country. We have that meeting ground. But honestly, I think w
Aug 11, 2013 Katie rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

This was a new author for me, but most definitely someone I will continue to read. Firstly, this is an excellent beach read. Set in Marsh Cove, South Carolina, I could completely envision myself in the dunes, on the beach, sitting on Annabelle's front porch, walking down a dock and hearing the waves hit the hulls of the boats. I could see the quaint town of Newboro, complete with the requisite old Southern homes. As for the characters, I really liked Annabelle. I sympathized with he
I really liked The Art of Keeping Secrets by Patti Callahan Henry. It was not just the storyline I liked but I have really come to enjoy the author's style of writing. It just flows so well and it gives me the sensation of just floating along the waters of the southeastern coastline. There is some turbulence along the way, but the ride just makes me feel good.

This story is interesting because two of the main characters are dead, not in a ghost story sort of way, but they are major players in the
Wow to find out all you knew about your husband was only part of who he was. Such big secrets to keep AND secrets really destroy lives.

I felt for Annabelle but was glad she was not whiny. She wante the truth but when she couldn't get it she moved on knowing it was more important to live for her and her children.

Jake was so wise and Keeley was a typical teenager. Sophie, was ANNOYING. I understand your mom raised you to live in fear, but at some point you need to grow up and realize the world d
Oct 03, 2008 Nancy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: fiction
I have two categories for books I don't like: books I don't like but can finish, and books I don't like and can't finish. This fell into the former category. I didn't object to the fact that this was a light fluff read. But, I was really irritated by Sophie who is one of the main characters. She's a dolphin researcher who is researching why dolphins get caught in the nets of commercial fishermen so that regulations can be imposed to prevent it. She does her research from the boat of a local comm ...more
Jan 18, 2009 Kathleen rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: the-carolinas
This book just continued to draw me in - the characters, the plot's twists and turns, the author's use of language. Two years after her husband dies flying a small plane, the main character is trying very hard to juggle all her responsibilities as mother, friend, professional while still grieving for the loss of her husband. His plane is found along with the body of a female passenger. Despite their long history together, his reputation as father, friend and husband, his unquestionable professio ...more
This story moved quite slowly for me. The synopsis seemed to imply that there was some great secrets between Annabelle Murphy's family and her husband Knox, who was killed 2 years earlier in a plane crash and the mysterious artist, Liddy Parker. I kept reading the story and feeling a build up of something happening and secrets revealed but I have to say that what was ultimately revealed was a true let down. The story was a introspective look at families, fidelity, and the secrets we all harbor i ...more
Nov 06, 2015 Sally rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Annabelle's husband 's plane went down on a hunting trip to Colorado. Three years later some lost hikers find the plane but Knox was not alone, there was a woman in the plane also. Who was she? Why was she in Knox's plane? why did not Annabelle know he was taking someone with him? Did he have a secret life? Was he unfaithful? Was their wonderful life together a lie? Through a great deal of trouble the answers are found. Does everyone have secrets?
Pati Judy
May 12, 2010 Pati Judy rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Oh my goodness, I have never read a book with more self pity! I kept reading with hope she would realize the gifts she still held in her life, instead she bored me to the very last page!
Michelle Dicristo
Aug 19, 2009 Michelle Dicristo rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Not one of my favorite books. Read like a soap opera.
K.E. Garvey
Annabelle is living on autopilot since her husband died in a plane crash. She has her friends, her kids, and her job and is quite content to live a predictable life filled with memories. Sofie is trying to find her way through life. She has a job she loves, a man who loves her (even if it isn’t exactly healthy love), and a lifetime of secrets. The one thing these women have in common is that they are both weak characters. Annabelle can’t stand up for herself or to anyone, including her obnoxious ...more
Oct 02, 2016 Karen rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
My first book by the author...not sure if I will read another. The whole dolphin storyline was unusual and did not seem to fit with the rest of the story... the twist at the end regarding Sophia's Father was ludicrous
Patty Warren
Patti Callahan Henry gives us a story of a family trying to recover from losing their father and husband to a plane accident two years in the past. When the wreckage of plane is found, it tears open the wounds they bore from this tragedy again. As the story opens, Annabelle finds out that her husband, Knox, did not die alone.
The effect this news has on all the characters create interesting interactions. I love southern lit and Patti Callahan Henry does it well. "The Art of Keeping Secrets" come
I would have put this as a 3,5, it wasn't my favourite of hers, but it's better than my opinion of a 3.
Great story line. When Annabelle's husbands plane is found after two years of being missing, he isn't alone. The body of another woman is with him. Who is she? No one seems to know. Not his family, not his closest friends.
I found this one a little slow. There was so much build up to the climax than when I got there to find out about the secrets and lies, I was disappointed that that was all t
Aug 24, 2014 Kat rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 27, 2012 Radhika rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Annabelle Murphy has lived through her grief for the past two years by seeking solace in bringing up her kids , after her husband dies in a plane crash in Colarado. The plane wreck was never found When she thinks nothing more can hurt her and she is over the worst, comes another shocking news that the plane wreck was found and there was not one but two bodies. Her husband Scott and there was another woman with him. This rocks Annabelle's world fearing that she has lived a lie of a life all along ...more
Writers. Artists. Love and loss. Tragedy. The Carolinas. Mythology. Dolphins.

"The Art of Keeping Secrets" by Patti Callahan Henry has it all, pitting Annabelle Murphy's need for the truth about her late husband Knox against Sofie Milstead's need for secrecy about her past. I found this story toying with my expectations as the story unfolded. I'd spend a hundred pages wondering before a question was addressed casually and naturally, only to set up a newer, more pressing question. Ms. Henry layere
Mar 19, 2009 Vivian rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Patti Callahan Henry's writing just gets better and better. This one is a definite page turner that hooked me from the first page with its beautiful descriptions of the Lowcountry. Ms. Henry is a talented Southern writer in the tradition of Mary Alice Monroe, Dorothea Benton Frank and Anne Rivers Siddons.

Two years after Annabelle's husband dies in a plane crash, his body and that of a woman are found in the wreckage. With the help of her family and friends, Annabelle explores the reality of her
Michelle (meshe)
This book started out with a bang and ended with a little whimper. I really enjoyed the first 2/3 but was disappointed with the lat 1/3. A plane crash killed Annabelle Murphy's husband and 2 years later, the wreckage is found. His body is there along with the body of a female. Of course, this makes Annabelle and her children wonder if their entire life with husband and father was a big ole lie.
I wish the relationships with Annabelle's circle of friends had been a bigger part of the book. I felt
Jan 24, 2012 Erika rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Overall it was just okay. Some parts were a little unbelievable, for instance, the main character had known her husband since elementary school and their group of frineds were their same friends from high school. The novel is mainly about Sophie's, Liddy's, and Knox's secrets, but Sean also reveals a very big secret of his to Anabelle. Anabelle's daughter, Keeley, is exasperating because she is so rude. The beginning is slow but once you start to learn more about Sophie the novel gets more inter ...more
Oct 13, 2011 Jessi rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
I really, really, really liked this book until about half way through. I read the first half in about 4 days, and since then have been forcing myself to finish the story. I wanted to know what happened, but the author really started to drag the story out. The book easily could have lost 50 pages. I also did not like Belle, the main character. I found her to be whiny, annoying, and sometimes I really just wanted to hit her. I had such Hugh expectations for yhis book after the first few chapters t ...more
Molly O'Neill
Jul 01, 2009 Molly O'Neill rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: No one
To be honest, I didn't completely read this book. I got it for free when I went to VA beach last year and it has just been sitting on my shelf. So I finally grabbed it to read on the metro. The first 100 pages were super easy to read. Nothing to process, just a mental break, which is nice. However, again, I just couldn't relate to the characters. I felt like the author was trying to be Mary Higgins Clark in her descriptions and trying to add suspense to the story, but it just didn't do it for me ...more
Aug 03, 2009 Amy rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Rather lame. When Annabelle Murphy finds out her dead husband was in a plane wreck with another woman, Liddy, she understandably starts to questions her relationship with her husband. The rollercoaster though of up and down emotions is a bit annoying. From jumping to conclusions to just accepting after all the questions/frustrations seemed a bit too easy. When she finally finds out the majority of what happened, she seems to accept it and then finds love with her best friend, Shawn. The fact tha ...more
Jul 24, 2011 Nancy rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Really enjoyed this book about Trust, and knowing the people in your life to the core. Hidden secrets and how they affect those around us. The story of a woman who loved her life and thought she lost it. The story of another who hid hers by fear. The story of finding.
All of this in a story about a woman whose husband died in a plane crash and they find there was a woman with him which alters everything she thought she knew about him but in the end really did know. Also about loving persons who c
Sep 10, 2013 Nicole rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
This protagonist is a widow who finds out her husband died in a plane crash with an unknown female passenger when he was supposed to be alone. The widow's journey to solve the woman's identity is the heart of this story.

The basic premise of trust is explored and all of the questions and possibilities come to life as the story unfolds. The characters were interesting, but some of the friendships seemed a little contrived. Overall, I think this was a good quick read, something to pack in the bag t
Aug 18, 2008 Marcelle rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Another beach book - I'm on Coronado and the bookstore here just didn't have a huge selection. Two years after husband's plane crashes, the plane is discovered AND there is a woman discovered on board with him. The author explores faith, trust and belief when everything a woman believed about her marriage is challenged. It also makes you think about why we keep secrets and the effect they may have on you and others. Not the best book but interesting premise and could promote interesting discussi ...more
Chrissy Palko
Jul 30, 2008 Chrissy Palko rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
It is what it is.....quick & easy read. The perfect book for a lazy summer day in the backyard hammock, long car drive in the passenger's seat or laying in the sand while listening to the water crash. I was able to wrap myself into the characters as the plot unraveled. I guess it's a guilty pleasure because I enjoyed reading every word until the very end. Not award winning or earth shattering.
A new author for me and a wonderful story of loss, questioning if your life is really what you think and finding your way back. I thought this was well written and the characters were pretty well developed and real.

A few places where it dragged a bit for me...and I was able to "see" what was coming, but some surprises as well. All in all a very enjoyable read and an author I will return to.

3.5 stars
Annabelle Murphy is a widow. Her husband knoxdird in a plane accident. For two years Annabelle has mourned his loss and tried to move on with her life.

Just when her life has reached some normalcy, her husband's plane is found in a remote area of Colorado. But the plane not only contains her husband, but unidentified woman. And annabelle's world is upturned.

The novel explores how we can't always know everything about those we love.
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Patti Callahan Henry is the New York Times Bestelling novelist of eleven novels. Her latest is THE IDEA OF LOVE with St. Martins Press.

Patti grew up as a Minister’s daughter, learning early how storytelling effects our lives. She grew up spending her summers on Cape Cod where she began her love affair with the beach, ocean, tides and nature of the coast. Moving south at the tender age of twelve,
More about Patti Callahan Henry...

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“The written word held a power she almost revered: to be able to write so as to influence the hearts and minds of other readers seemed nothing short of a miracle.” 1 likes
“...unearthing the truth was akin to creating it; something new and profound appeared where it hadn't been before.” 0 likes
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