Boldwood Books, Book Review, Death, Family Relationships, Friendship, Grief, NetGalley, Relationships, Women's Fiction

The Story of Our Secrets by Shari Low


Colm O’Flynn was loved by his close circle of family and friends, however his death came too soon for everyone to make peace with their past.  Shauna, his second wife, adored him. But one night she broke their marriage vows, and didn’t get time to ask Colm’s forgiveness. Jess was the first Mrs O’Flynn. Her heart is set on someone new, but will the last one night stand she shared with Colm come back to haunt her?

Colm’s best friend, Dan, is recently divorced. Can he take a second shot at happiness if it means betraying the one person who always had his back?

What no-one knows is that somewhere out there Colm left messages that could set them free to start over again. Can divine intervention help them find Colm’s last wishes before it’s too late to love again?


Ms. Low always knows how to pull the heartstrings and tickle the funny bone. Her emotional and complicated relationships are so genuine and bittersweet while confessions are made and lives are changed.

The story is told from a man’s death bed via phone recording and his wife’s life five years later.

Colm Flynn’s confessions and expressions of love to his family and friends are eye-opening considering his best traits were denial and optimism. His rich humor and honesty made me cry and laugh at the same time as he finally opens up to the people he loves most in the world.

Shauna is Colm’s wife who has been running on autopilot since Colm’s death five years ago. She’s raising their lovely daughter Beth and has become an extended family with Colm’s ex-wife Jess and their twin sons. In addition, Shauna’s BFF Lulu has dumped her husband Dan (Colm’s BFF) for money and fame. There’s even more to this crazy soap opera that I don’t want to give away because it’s fun to just unwrap it all on your own.  Let’s just say you can’t put this book down because the twists and turns keep coming.

I love Shauna and her “be Switzerland” stance due to her volatile friends. Her and Lulu’s upbringing by some messed up parents is shocking and it’s good they had each other growing up. Shauna is the calm to Lulu’s compulsiveness. Shauna has the patience of a saint when it comes to Lulu and her self-absorbed bullshit. Can Shauna move on when an old friend returns to London?

Jess, Colm’s ex-wife and budding life coach, is one of my favorites as she unlocks all of the grief and sadness that is keeping Shauna, Dan, and even Jess herself from moving on with their lives. Will Jess finally tell someone the truth about her feelings?

Dan is so kind and so lucky to be out of Lulu’s clutches until secrets come to light among the group. Can he get over Lulu and move on?

Lulu is very unlikeable with her recklessness and her heartless treatment of her ex-husband Dan. She is a serial cheater during their marriage and finally cruelly dumps him for a man with wealth and fame. But did she make the worst mistake of her life?

I love how Colm’s recording seals everything up for everyone’s life as he gives sound advice, confesses his transgressions, and asks his friends and family to be happy.

Yet another beautiful and well-written story about love and difficult situations between friends and family. One of my favorite novels this year. Please see my other Shari Low reviews for One Day in Summer and What If?

Thank you to Ms. Low for giving me the opportunity to read this book with no expectation of a positive review.


The Story of Our Secrets

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Shari Headshot Dec 4Shari Low is the #1 bestselling author of over 20 novels, including One Day In Winter and My One Month Marriage and a collection of parenthood memories called Because Mummy Said So.  She lives near Glasgow.

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