Category Archives: One Little Secret

Review: One Little Secret by Cate Holahan

Title: One Little Secret by Cate Holahan
Publisher: Crooked Lane Books
Genre: Contemporary, Mystery, Suspense
Length: 320 pages
Book Rating: B+

Complimentary Review Copy Provided by Publisher Through NetGalley


Everyone has a secret. For some, it’s worth dying to protect. For others, it’s worth killing.

The glass beach house was supposed to be the getaway that Susan needed. Eager to help her transplanted family set down roots in their new town—and desperate for some kid-free conversation—she invites her new neighbors to join in on a week-long sublet with her and her workaholic husband.

Over the course of the first evening, liquor loosens inhibitions and lips. The three couples begin picking up on the others’ marital tensions and work frustrations, as well as revealing their own. But someone says too much. And the next morning one of the women is discovered dead on the private beach.

Town detective Gabby Watkins must figure out who permanently silenced the deceased. As she investigates, she learns that everyone in the glass house was hiding something that could tie them to the murder, and that the biggest secrets of all are often in plain sight for anyone willing to look.

A taut, locked room mystery with an unforgettable cast of characters, One Little Secret promises to keep readers’ eyes glued to the pages and debating the blinders that we all put on in the service of politeness.


One Little Secret by Cate Holahan is a riveting domestic murder mystery about a vacation in the Hamptons that turns deadly.

After dropping their offspring at camp, three couples head to the Hamptons for week of R&R. Susan Ahmadi and her husband Nadal have recently relocated to town and she is eager to make friends with their neighbors, Jenny and Louis Murray and Rachel Klein and her husband Ben Hansen. Susan gave up her career to homeschool their autistic son and Nadal is CEO of a tech start up. Jenny is an orthopedic doctor turned sports commentator and Louis is a an ER surgeon. Rachel is a lawyer and her husband Ben is a self-published author who is  stay at home dad.  Tensions flare soon after their arrival and by the next day, one of the wives has been murdered. Everyone in the party seems to be keeping a secret but is one them hiding something that is worth killing over?

Detective Sergeant Gabby Watkins is busy working a possible rape when she is called to the scene of the murder. Recently promoted, Gabby is an experienced investigator and she soon begins interviewing the rest of the group. Of course her first suspect is the victim’s husband but will she find proof he killed his wife? Uncertain whether he is their killer, Gabby and Detective Jason DeMarco continue asking probing questions in order to unearth the truth.

With the narrative weaving back and forth between the day before, the day of and the day after the murder, intriguing information is revealed that adds to the overall tension. The vacation is off to a strained beginning following a testy exchange between a husband and wife which leaves everyone uncomfortable. When shocking information comes to light, a confrontation between one couple turns extremely volatile.  And, last but not least, one of the wives suspects her husband is having an affair.

One Little Secret is an absorbing mystery that has plenty of twist and turns. Although the various characters are a bit hard to tell apart initially, they gradually become fully developed, three dimensional people. The storyline in intriguing and the suspense ratchets up with each startling revelation. Cate Holahan brings the novel to a breath-taking conclusion that is a bit unexpected but completely satisfying. An excellent mystery that I found impossible to put down and highly recommend to readers of the genre.

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Filed under Cate Holahan, Contemporary, Crooked Lane Books, Mystery, One Little Secret, Rated B+, Review, Suspense