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This Secret Thing Out of love Out of protection Out of fear Everyone has a reason to lieEveryone in Raleigh, North Carolina, is talking about Norah Ramsey, the single mother accused of being a suburban madam But Norah’s not the only one keeping secretsAfter her mother’s arrest, Norah’s teenage daughter, Violet, is devastated and alone She has no one to turn to until her grandmother Polly arrives Polly, long estranged from Norah, is running from her own troubles Down the street, Bess, once Norah’s best friend, desperately tries to hide secrets while Casey, Bess’s daughter, flees college after a traumatic event, only to find that home isn’t the safe haven she expected And Nico, the detective who has doggedly pursued Norah Ramsey in hopes that she will lead him to his missing brother, is drawn further into these women’s lives while facing his own domestic disturbanceScandal has brought each of them to a crossroads Now, as they delve into Norah’s secrets, they must come to terms with secrets of their own—ones that still have the power to hurt or to heal


About the Author: Marybeth Mayhew Whalen

www.shereads.org Marybeth and her husband Curt have been married for 26 years and are the parents of six children The family lives in North Carolina Marybeth spends most of her time in the grocery store but occasionally escapes long enough to scribble some words She is always at work on her next novel You can find her at



10 thoughts on “This Secret Thing

  1. says:

    Huge thanks to Netgalley and Marybeth Mayhew Whalen for my copy of This Secret Thing.

    The Secret Thing is about a group of women who make hard choices for their families. The book begins with Norah who is arrested for managing a prostitution ring. Her mother, Polly, comes to visit to take care of Norah’s daughter, Violet. Polly has her own set of problems dealing wi


  2. says:

    Huge thanks to Netgalley and Marybeth Mayhew Whalen for my copy of This Secret Thing.

    The Secret Thing is about a group of women who make hard choices for their families. The book begins with Norah who is arrested for managing a prostitution ring. Her mother, Polly, comes to visit to take care of Norah’s daughter, Violet. Polly has her own set of problems dealing with her go


  3. says:

    This Secret Thing is a powerful story of friendship and sisterhood, and I fell into Whalen’s vision of a tight-knit Raleigh community willingly and easily. I could see the houses with their shaded windows, feel the sense of people watching, wondering what their neighbors were really up to. Sometimes it’s a big risk to start out a novel with the biggest secret revealed right up front, yet it v


  4. says:

    Wow! That's all that I can say about this book! I just finished this book at 3:45 in the morning and am still trying to process everything that happened!

    It took me a little bit to remember who the characters were and how they fit in the story but once I did, I was hooked! This book will leave you turning the pages in to the wee hours of the morning like me and then think It about the ending fo


  5. says:

    Wow! That's all that I can say about this book! I just finished this book at 3:45 in the morning and am still trying to process everything that happened! It took me a little bit to remember who the characters were and how they fit in the story but once I did, I was hooked! This book will leave you turning the pages in to the wee hours of the morning like me and then think It about the ending for days! Thanks so mu


  6. says:

    One great benefit of being a book reviewer is being introduced to a variety of new voices. “This Secret Thing” was an unexpected surprise as I was unfamiliar with Marybeth Mayhew Whalen previously.

    The focus of the novel is about women who make the best choices they can for those that they love. The reader is first introduced to Norah. She is arrested because she is accused of managing a prostitution ring.


  7. says:

    I almost DNRed a dozen times. I speed-skimmed to the finish.

    There are excellent synopses by other reviewers, so I’ll just get to the review. This muddle of a book is set in a meh suburb of monied, mostly White Americans in Raleigh, NC. This book’s weaknesses are the multitude of characters and too many POVs. I prefer books that have characters that I can follow throughout the story. That’s not easy to do when POV


  8. says:

    It's way past my bedtime as I'm writing this but let me say that I LOVED this small town crime/family fiction novel.

    I was a huge fan of this author's other title, The Things We Wish Were True, so I was thrilled to pick up her new book. And it was amazing!

    This Secret Thing is filled to the brim with scandals, drama and mystery. It tells the story of Norah Ramsey, a mother living her life in a North Carolina town until


  9. says:

    Had Potential, But Too Much Going On

    This story looked like it had the family drama that I so often enjoy in novels—and with two different families. Unfortunately, however, so many characters had so much going on all at once that it was hard to follow at times, and I couldn’t always see how these characters and plotlines were related, let alone supported or provided contrast, to the main storyline; a good subplot or character should e


  10. says:

    Could've finished this in one day had things not been so busy this month!

    Review and author interview coming soon!!


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