|Plot Summary of A Secret Word|
Touchstone, 2004, 13.00
In 1986 Fort Smith, Arkansas, three tenth grade coeds and the boyfriend of one of the trio is in a car crash during an off campus lunch. The boy dies in the crash bonding the two with this tragedy. Two of the female students were already close friends coming from the elite of the community while the third belonged to the working poor. Not long after graduating, the affluent duo Chandler and Sarah leave the hicks for the bright lights of Broadway while Leigh remains behind toiling at minimum wage.
Over the years, Chandler and Sarah enjoy the swinging life of the Big Apple until a tragedy forces the former to come home. While Sarah continues jet setting, Leigh tries to help Chandler adapt to her new life.
The novel is an intriguing look over a fifteen-year span at three individuals tied together through the starting point tragedy. The low-key novel rotates first person narratives so that the audience sees the same event or time in separate first-person chapters. The crucial element that makes the tale work is that regardless of whether you remain behind in Fort Smith, move to Manhattan, or return to your small hometown, a person can never escape a pivotal moment calamity that ensures you can never truly leave home.
Harriet Klausner, Resident Scholar
|Review Analysis of A Secret Word|
Our unique search engine provides a wealth of detail about books by breaking them down into many different literary elements, all of which are searchable (click here).
Ratings are on a 1-10 scale (Low to High)
Tone of book?
Time/era of story
- present (2000-2010)
- best friends
Is this an adult or child's book?
- Adult or Young Adult Book
Coping with loss of loved one(s)
- good friends
GROUP of women story?
- business executive
- White (American)
How sensitive is this character?
- middling sensitive to others' feelings
Sense of humor
- Strong but gentle sense of humor
- Smarter than most other characters
- very athletic
How much descriptions of surroundings?
- 3 ()
- Deep South
- mostly 1st
Accounts of torture and death?
- generic/vague references to death/punishment
- No single main character?
Amount of dialog
- significantly more dialog than descript
Click here for more information about this book
Jennifer Paddock Resident Scholar Profiles|
Note: the views expressed here are only those of the reviewer(s).
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