Review for Keeping Secrets

Review for Keeping Secrets

Pageflex Persona [document: PRS0000032_00020]I am almost done with the Chestnut Hill series (horses + boarding school) so I was looking around for some new horse books to enjoy. I found 3 new series, and I am going to slowly try them all out.

So this was my first one to try out and I have to say I really enjoyed this one. Though I have one thing I need to get of my chest. Why? Why, do all these Horse books have a mean girl (or a mean girl and a posse) in it? I get the whole rival stuff, but this is just ridiculous. Various Dutch books about horses > mean girl. Canterwood Crest > Mean Girl. Chestnut Hill > Mean Girl. Do I need to go on? I just don’t get why it needs to be added. Sure it adds some fun drama to the mix, but it is also frustrating and I am annoyed at why no one (but the kids themselves) notice. How come the adults never do anything about it? There are hints and also enough clear stuff happening that anyone with a brain would notice, but oh no. 😐
In this book we also have a girl, and once again (just like all the other books), she is rich, wants to please her parents, and is a bitch in general to anyone and everyone. Bah. I get that she is probably pressured by her mother to do right, to get medals, but does she need to be like this so much? Bah.

Phew, that is out of my system. Now to all the good points, and there are a lot of them!

I loved our main character, and I also loved her backstory. It was sad, but it made her character even better and likeable. You can just see her struggle, you can see her try to cope. She is determined, but also sweet, responsible and much more. I loved that instead of spending a summer doing nothing at all she decided to take a job at the Timber Ridge part, and help out a girl her age. Not many girls of her age would do that, so I was just squeeing in happiness.
I also loved her when she was riding (and caring for) horses. She is amazing, and I am sure she can get really far if she follows more lessons.
I have to applaud for her as well for her determination and the fact that she didn’t let Angela take over. That she just stuck her ground, that she didn’t let go of any of her ideals. That requires guts, many girls would just have complied to Angela, but not this girl.
Her secret, and how that was handled? On the one hand I liked how it was handled, and how it was solved, but on the other time I felt it was rushed. Like that part needed to be quickly done and gone with so the story could move to the right parts.

Holly. Even though she is in a wheelchair she is an amazing character with a strong will and even stronger determination. Nothing stops her from trying things. She never stops hoping she will ride again, she never left her horse, she just kept on going. And sure life wasn’t easy, but this girl wasn’t easily beaten. It is amazing.

So we got 2 strong characters who are so sweet and nice together, and then we also have an amazing fun, drama-filled story that will grab you and will not let you go until the end.

I will be sure to read this series further. I am not sure when, but I hope to get the second book soon. 🙂
I would also recommend this book to everyone. Yes, it has some tropes that are best to be erased, but it also has great characters and a fun story. Also lots of horses, riding and more!


2 thoughts on “Review for Keeping Secrets

  1. Thank you, Twirling Princess, for reviewing my book. It was such a lovely surprise to find this via Mention today. I’m so glad you enjoyed it, and yes, the mean girl trope is alive and well in middle-grade horse book land. I’ve talked to young readers about this and they tell me that Angela is “nothing” compared to the mean barn princesses at their stables.

    They love reading about her. But if you continue with the series you will find that while she’s still up to her old tricks there are times when we get a glimpse behind the curtain and find out why she’s so unhappy and unpleasant.

    Again, thanks for the fabulous review. I’ve posted it to the Timber Ridge Facebook page.

    1. You’re welcome! It is so nice to hear you found my review, and that you enjoyed it. 🙂
      Wow, so the mean girl isn’t only alive in books about horses, but also in real life? Yikes. I hope those girls in real life are just as awesome as handling these girls as they are in the books. But it is interesting to hear that this is something that happens in real life as well. I never knew (yes, a big fan of horses and books, but sadly never been able to ride due to allergies).

      Yeah, I saw a few hints here and there in the first book as well. That she is truly trying to impress her mom, and that there is something deeper going on. I am happy to hear that there will be more glimpses behind the curtains as the series progresses, I always love it when characters get more backstory, even if they are the unpleasant, evil ones. It just gives more insight in them, and in the end, often makes me want to root for the mean girl. Yes, that has happened quite a few times. That I would hate the girl at first, but later I would be rooting for her to make friends, to get nicer, and to deal with her problems.

      You’re welcome! Thank you for sharing my review!

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