Monday, March 30, 2020

Manview: Little Secrets by Anna Snoekstra

Welcome to another Manview. For those of you who are new to Manviews, these are reviews of romance novels specifically from a man's perspective, the reader today is my very own Steve. You can find previous Manviews here.

Little Secrets by Anna Snoekstra

My rating: star star star star star

Heat rating: Flame  Flame  Flame

Little Secrets by Anna Snoekstra

ManviewLittle Secrets by Anna Snoekstra is not a romance novel and the Manview review series is all about romance reviews and opinion pieces. Little Secrets is a thriller and an excellent one. So why is this book being reviewed by Mr. Manview? Because it is an opportunity to compare romance with thrillers. There are some similarities and some differences.

I loved this book as it had a number of plot twists which made for an intriguing story. And the reality of life in an Australian town well past its peak was eye-opening. Rose, the heroine, wants to get out and was hoping to do so through her journalism and winning a cadetship to a larger town newspaper. And she accomplished that, but not without pain and not with the ‘happy ending’ you get in a romance novel. This was the first major difference; the heroine did not end up marrying the hero. In fact, the hero did not want to see Rose again.

Rose and the hero did have sex mid-way through the book though and that is similar to a romance novel. And then some drama occurred that put the hero and Rose’s relationship at risk. In a romance novel that drama is always resolved and the hero and heroine get together and get married. Not so in a thriller. While Rose got what she wanted which was to get a journalism cadetship and be able to escape the dying town she grew up in, she did not get her man (even though she had great sex with the hero along the way).

While I loved the story line and Snoekstra’s presentation of how people perceived their fate living in a town past its peak, I did not like most of the characters. I loved the hero and I loved Rose’s best friend, Mia, but most of the other characters, including Rose, had more flaws than they did characteristics that could be admired. But that was one of the aspects that made Little Secrets such a great read. Everyone in town saw their fate differently. Some hated being in the town and would do anything to escape; some hated their existence, but felt unable to do anything about it; some took matters into their own hands and worked around it by breaking the law, and others, like Mia, just accepted their fate and made the most of it.

While the plots and sub-plots were intriguing and made the book a great read, it was really the scene (the town it was set in) and the characters in the town that made this such a great read. I felt drawn into how all the characters thought and made the decisions they did. 

A thriller does not provide a guaranteed happy ending nor should it. Little Secrets provided suspense, surprise, and great insights into people’s lives and how they react in various situations. And that is what makes this book by Ms. Snoekstra 5 stars. I look forward to reading her other thrillers soon.

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About the author

Anna Snoekstra

Anna Snoekstra: Website - Facebook - Twitter - Goodreads - Amazon

About the reviewer

Steve Shipley

Steve Shipley: Website - Facebook - Twitter - Amazon

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  1. Sounds an interesting read. However I feel compelled to point out that a romance novel doesn't always have a hero and heroine. And if it does they don't always get married. Quite a few these days feature 2 heroes, or 2 heroines. Also some of the best have happy for now endings, or some ending that suits both parties whilst remaining together.
    Stay safe

    1. Good point. What comprises a "happy couple" is vastly different now in romance with MM, FF, MFM, RH, and every combination you can think of in-between.