Title: Keeping Secrets (Essien Trilogy Book 1)
Author: Kiru Taye
Genre: Contemporary Romance
Publisher: Decadent Publishing Company
Publication date: May 2014
Reasons for reading: Received this as free ebook from the author.
Have you ever loved someone and didn’t even know it? That’s the dilemma facing Felix Essien when he wakes from a coma to find he is married to the most beautiful and sensual woman he’s ever known. He cannot remember her or their wedding; he who had sworn never to get married or to give his heart to another. Yet, he feels an intense bond with her that he intends to explore fully.
Ebony can’t believe her good fortune when her paper husband wakes not remembering the temporary marriage arrangement with no intimacies he’d proposed, and is now the adoring husband she’s always dreamt of. She plans to make the most of the passion blossoming between them. However, would he still feel that way when he regains his memory and realises she’s been keeping secrets and their marriage is not what he thinks it is?
I must admit that while this is not the first of Kiru’s books I’ve read, Keeping Secrets is the first of her books to hook me from the word go. Well that is not entirely true. Her other books I read hooked me but Keeping Secrets did so in a forceful way. The book actually forced you to take a big note of it.! It is that very well written, with rich and poetic settings in Lagos, Nigeria. Maybe that was one factor that got to me; I mean Ghana and Nigerian are sisters so to speak but hei, we are no where near the grandeur and opulence of the nouveux riche in Nigeria! :-) And this was well displayed in Keeping Secrets with the opulence understated!
The Essiens are the kings of African finance. A close-knit family, their father is the patriarch of a finance dynasty that ranges from retail to investment banking spanning the African continent. Yet all is not as it seems.
The story of Ebony and Felix, one of the Essien sons, is so gripping and fast paced, unfolding as you read along in flashback, thus the suspense and intrigue very well maintained till the end. As we all know, keeping secrets in any relationship especially marriage might be a big recipe for disaster and both Felix and Ebony have secrets that threaten their new marriage. Felix’ memory loss works to Ebony’s advantage but she is never at ease for fear that her husband would regain his memory. Nevertheless, she takes advantage of his obvious concern and passion for her.
The characters are flawed, but naturally and humanely so and therein lies the beauty of the characterization. I love them for the passion and love they show towards each other. The chemistry between them is so palpable, even with Felix’ memory loss. Perhaps, because of his deep love for her, he is able to see that things just do not seem to add up. Both characters are strong and stubborn; Felix, hot, masterful and always in control; Ebony sexy, elegant and independent. In the end, secrets, betrayals and manipulations gave way to love and forgiveness.
I don’t think I have really done justice to this book, honestly. You need to read it and see what I mean. :-) Kiru Taye is an expert storyteller in the romance genre; throwing in Igbo words here and there with doses of of Igbo culture and tradition to give the novel an authentic but contemporary African feel.
Keeping Secrets comes highly recommended to all lovers of romance and even more. I’m actually looking forward to reading the Books 2 and 3 in the series, Making Scandal and Riding Rebel respectively. :-)
When she’s not writing or reading, she’d hanging out with family and friends or traveling. Born in Nigeria, she currently lives in the UK with husband and children.
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