Macmillan Childrens Publishing Group
Secret Keepers

Secret Keepers

A Novel

Mindy Friddle

St. Martin's Press




At age seventy-two, Emma Hanley plans to escape small-town Palmetto, South Carolina, and travel the globe. But when her fickle husband dies in undignified circumstances, Emma finds herself juggling the needs of her adult children. Her once free-spirited daughter Dora turns to compulsive shopping and a controlling husband to forget her wayward past. Her son Bobby still lives with her, afflicted with an illness that robbed him of his childhood promise.

When Dora's old flame Jake Cary returns to Palmetto with a broken heart and a gift for gardening, the town becomes filled with mysterious, potent botanicals and memories long forgotten. Soon enough, Jake and his ragtag group of helpers begin to unearth the secrets that have divided the Hanleys for decades.

Written with the warmth of Lee Smith and the magical touch of Alice Hoffman, Secret Keepers is a beguiling second novel by the acclaimed author of The Garden Angel.


Secret Keepers

am a ranth (AM-ah-ranth) n.

1. Any of various annuals of the genus Amaranthus having dense green or reddish clusters of tiny flowers and including several weeds, ornamentals, and food...


Praise for Secret Keepers

“Beguiling . . . A poignant and reassuring tale of regret and redemption.” —Booklist

“With fluid prose and telling details, Friddle deftly captures the downward pull of the past and the Southern penchant for mythmaking.” —Publishers Weekly

“A beguiling debut novel. Friddle . . . handles the juxtaposition of two highly eccentric cultures--small-town Southern society and small-college English department--with a light, quirky touch that keeps the story moving along and steadily entertaining.” —The Atlanta Journal-Constitution

“A comic delight . . . Winning characters and piquant wit, with an underpinning of graciousness: a standout.” —Kirkus Reviews (Starred Review)

Reviews from Goodreads

About the author

Mindy Friddle

Mindy Friddle received the Individual Artist Fellowship in Prose from the South Carolina Arts Commission for 2008--2009. A master gardener, she lives in Greenville, South Carolina. Secret Keepers is her second novel.

Mindy Friddle

© Josh Norris

From the Publisher

St. Martin's Press

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