Bleach House Library – Review of Secrets We Keep

It was my pleasure, as always to feature on the lovely Margaret Bonas Madden’s book blog – Bleach House Library. Margaret is a regular reviewer in the Irish Independent and a champion of Irish writers and good fiction. Here’s a link to her website and her generous review of Secrets We Keep.


Bleach House Library – Secrets We Keep



And here’s the post in full:

Sunday, 12 February 2017

Blog Tour Book Review – ‘Secrets We Keep’ by Faith Hogan.

Two distant relatives, drawn together in companionship are forced to confront their pasts and learn that some people are good at keeping secrets and some secrets are never meant to be kept..

A bittersweet story of love, loss and life. Perfect for the fans of Patricia Scanlan and Adele Parks.

The beautiful old Bath House in Ballytokeep has lain empty and abandoned for decades. For devoted pensioners Archie and Iris, it holds too many conflicting memories of their adolescent dalliances and tragic consequences – sometimes it’s better to leave the past where it belongs.

For highflying, top London divorce lawyer Kate Hunt, it’s a fresh start – maybe even her future. On a winter visit to see her estranged Aunt Iris she falls in love with the Bath House. Inspired, she moves to Ballytokeep leaving her past heartache 600 miles away – but can you ever escape your past or your destiny?


Kate has escaped to Ireland, tired of living the busy life of a London lawyer, and unsure what her future holds. Her great-aunts small hotel, in a sleepy coastal village, is the complete opposite of her city life and she can finally breathe. She finds friends and opportunity in the unlikely location and tries to ignore the newspaper headlines, which bring back unwanted memories.  Meanwhile, great-aunt Iris has her own reasons for trying to forget the past. Family connections link the stories of the past and present and the two women find themselves surrounded by the shadows of untold secrets.

This is Faith Hogans second novel and she blends historical fiction with a contemporary twist. The two main characters are very different. Iris is decades ahead of her fellow Irish women. Falling hook, line and sinker for the proverbial bad-boy, she is whisked away from her problems and deposited in Paris for a year, returning to Ireland with a lighter load and a ready-made job. It doesn’t take long for her to make more bad decisions and her only saving grace is a wonderful man called Archie. In the present day, Kate is also helped by a host of kind souls, although this is a little frustrating as she should be a strong, independent woman and yet seems to completely rely on the help of her new neighbours. I would have liked to see more strength and less dependency.  However, this is a read-in-one-sitting book. Light, warm and entertaining, it is like a brochure for the beautiful area of Co. Mayo but with family secrets thrown in. The waves on the coast are as high as the drama and the ancient buildings are privy to centuries of stories. Faith Hogan is an author to watch out for. She can certainly spin a yarn and reel you in. Her gentle writing style is ideal for fans of Cathy Kelly and Roisin Meaney.


Faith Hogan was born in Ireland.  She gained an Honours Degree in English Literature and Psychology from Dublin City University and a Postgraduate Degree from University College, Galway.  She has worked as a fashion model, an event’s organiser and in the intellectual disability and mental health sector.

She was a winner in the 2014 Irish Writers Centre Novel Fair – an international competition for emerging writers.

Her debut novel, ‘My Husband’s Wives,’ is a contemporary women’s fiction novel set in Dublin. It was published by Aria, (Head of Zeus) in 2016.   ‘Secrets We Keep,’ is her second novel out on Feb 1st 2017..

Faith Hogan Contact:

Twitter (her favourite)

On Facebook:


Web Page.

You can check out the books on:      Faith Hogan

Kobo  Kobo Secrets We Keep                                         Google Play

iBooks –

Secrets We Keep is published by Aria Fiction and is available in PB and ebook format.

Posted by bleachhouselibrary at 00:56

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Labels: Aria, Blog tour, Faith Hogan, female fiction, fiction, Irish Fiction