REVIEW: I have several SECRETS to reveal to you. Well…a few anyway! Secret number one: The Secrets We Hide by Patricia Sands is the first ever book that I have read of hers. Secret number two: It is not however the only book of hers in my kindle library. There are a total of FIVE! It’s not that I haven’t wanted to read her books, it was finding the time. When you’re a reviewer, you read by deadline and author request. My final secret I’m revealing today is that I am a sold, diehard fan of Patricia Sands. I absolutely and madly fell in love with The Secrets We Hide.
It took me a few short reading spells to get into the book. It was interesting from the get go but, I had a few things on my mind and a few projects taking up my time. Two days ago my husband announced he was going fishing. Yay! I’m spending the day reading. Well, I picked up my book and became spellbound with the story that Patricia wove for her readers. I couldn’t put it down. I read every chance I got for the next two days and finished the last half hour this morning.
The characters were people that I could look up to and admire. The main character was Kaito. He is a fellow that was born in Japan and when he was in high school his parents moved the family to Honolulu, Hawaii. His best friend’s family also moved there at the same time. Her name was Hana and after graduation they married. I don’t want to tell you a lot about the story because I want you to discover it for yourself. This book is like a beautiful flower that opens one petal at a time and reveals something new and beautiful to the story.
I will tell you that Kaito turned to Buddhism to guide his life. I learned a lot about their beliefs in this book. The book does not bore you with drab descriptions of the religion. The author makes it interesting and brings it alive. She does the same thing with the settings in the book. There are several locations that we learn about during the story. The main ones are Hawaii, France and Tokyo.
This story is so complex with love, family, loyalty, forgiveness and humanity. The plot is complex like anybody’s life. I didn’t want it to end. The Secrets We Hide was not just a great read, it was an experience. Well done Patricia Sands! I’ll be talking about this book for a long time.
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SYNOPSIS: The deep traditions and values of Kaito Tanaka’s Japanese heritage are severely tested when he returns home to Honolulu from duty in Vietnam to find his wife, Hana, in the grip of progressive mental health challenges.
As Hana’s condition worsens, Kaito’s life becomes absorbed in protecting and caring for her and their daughter, Kiana. Hana becomes increasingly reclusive while their daughter Kiana grows troubled and rebellious. A friend’s mysterious death followed by Kiana’s sudden disappearance cut deeply into Kaito’s soul. Meditation is Kaito’s drug of choice. Secrecy hides the truth from others but Kaito’s commitment to Hana is unwavering.
As years go by, Kaito begins to make an annual pilgrimage to a Buddhist retreat in Koyasan that renews his spirit. In the end, a serendipitous coincidence there opens the door to happiness – if he can allow himself to accept it.
“Set against lush backdrops in Hawaii, Japan, Corsica, and the south of France, this beautiful story of resilience perfectly balances the heartbreak and destruction of mental illness with the compassion and serenity of an unforgettable hero.” Barbara Claypole White, bestselling author of The Perfect Son and The Promise Between Us.