Two Can Keep a Secret
By Karen McManus
Published January 8, 2019 by Delacorte Press
Echo Ridge, Vermont is a lovely small town with a bad history for high school girls.
In 1996, Sarah Corcoran vanished without a trace.
In 2014, Homecoming Queen Lacey Kilduff was brutally murdered and her killer was never caught.
In 2019, history seems to be repeating itself.
Twins Ellery and Ezra Corcoran have to move to Echo Ridge to live with their grandmother while their mother Sadie is in rehab. Sadie fled Echo Ridge 23 years earlier after twin sister Sarah disappeared, and the twins have never been there before. Ellery is a true crime addict, and she’s fascinated by the mysteries of Sarah’s disappearance and Lacey’s murder, neither of which her mother would ever talk about.
Ellery befriends Malcolm Kelly, who’s older brother Declan was the main suspect in Lacey’s murder. Declan was Lacey’s boyfriend, and although he was not arrested, most of Echo Ridge still thinks he did it. Malcolm has grown up in the shadow of this suspicion. As Homecoming gets closer, there are anonymous threats against the Homecoming court, and when another young woman goes missing, Malcolm falls under suspicion.
Two Can Keep a Secret is a compulsively readable thriller. Ellery and Malcolm are great characters. I loved Ellery’s obsession with true crime, and it makes a lot of sense for her character given her family’s unsolved mystery. Malcolm lives on the other end of the spectrum, just trying to live under the radar, avoiding the attention that comes with being the brother of a suspected murderer. The story is told in dual perspectives. I felt for both characters. Ellery has bounced around a lot because of her flighty mother, and Malcolm is viewed with suspicion by many just because of his brother.
This book also has awesome fall vibes, since it takes place in New England and the twins work at the town’s horror amusement park, Fright Farm (formerly called Murderland, but they changed the name after Lacey was actually murdered on the premises).
There are a lot of twists and turns, and the reader is thrown right into the action when the twins and their ride home from the airport come across a dead body in the middle of the road. There are a lot of potential suspects, and I love that Ellery suspects literally everyone, including the guy she wants to kiss. I like a mystery where I have no idea who the killer is, and I was pretty surprised by the ending.
I received an ARC from Amazon Vine.