In high school, everyone has secrets. Even well-brought-up Emma Fraser.
Emma’s sophomore year started out all wrong. First, her best friend Andy confessed to losing his virginity leaving Emma all alone in the V-Club. Then the rest of her friends got weird and suddenly Emma finds herself feeling like the people she knows best have become total strangers. And total strangers are becoming friends.
When Deegan Burke, a rich, gorgeous senior, asks Emma to be his date for the prom, Emma thinks her luck has begun to change. But rather than being able to bask in this newfound glory, her whole world starts to unravel. And when secrets that once seemed so innocent start to take a very dangerous turn, Emma discovers that true friends are friends no matter what…and some secrets aren’t worth keeping.
Powerful. Daring. Courageous. Wendi Nunnery brings blurry high school issues into focus with her novel, The Best Kept Secret. This fictitious tale exemplifies true teenage situations, giving readers an in-depth look at bullying, sexuality, and relationships in a high school setting.
Emma is the main character in this tangled web of secrets. She's the innocent fifteen year old girl who knows what going through high school can entail. Readers will be able to see themselves in Emma, relating to the school years that taught them the most. Emma is very cautious and uncertain of what to do when her friends become sexually active and boys start showing interest in her. It's a chaotic and confusing time for a teenage girl. And we've all been there. Readers will empathize with Emma's situation and her uncertainty. They'll understand what she's going through and connect with her quickly. The foundation for a reader/character connection is swiftly set and built upon with each chapter.
The plot is surprising and a bit on the controversial side of topics. Emma faces the idea of losing her virginity after her friends admit to losing theirs. Then there's prom. Usually sophomores don't get to go, but two seniors are showing interest in asking her. This is only the beginning of the chaos and drama of Emma's sophomore year. The Best Kept Secret tackles underage drinking, bullying, virginity, and crime. It leaps over the boundaries and will shock readers with the truth. I was completely stunned by the ending. I did not see it coming at all. Well, except the letter.
The truth is that high school can be heart breaking, soul stomping, and completely unfair. This is that kind of story. The kind that ends with tears and tissues.
Rating: 4/5 Cups
Wendi Nunnery is the author of The Mayfield Family Story. She is also a regular contributor to The Huffington Post and The Simply Beloved, a lifestyle website for women of faith. She is a proud alumna of Georgia Southern University and, at any given time, you can find her with a cup of coffee and a book. She lives, loves, and mothers in Atlanta, Georgia. The Best Kept Secret is her first novel.