Tuesday, February 6, 2024

All My Secrets By Lynn Austin

All My Secrets
by Lynn Austin
Publisher: Tyndale
ISBN: 978-1-4964-3745-7

I was thrilled to be on Lynn Austin's launch team for the first time with her new release All My Secrets. She sent me the book for review.


New York, 1898. The only thing more shocking than Arthur Stanhope III’s unexpected death is the revelation that his will bestows his company—and most of the vast fortune that goes with it—to the nearest male heir, leaving his mother, wife, and daughter nearly impoverished. His widow, Sylvia, quickly realizes she must set aside her grief to ensure their daughter, Adelaide, is launched into society as soon as the appropriate mourning period passes. If Sylvia can find a wealthy husband for Addy before anyone realizes they’re practically destitute, there will be little disruption to the lifestyle they’re accustomed to.

Sylvia’s mother-in-law, Junietta, believes their life could use a little disruption. She has watched Sylvia play her role as a society wife, as Junietta once did, despite what it cost them both. Junietta vows to give her granddaughter the power to choose a path beyond what society expects.

But for Addy to have that chance, both mother and grandmother must first confront painful truths about their own choices. Only in bringing their secrets to light can they hope to reshape their family inheritance into a legacy more fulfilling than they ever dared dream.

My Review:

WHAT a great story! If you want to fall in love with a trio of ladies, Junietta, Sylvia, and Addy are your gals.

All My Secrets certainly starts out sad as we get to know each of the ladies as they work their way through grief at the last of the Arthur Stanhope men on their side of the family. Women in the Gilded Age weren't afforded much as women, and was the impetus of them figuring out what is truly important.

I loved that we got to know Junietta's back story. I couldn't help but cheer her on! She wants a different life for her granddaughter, Addy, but Sylvia wants the lifestyle they're used to. Further into the story we get to learn more about Sylvia's early years and to understand what makes her tick. Neither women had easy lives and suffered a lot of hardships. Those early years also form the reasons for what they hope for Addy's future. I was so drawn into their stories, it was sometimes hard to come back to their "present" time. This story is a great reminder that the grass isn't always greener on the other side!

I'm so overjoyed to be able to say that the Gospel message is presented so wonderfully in this story. I was incredibly thankful that the author wove Truth into it in a way that didn't feel forced, but part of the characters lives. I rejoiced every time Mimi Junie or a circumstance brought faith up!

Towards the end (the very end) the story did slow a bit for me. Not a big deal, but it did. There's also a relationship that comes about that made me question how "related" are they? hahahaha I know "back in the day" and all, but still I wasn't sure how much of a fan I was after the revelation. I liked the characters, a lot, but it would've been great (for me) if there hadn't been the familial connection.

About the Author:

Lynn Austin has sold nearly two and a half million copies of her books worldwide. A former teacher who now writes and speaks full-time, she has won eight Christy Awards for her historical fiction and was one of the first inductees into the Christy Award Hall of Fame. One of her novels, Hidden Places, was made into a Hallmark Channel Original Movie. Lynn and her husband have three grown children and make their home in western Michigan. Visit her online at lynnaustin.org.


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Woven by Words by Mimi B is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-No Derivative Works 3.0 United States License.