Title: Secrets in the Shadows.
Author: V.C. Andrews (ghost-written by Andrew Neiderman).
Genre: Fiction, teen fiction, mystery, thriller.
Publication Date: 2008.
Summary: Everyone says her mother was crazy. Is she doomed to repeat the past? Up in the attic, that's where Alice's mother used to escape to and where, so Alice has been told, she plotted the murder of her own stepfather. Now, years later, with her mother locked away for life, the attic is where Alice finds comfort in her lonesomeness, writing poetry and painting pictures. When she finally finds the courage to come out of her shell and attends the prom with a cute, popular boy, the night turns tragic - leading Alice back to the shadows she had fled.
My rating: 5/10
♥ She didn’t come right out and call me a mistake. She told me I was as unexpected as a sudden summer thunderstorm. I actually used to think I fell out of the sky, came floating down like a leaf from a tree to settle at their front door. Sometimes, I wished it was true, wished that I had been left on their doorstep. It was also so much easier to accept when you believed a stork brought you to your family. That way a baby was his or her own little person and arrived without any baggage, and especially without any dark past. Stork babies were truly Adam and Eve, original, born with no past, only a future.
♥ “Think of your life as a courtroom argument,” she said. “Be careful about how you lay the foundation, and then argue vigorously for yourself. The rest of the world is the jury, and they have one clear ability. They can see insincerity, of course, but they can see a lack of self-confidence even easier...”
♥ Whenever my grandfather and I rode these back roads and saw these homes at nighttime, I often thought about the similarities with the way we lived, especially how I lived. To me people wrapped their homes around d themselves and, like the citizens of a fortress town in the Middle Ages, pulled up their drawbridges. Instead of looking out of the windows at the world and imagining all sorts of things going on outside in the darkness, they sat around television sets and looked at what someone else had imagined for them.
My grandfather told me that when he was young a few years younger than I was, he and his family listened to the radio and had to create their own pictures in their own minds from the words and sounds they heard.
“People,” he said, “used to sit around campfires before that and tell each other stories. Nothing’s changed except the delivery system. What’s important, what seems to matter the most, is not being alone in the dark.”
♥ “I don’t know. It’s like...”
“Like you’re letting go of all the bad stuff?”
“And that makes you feel guilty?”
“Then let’s both feel guilty,” he said, “like Adam and Eve. We’ll both break the rules.”
But was it funny? Should we laugh and be happy?
After all, they lost paradise.
♥ It’s easier to say okay than to say anything else, I decided. People leave you be when you agree with them.
♥ Countries broke treaties, families broke loyalties, lovers broke sacred oaths, businesspeople broke contracts. Why was anything ever written or said to bind us to promises? We have been victims of them ever since the Garden of Eden. To me, for me, whenever anyone made a promise, he or she was lying to not only whoever had received the promise but also, more important, to himself or herself.