• J. M. White

Blackberry Mint Cocktail (The Secrets She Keeps)

I read a lot of domestic thrillers. Why? Being a horror fan, there is something deeply unsettling and scary about domestic thrillers. They dive into topics that people don’t want to think about: affairs, secrets, murder, fetishes. Everyone likes to think they know their significant other or best friend, but what if you never really knew them. What if you had been sharing your bed and most intimate thoughts with a total stranger. Come on, that's some scary sh*t!

On that note, Michael Robotham’s The Secrets She Keeps is a binge-read-worthy domestic thriller. This is a terrifying book! It’s not the type of terrifying that most people are probably imagining. There is no gore, spiders, deranged serial killers wearing hockey masks, or monsters hidden beneath beds. This type of terrifying is depicted through lies and emotional pain. Each plot twist is more chilling than the last.


Robotham tells this story through two alternating character POV's. As with any book, there is backstory, but it is placed sporadically throughout the narrative, providing just enough detail about each character without straying from the main plot. A few chapters in, and I was completely taken with these two women, eager to learn more of their very imperfect lives.


What's the Plot?

Agatha is pregnant and works part-time stocking shelves at a grocery store, counting the days until her due date. One day, she meets Meghan whose seemingly perfect life dazzles her. Meghan has two children, a handsome husband, a happy marriage, and an elegant group of friends. She has a popular parenting blog that Agatha reads each night while waiting for her boyfriend, the father of her baby, to return her calls.

When Agatha learns that Meghan is pregnant again, and their due dates are in the same month, she finally musters up the courage to speak to her. Little does either of them know, the exchange will change their lives forever.


Scary or Nay?

From my rantings above, I think you can guess my stance on this.

Whatcha Drinkin'? For this dark domestic thriller, we need a beverage that matches. Muddling blackberries turns this drink a beautiful deep purple while the mint and lemon keep it light and refreshing. I’d recommend slurping this baby up with a straw that way you won’t get mint leaves in your mouth with each sip. This drink should only take five minutes (if that) to prepare. So, bang this out, grab yourself a seat in the sun, and crack open this book.


BLACKBERRY MINT COCKTAIL

Yield: 1 serving

Total time: 5 minutes


What You Need:

  • 6 blackberries

  • 1 tbsp. fresh-squeezed lemon juice (about ½ a lemon)

  • ¼ tsp. sugar

  • 1 sprig mint, plus more for garnish

  • 2 oz. vodka (a traditional shot glass is 1.5 oz.)

  • Seltzer water

What You Do:

  1. In a drinking glass, combine the blackberries, lemon juice, sugar, mint, and vodka.

  2. Gently muddle with the handle of a wooden spoon, crushing most of the blackberries.

  3. Add ice and top with seltzer water. Garnish if desired.

  4. Give a final stir and enjoy.


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Horror Enthusiast

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© 2018 by Jeanette White.