Can You Keep A Secret by Caroline Overington

‘Can You Keep A Secret’ is a psychological thriller. It is a disturbing novel featuring some very disturbed characters.

Caitlin and Colby are both very manipulative people. They first met on a yacht cruising the Queensland Whitsunday Islands. Caitlin was a deck hand responsible for serving food and drinks and entertaining the guests. Lachlan Colbert (Colby) and his two friends are from Manhattan. They work as traders working ridiculously long hours for large sums of money. Colby’s first reaction to the beautiful suntanned blonde Caitlin is – she’ll do if nothing better comes along. Caitlin has no money, left home at 16, a sick mother and a mostly absent father. They could not be more different, but somehow the romance blossoms.

After a second visit to Australia, Colby flies Caitlin to New York to visit. She is there for 9/11 and after witnessing the 2nd tower fall, she is too anxious to get on a plane to fly home. By this stage Colby has had enough of her but feels obliged to look after her. Somehow they end up getting married.

Caitlin gets the big house and the rich wife lifestyle and a husband more married to his job than to her. After failing in their efforts to have a child, they decide to adopt a baby from Russia.

Much of the story is told through Caitlin’s blog which she started at the beginning of the adoption process. I would have loved to see Colby’s views at the time.

Eventually we get to the scene at which the novel started. A skinny, hysterical woman standing outside a burning house screaming for her son inside.

The final twist was completely unexpected!


I have mixed feelings about this novel. Most of it was a page turner although I found some parts of it a bit unlikely.

The twist felt a bit sudden – more input from Colby before this point would have been good.

I wasn’t quite sure what statement the novel was trying to make. If it was about mental illness, then nobody seemed to care very much.

I have been enjoying Caroline Overington’s novels and will continue to read them.


Book Published 2014


See a full list of books by Caroline Overington

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Filed under Australian Author, Book Reviews, Domestic, Overington, Caroline, Thriller

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