My Secret Sister : Jenny Lucas and Helen Edwards' Family Story, Paperback Book

My Secret Sister : Jenny Lucas and Helen Edwards' Family Story Paperback

3.5 out of 5 (1 rating)


Helen grew up in a pit village in Tyneside in the post-war years, with her gran, aunties and uncles living nearby.

She felt safe with them, but they could not protect her from her neglectful mother and violent father.

Behind closed doors, she suffered years of abuse. Sometimes she talked to an imaginary sister, the only one who understood her pain.

Jenny was adopted at six weeks and grew up in Newcastle.

An only child, she knew she was loved, and with the support of her parents she went on to become a golfing champion, but still she felt that something was missing...Neither woman knew of the other's existence until, in her fifties, Jenny went looking for her birth family and found her sister Helen.

Together they searched for the truth about Jenny's birth - and uncovered a legacy of secrets that overturned everything Helen thought she knew about her family.

Happily, they also discovered that they were not just sisters, they were twins.

Inspirational and moving, this is the story of two women brave enough to confront their past, and strong enough to let love not bitterness define them.


  • Format: Paperback
  • Pages: 448 pages, Illustrations
  • Publisher: Pan Macmillan
  • Publication Date:
  • Category: Memoirs
  • ISBN: 9781447228875

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This was a fascinating story about two sisters, one who remained with her mother and one who was adopted out. Neither knew of the other's existence for many decades and they had very different upbringings.Unfortunately,I found the first half rather slow and not particularly well written. Other members of my book group also considered the narrative a bit stilted - this happened, than that happened, then something else. It was written by a ghost writer and in my opinion it would have been better written by the protagonists, giving a different feel to each sister's story. It would then have been easier to remember who was narrating. This part was also rather a misery memoir in places.The second half, when the sisters traced each other and the unbelievable web of lies and intrigue began to be unraveled, was much more interesting. I was really impressed by their determination and what they managed to discover. This section lifted a three star read to nearer four stars.What fascinated me about this book was that it was a true story, with a happy ending. A bit slow to begin with but worth persevering.

Also by Jenny Lee Smith