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  • Writer's pictureJudith D Collins

My Stepmother's Secret

An incredibly powerful and heartbreaking story about a family dilemma

ISBN: 9781837903269

Publisher: Bookouture

Publication Date: 04/03/2023

Format: e-book

My Rating: 4 Stars (ARC)



It’s in that moment, I realise – I have nowhere to turn. If my precious daughters and I are going to have a roof over our heads, we have to return to my childhood home. The one I’ve not felt welcome in since my father died. The one where the woman who destroyed our family still lives…


Today marks the end of my life as I know it. I have absolutely nowhere to go, no-one to turn to. My husband’s lies have ruined our family and wrecked our marriage. And now he’s disappeared, leaving just a promise to make it all right.


My daughters, Olivia and Alice, need me like never before. I will do whatever it takes to stay strong, to keep them safe and loved. So I turn to the one place I hoped never to return to. When my dad died, he left me his house, with one proviso. His second wife, my stepmother, was to be allowed to live there for as long as she wanted. She hasn’t welcomed me there, or shown a single sign of leaving, since.


But I have no choice. I need to ask for her help.


Little do I know that everything I thought I knew about the woman who destroyed my life when I was a child is about to come crashing down. Living together now, the secrets that have kept us apart for all these years are finally revealing themselves. Will our fragile bond break completely, or could it be the only thing that saves me and my daughters…?


An emotional story about family secrets and lies, and the lengths a parent will go to, to protect their children. Perfect for fans of Jodi Picoult, Jojo Moyes and Kate Hewitt.


Buy the Book





My Review


"An emotional tale of family secrets and the lengths parents will go to protect their children. —Chock-full of warmth, heartache, and hope."


Master storyteller Emma Robinson returns following To Be A Mother with her latest family drama, MY STEPMOTHER'S SECRET.


Gabbie is married to Liam, and they have two daughters, Olivia and Alice. Unfortunately, her hubby has been keeping secrets with a bad gambling problem, even though the girls think he is the fun parent. How will she tell her daughters and where will they live? She has a lot of decisions to make.


Gabbie has nowhere to turn but to her stepmother, Jill. Her mom and dad are gone, and even though they left her the house in the will, Jill can live there as long as she likes.


She does not care for her stepmother, whom her father married after her mother died in a car accident. She blames and resents her for all the turmoil growing up.


Everyone keeps secrets, and no one communicates—thinking they are protecting their children.


Gabbie is keeping all of this from her two daughters. She finally confesses to Jill the problem, but she does not give her money but says she can stay with her. In the meantime, Jill began to open up about the family secrets, where nothing was as it appeared.


Her father had sent her away to boarding school, and there she was bullied by another girl. She appeared to have viewed others and situations incorrectly.


Gabbie finally realizes she must depend on others for help. Highly charged topics from addiction, bullying, infidelity, affairs, family secrets, marriage, relationships, self-awareness, and second chances.


So many people had been hurt by deeply flawed parents. Why had they not told her the truth? Was it right to sacrifice your own happiness for others? What would her life be like if someone had told her the truth?


Gabbie has to make some tough choices, but she has learned from these new truths and is better equipped to handle her own life as a wife and mother to her girls and how she perceives her stepmother Jill in a different light.


This is my second book by the author, and Robinson explores the tough and messy side of families, relationships, and parenting— with a cast of well-developed characters. If you enjoy family sagas, the power of family and friendships, and the ties that bind, you will enjoy MY STEPMOTHER'S SECRET.


For fans of authors: Jodi Picoult, Rochelle Weinstein, and Suzanne Redfearn. Beautiful cover.


Thank you to #Bookouture and #NetGalley for a gifted ARC in exchange for an honest review.



@JudithDCollins | #JDCMustReadBooks

Pub Date: April 3, 2023

My Rating: 4 Stars







About the Author


Emma Robinson is a USA Today Bestseller with a passion for stories which explore the power of family and friendship in the most challenging circumstances. Whilst her early novels are humorous; her recent work focuses on emotional themes and these novels are both heart-breaking and life affirming.​


Emma currently lives in Essex, England with a husband, two children and a small black dog.


Could you ask for help from the woman who destroyed your family?​


​My Stepmother's Secret

Out Monday 3rd April

BUY NOW






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