The Secrets We Keep by Deb Loughead
My rating: 4 of 5 stars
Kit Stitski is dead. He fell into the quarry during a party and drowned and ever since June no one has been able to come forward to say what really happened to him. Now that school has started, his mother is making a plea with the students to come forward with what they know. Was it just a tragic accident or did someone do something to Kit? Clementine was there, she spoke with Kit and sent him off to the bushes when he said he had to go to the bathroom. Ellie was there too, she is keeping Clementine's secret, but does she have a secret of her own? Jake was there, in fact, Kit followed him to the party. And Mac was there with Ellie, did he do something to Kit?
As a new school year starts, everyone is reflecting on the tragic night at the end of the previous school year. They've had the whole summer to think about it and now that school is back in session, Ms. Stitski wants answers and closure about what happened with her son. When she shows up for the first day of school, Jake, Clementine, Ellie, and Mac are all on edge because they feel they are responsible for Kit's death. They can't imagine that this was just an accident, something must of happened to him when he was out of their sight. But is that possible?
I really enjoyed this YA novel by Deb Loughead. I was a quick read that kept me engrossed the entire time. The author never really mentions where the story is set, and it could be any town in any country. Kids will be kids and will do what they want despite the rules set by their parents. None of the kids should have been at the quarry that night. It's a dangerous place and even more so when it is dark. Kit was mentally challenged, but loved by all in the school. The students recall happy moments with Kit that help his family to heal after this difficult situation. This is a story you could see in today's news stories. A tragic accident that took the life of an innocent person.
I think people of all ages will enjoy this book. I think it is especially important for youth to read. It has a message of honesty in the book. About being able to talk to your parents about the things that are going on in your world. The book has a strong family focus and includes diverse family structures that are seen today. I recommend this book for anyone who is looking for a good novel to read.
Thank you to NetGalley and to Dundurn for a copy of this book in exchange for my review.
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