The Secretary by Renee Knight
Publication Date: February 12, 2019
Book Summary: She could be the most dangerous person in the room…
From her first day as Personal Assistant to the celebrated Mina Appleton, Christine Butcher understands what is expected of her. Absolute loyalty. Absolute discretion. For twenty years, Christine has been a most devoted servant, a silent witness to everything in Mina’s life. So quiet, you would hardly know she is there.
Day after day, year after year, Christine has been there, invisible—watching, listening, absorbing all the secrets floating around her. Keeping them safe.
Christine is trusted. But those years of loyalty and discretion come with a high price. And eventually Christine will pay.
But it would be a mistake to underestimate such a steadfast woman as Christine. Because as everyone is about to discover, there’s a dangerous line between obedience and obsession.
Book Review: “We are like spies – the longer we serve, the more secrets we hold, and the greater the need for our discretion.” – THE SECRETARY
I’ve been an executive assistant for eight years now. Being in the administrative field, I’ve mastered patience and a great deal of multi tasking. I pride myself in my work, however some individuals eat, breathe and sleep their jobs. I for one, leave it back in the office, while others such as Christine, revolve their world around it. From the beginning, she presented herself as the ultimate assistant. Her ideal goal in life was to please her demanding boss, Mina. But how many sacrifices can one make for an employer? Is it worth losing it all?
When I first heard about THE SECRETARY, I had a feeling I would resonate with this story, to a certain degree. I didn’t really understand why Christine was such a “yes woman.” Sometimes saying no is a must, but hey to each their own. Moving on, Knight, did a wonderful job in creating a suspenseful setting from the start. I was curious to see how the foreshadowing downfall between Mina and Christine would unravel. The subtle hints throughout the chapters, motivated me to keep reading. Even during moments where the plot lost its speed, I continued on.
And boy am I glad I pushed through, Renee ended it with a bang! I was not expecting it to conclude in that manner. It brought the novel together and I appreciated the whole aspect of work relationships. You never know who might be fake smiling at you.
My Rating: 🌟🌟🌟🌟
Thank you to Harper Books for my review copy!
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About the Author: Renée Knight worked for the BBC directing arts documentaries before turning to writing. She has had TV and film scripts commissioned by the BBC, Channel Four, and Capital Films. In April 2013, she graduated from the Faber Academy “Writing a Novel” course, whose alumni include S. J. Watson. She lives in London with her husband and two children.