Thursday, July 28, 2022

Book review of The Secret Keeper by Siobhan Curham

French Village Diaries book review The Secret Keeper Siobhan Curham
The Secret Keeper by Siobhan Curham

The Secret Keeper by Siobhan Curham


Nazi-occupied Paris, 1942. “I want to create a world where we are free to be together, to be in love,” he whispered. I gulp down the sobs building in my throat. “I want that too. I’ll come back to you. I swear I’ll come back.”

Elena Garcia knows that the mission she has been tasked with is her most dangerous yet. With a tearful goodbye to the man she has grown to love, the dark-eyed and warm-hearted Santiago Lozano, she hurries to catch the train to the drop-off point, the coded maps she is delivering for the resistance concealed in a pack of playing cards in her purse.

As she leaves the underground meeting, she hears heavy footsteps closing in behind her. Her heart pounds, and a dark figure comes into her line of sight. Expertly fighting off her attacker, Elena races back to the station, barely making it onto the train. She is forced to confront the worst: her cover is blown and now nowhere will be safe. Somebody close to her is a traitor, but when you live in the shadows, how do you know who you can really trust?

To stay alive, Elena must flee the country – and that means leaving Santiago behind. But she refuses to abandon her mission while Europe is still in the clutches of the enemy, and she will not leave Santiago to face the wrath of the Gestapo alone.

But when Elena uncovers that the love of her life has been having meetings with high-ranking government officials and hears German officials greeting him by name in the street, it’s clear that Santiago has his own secrets.

Elena must now ask herself: should she risk everything to save Santiago… or was he the one who betrayed her to the enemy? And now, with millions of innocent lives across Europe at stake, how can she know what is the right choice?

An epic, gripping and emotional wartime novel based on the true stories of the female spies sent into occupied Europe. Fans of The Alice Network, Soraya M. Lane and Pam Jenoff will be totally hooked.

French Village Diaries book review The Secret Keeper Siobhan Curham
The Secret Keeper by Siobhan Curham


My Review

Having enjoyed three previous historical novels from Siobhan Curham, I was delighted to get my hands on her latest book. Chapter one, page one and nine words at the end of the first paragraph – that was all it took to hook me into another great read.


Elena was a strong character who I warmed to immediately. Desperate to full fill her dreams of becoming an actress, she was working in a diner as she waited for her break. When an opportunity came her way, it was not at all what she was expecting, as she found herself undergoing training for espionage before being sent to Europe.


She might have grown up in America, but her Mexican heritage was just one thing that helped her in her new role, the other was her determination to free France for her beloved Grand-mère Rose. It was the addition of Rose’s letters to Elena from occupied France that I particularly loved, and that played such an important part in this book for me.


As the reality of espionage in a foreign country hit our heroine, this book raised my pulse on many occasions, and with the suspense, twists and danger, I was often on the edge of my seat in this fast-paced novel. The locations came to life, the historical side added interest and the emotion and passion were spot on.


As with Siobhan’s previous books, it was obvious that this was a well-researched novel that felt believable from the beginning, even though it was very different to her other books I’ve read. 


If you enjoy historical fiction, then I recommend you add The Secret Keeper by Siobhan Curham to your summer reading list.


Purchase Link 


French Village Diaries book review The Secret Keeper Siobhan Curham
Siobhan Curham


Author Bio


Siobhan Curham is an award-winning author, ghost writer, editor and writing coach. She has also written for many newspapers, magazines and websites, including The Guardian, Breathe magazine, Cosmopolitan, Writers’ Forum,, and Spirit & Destiny. Siobhan has been a guest on various radio and TV shows, including Woman’s Hour, BBC News, GMTV and BBC Breakfast. And she has spoken at businesses, schools, universities and literary festivals around the world, including the BBC, Hay Festival, Cheltenham Festival, Bath Festival, Ilkley Festival, London Book Fair and Sharjah Reading Festival.


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You might like my reviews of Siobhan’s other novels:

An American in Paris 

Beyond this Broken Sky

The Paris Network


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