The Secret Women: A Novel (Paperback)

The Secret Women: A Novel By Sheila Williams Cover Image

The Secret Women: A Novel (Paperback)

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TOP SUMMER 2020 BEACH READ PICK--theSKIMM, PopSugar, Time, Woman's World, Parade, and Bookstr 

The author of Dancing on the Edge of the Roof, now a Netflix film starring Alfre Woodard, returns with a riveting, emotionally rich, novel that explores the complex relationship between mothers and daughters in a fresh, vibrant way—a stunning page-turner for fans of Terry McMillan, Tayari Jones, and Kimberla Lawson Roby.

Elise Armstrong, Carmen Bradshaw, and DeeDee Davis meet in a yoga class. Though vastly different, these women discover they all have one thing in common: their mothers have recently passed away. Becoming fast friends, the trio make a pact to help each other sort through the belongings their mothers’ left behind. But when they find old letters and diaries, Elise, Carmen, and DeeDee are astonished to learn that each of their mothers hid secrets—secrets that will transform their own lives.

Meeting each month over margaritas, the trio share laughter, advice, and support. As they help each other overcome challenges and celebrate successes, Elise, Carmen, and DeeDee gain not only a better understanding of the women their mothers were, but of themselves. They also come to realize they have what their mothers needed most but did not have during difficult times—other women they could trust.

Filled with poignant life lessons, The Secret Women pays tribute to the power of friendship and family and the bonds that tie us together. Beautiful, full of spirit and heart, it is a thoughtful and ultimately uplifting story of unconditional love.

Sheila Williams is the author of six books, including Things Past Telling, The Secret Women, and Dancing on the Edge of the Roof, the basis for the Netflix film Juanita. She is the librettist for the opera Fierce, commissioned by The Cincinnati Opera, with music by William Menefield, which premiered in July, 2022. She lives in northern Kentucky.

"A moving examination of the complexities of motherhood and the strength of female friendship.” — Kirkus Reviews

“This big-hearted, authentic portrayal of both friendship among middle-aged women and the mother-daughter bond will appeal to fans of Terry McMillan.” — Booklist