Friday, November 16, 2012

Book Review - Secrets of the Red Box, by Vickie Hall

Vickie Hall is a native of Utah, but growing up, lived in the states of Colorado, Idaho, Montana, and Nebraska. When she's not writing, she's composing music, or shopping with her sister. She loves animals of all kinds and camping with her family. Her favorite pastime is watching old movies on TCM, and unashamedly has a crush on Cary Grant.

Purchase link: Amazon 

My blog is one of the stops on an extensive blog tour for Secrets of the Red Box, by Vickie Hall. It is coordinated by Kathy at the I Am A Reader, Not A Writer blog, and includes a Blog Tour Giveaway (see below). I was provided with a copy of the manuscript for this review.

I reviewed a previous novel by Vickie Hall, and can see impressive growth in her as a writer.

Here's the back cover copy for Secrets of the Red Box:

Bonnie has secrets to keep - secrets with the potential to destroy lives, including her own. Running from her destructive and pain filled past, she recreates herself, believing she has escaped the damning evidence hidden in the red box. When her former life is revealed by a cruel twist of fate, Bonnie faces losing everything, including Glen, the only man she’s ever loved. But is Bonnie the woman he thinks she is? Set against the backdrop of the 1940s, Secrets of the Red Box is filled with intrigue and suspense - sure to keep you guessing to the very end!

Secrets of the Red Box is not an ordinary, feel-good romance or mystery. I think I would term it a novel of psychological suspense.

When I began reading, I was not sure where the story was going, but soon, it picked up steam and began to draw me in. At first, Bonnie wasn't a very likeable heroine, certainly not the typical main character, as she lied her way through  several encounters with men who wanted to date her. She had a different background story for each one, and soon began to stumble over her lies. 

Then the author managed to play with my perception of Bonnie, and I began to see her as a victim of her past instead of a cold-hearted, manipulative character. I was amazed that Hall was able to do this so deftly. By the end of the novel, I had true sympathy for Bonnie, and for Glen, the man who was able to inspire changes in her for the better.

Hall gives clear road marks when she switches time frames, which I appreciated. Sometimes, a reader is left to guess where a story has jumped to, but not here. I liked being able to immerse myself in the past, as Hall clearly did a lot of research to get to know the times and the ambiance of the novel's setting. I felt like I was a young girl again, with mentions of familiar surroundings out of my own memories. The forties were another time and place in America, and Hall brought them vividly to life. 

I enjoyed reading Secrets of the Red Box, and recommend it as a fascinating look into a tortured soul's journey toward redemption.

Click here for the Rafflecopter Giveaway that ends on November 25th: 

  • $25 Amazon Gift Card or $25 PayPal Cash from Author Vickie Hall + copy of Secrets of the Red Box (US - Paperback, Kindle ebook - International)
  • Paperback copy of Secrets of the Red Box (US only)
  • Kindle Ebook copy of Secrets of the Red Box (International)

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