Find your next favorite book

Become a member today and read free for 14 days.

Start your free 14 days

Two little girls banished from a neighborhood birthday party take a wrong turn down an unfamiliar Baltimore street—and encounter an abandoned stroller with an infant inside. What happens next is shocking and terrible, and three families are irreparably destroyed.

Seven years later, Alice Manning and Ronnie Fuller, now eighteen, are released from "kid prison" to begin their lives over again. But the secrets swirling around the original crime continue to haunt the parents, the lawyers, the police—all the adults in Alice and Ronnie's lives. And now another child has disappeared, under freakishly similar circumstances …

Topics: Baltimore, Maryland, Psychological, Kidnapping, Missing Persons, Murder, Babies, Secrets, and Death

Published: HarperCollins on
ISBN: 9780061808500
List price: $9.99
Read on Scribd mobile: iPhone, iPad and Android.
Availability for Every Secret Thing
With a 30 day free trial you can read online for free
  1. This book can be read on up to 6 mobile devices.
The plot to this suspense-thriller suffers from a “twist” ending that is neither adequately built up to or remotely surprising. The characters are one-dimensional and ultimately uninteresting as well. Snore.more
Every Secret Thing is a standalone mystery that is not part of the Tess Monaghan detective series. This dark story from Lippman was inspired by a real crime in which two ten-year-old boys killed a three-year-old boy. In Every Secret Thing, the perpetrators are two eleven-year-old lower class white girls, Alice and Ronnie, and the victim is a nine-month-old baby named Olivia from an upper class black family. Thus, Lippman explores not only the crime and the nature of the juvenile justice system, but also the intersection of race and class in Baltimore County.Alice and Ronnie are each automatically released from prison at age eighteen, and simultaneously, a rash of child abductions occur. Most of the children reappear shortly after they are taken, until Maveen Little’s three-year-old girl is taken, and she doesn’t return.Evaluation: Nothing is as straightforward as it seems in this story. Even the twists don’t resolve neatly; the book is in fact more like “real life” than one might want! Interestingly, almost all the characters are female. There is no romance to lighten the mood, nor actually much of anything that lightens the mood. This is a good book, but one that had me longing to go back to the brighter life of Tess Monaghan.Note: This book won both the Anthony Award (for mystery novels) and the Barry Award (for crime novels) in 2004.more
This was Laura Lippman’s first stand-alone mystery, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s a slow-building, sneaky mystery. We know from the start that something terrible happens to baby Olivia Barnes and that Alice and Ronnie were responsible, but the details leak out slowly, drip by drip. The best part of the book is that you’re never quite sure whose side you should be on. Is Alice as innocent as she seemed? Is Ronnie the sociopath she first seemed to be? What did Alice’s mother have to do with it? Why is the public defender so invested? Even the victim’s mother, Cynthia Barnes, isn’t particularly likeable. In fact, she’s quite bitchy throughout most of the book. You want to excuse her behavior, but is there a point where enough is enough?There are some quite surprising twists in the story, and that’s what makes it extra special for me. It’s hard for me to find a book with a plot that surprises me. This just cements Lippman’s place on my "Damn, She’s Good" list.more
This was better-written than I expected a mass-market paperback to be. And it had a good twist at the end. However, I disliked the "born bad" explanation for the murder; that is just as "easy" and stereotypical as blaming the girl from the tough home.more
Read all 24 reviews

Reviews

The plot to this suspense-thriller suffers from a “twist” ending that is neither adequately built up to or remotely surprising. The characters are one-dimensional and ultimately uninteresting as well. Snore.more
Every Secret Thing is a standalone mystery that is not part of the Tess Monaghan detective series. This dark story from Lippman was inspired by a real crime in which two ten-year-old boys killed a three-year-old boy. In Every Secret Thing, the perpetrators are two eleven-year-old lower class white girls, Alice and Ronnie, and the victim is a nine-month-old baby named Olivia from an upper class black family. Thus, Lippman explores not only the crime and the nature of the juvenile justice system, but also the intersection of race and class in Baltimore County.Alice and Ronnie are each automatically released from prison at age eighteen, and simultaneously, a rash of child abductions occur. Most of the children reappear shortly after they are taken, until Maveen Little’s three-year-old girl is taken, and she doesn’t return.Evaluation: Nothing is as straightforward as it seems in this story. Even the twists don’t resolve neatly; the book is in fact more like “real life” than one might want! Interestingly, almost all the characters are female. There is no romance to lighten the mood, nor actually much of anything that lightens the mood. This is a good book, but one that had me longing to go back to the brighter life of Tess Monaghan.Note: This book won both the Anthony Award (for mystery novels) and the Barry Award (for crime novels) in 2004.more
This was Laura Lippman’s first stand-alone mystery, and it didn’t disappoint. It’s a slow-building, sneaky mystery. We know from the start that something terrible happens to baby Olivia Barnes and that Alice and Ronnie were responsible, but the details leak out slowly, drip by drip. The best part of the book is that you’re never quite sure whose side you should be on. Is Alice as innocent as she seemed? Is Ronnie the sociopath she first seemed to be? What did Alice’s mother have to do with it? Why is the public defender so invested? Even the victim’s mother, Cynthia Barnes, isn’t particularly likeable. In fact, she’s quite bitchy throughout most of the book. You want to excuse her behavior, but is there a point where enough is enough?There are some quite surprising twists in the story, and that’s what makes it extra special for me. It’s hard for me to find a book with a plot that surprises me. This just cements Lippman’s place on my "Damn, She’s Good" list.more
This was better-written than I expected a mass-market paperback to be. And it had a good twist at the end. However, I disliked the "born bad" explanation for the murder; that is just as "easy" and stereotypical as blaming the girl from the tough home.more
I can’t say my first experience with author, Laura Lippman was a positive one. I really didn’t enjoy Every Secret Thing. I thought the plot jumped around to much. There seemed to be far to many unnecessary story-lines. So many times well reading the book I was thinking. O.k. Where is Ms. Lippman going with this? Also I kept thinking. Can you please get to the point. Pages and pages of descriptions and pointless chatter between characters that didn’t really have a part in the story. I won’t give up on Ms. Lippman totally. I’ll read a few more of her books. Hopefully she has something else worth-while reading.more
Synopsis: Alice Manning and Ronnie Fuller, two 11-year-old Baltimore girls, were on their way home from a birthday party when their lives were changed forever. The girls spot a child, unattended in a baby carriage. Deciding to help, the girls take the baby and try to care for it. But the baby dies, and Alice and Ronnie are sent away for 7 years.At the age of 18, the two girls are released and instructed to have no contact with one another. Each girl is to try to build a new life for herself. But when babies start to disappear in situations startlingly similar to Alice and Ronnie's crime, people begin to wonder whether the two girls should have been released and what really happened to the baby the girls were charged with murdering.Review: The premise of this novel is very intriguing. Two 11-year-old girls kill an infant, serve time in jail, are released, and then similar crimes begin to occur. I think, especially given the unfortunate events that occur in our society, children committing murder does hold a bit of fascination for the reader.With that being said, I wasn't blown away by this novel. I enjoyed it, particularly the first half of the novel, but it ended up being one of those books that are more exciting in the dust jacket description than in execution.The characters were well written. The plot was good. The writing style was very easy to fall into. This book was also a very quick read. There was just something lacking for me, though. It was missing that extra bit of oomph that would have pushed me from lukewarm to on fire.If you are looking for a decent mystery novel with an unusual plot, definitely check this book out. I wouldn't steer anyone away from this book, but I might not guide them toward it either.more
Load more
scribd