May 21, 2013

Family secrets

The Whole Truth

And Nothing But The Truth

Secrets cause a lot of pain and misunderstandings in these two novels by Kit Pearson. The strain of keeping them is wholly apparent in Polly, almost nine, who is sent to live with her grandmother after her father's mysterious death. Polly's older sister, Maud, seems much more comfortable keeping silent. Set in 1932 British Columbia, the two novels wonderfully evoke comfortable island life, social sensibilities, and the complexities of family. Above all, they show the fallibilities of even those closest to you, and their propensities for change.

Pearson ably captures the thoughts and feelings of a maturing young girl, making for a thoroughly believable and appealing character, despite her faults. The epilogue marking the end of the second book is extraordinarily happy, bringing both novels to a close in the best of ways.

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