Secrets of Southern Girls by: Haley Harrigan

Secrets of Southern GirlsSecrets of Southern Girls by Haley Harrigan
My rating: 3 of 5 stars

The details hardly matter, once your story is complete. all those memories turn blurry at the edges, and that anger and panic and guilt wears away to something softer.

Julie Portland is haunted by her past and the death of her best friend Reba. Reba was everything that Julie was not and in Julie’s mind Reba was saint where Julie was the sinner. Julie and Reba became friends when Julie’s parents were killed in auto accident and she came to live with her aunt and her cousin Taylor. Reba and her family lived next door and they became fast and best friends. Each girl looking to the other as someone they needed. Julie lived care free and Reba stuck to the rules. It all changed when she met August. August became the forbidden fruit in Reba’s life and the catalyst of her own identity crisis.

A thriller of the triangle kind when 10 years later, August appears at Julie’s door in New York urging her to come back home in Mississippi to find the answers to Reba’s death. In finding the answers, they discovered a Reba that they both did not recognize. Will the love they had for Reba be able to survive in spite of what was discovered? Will justice be served in knowing how and why Reba died?

This was a conflicted read. It started out strong until you discovered what kind of characters were developed in this love triangle. Julie not fitting in the community and finding purity in her friend Reba. The expectations were great and because of those expectations, Julie was very hypocritical to her friend. Reba who always went with the flow, discovered her own desires that led to deceit and ultimately losing who she really was. August in my mind was not impressive but had his own agenda. Toby who was played as the villain may have been the victim of his making.

The narration was mixed as it went from present to past. August and Julie went back to Mississpi to find Reba’s diary hoping to find answers. The diary told Reba’s story. This is one of those that there were things that I liked about and things that I did not. There is some language and the painful narration of Reba sexual encounters. Painful in that she was lost and needy and using sex as weapon. The novel deals with racism and a friend that was lost forever.

A Special Thank You to Sourcebooks Landmark and Netgalley for the ARC and the opportunity to post an honest review.

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