Imagine that you’re at work and you receive news that the high school your twin son and daughter attend has been terrorized by a school shooter. You jump in your car, race to the school, only to find chaos. As you make your way through the milling, sobbing people, you see them turn, look at you, and point and whisper. You find your daughter unharmed, but in shock. She’s in an ambulance and your police officer husband is with her. When you ask about your son, your husband cannot find the words. You worry that the worst has happened, and it has, but not in the way that you think.
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Heidi Chiavaroli’s book, The Hidden Side, follows the stories of three women–Natalie, the wife and mother described above, Maelynn, the twin daughter, and Mercy, a young woman living in New York in 1776, sympathetic to the Patriots. The three women are tied together when both Natalie and Maelynn read Mercy’s journal during the most challenging period of their life.
Mercy is a young woman secretly engaged to Nathan Hall. When Nathan meets an unfortunate demise, Mercy is determined to help in the fight for freedom from Britain, no matter the cost. She moves to her aunt’s house and takes up the role of staunch Loyalist, both to appease her aunt who is a Loyalist and to become a spy and help Washington’s army.
What Mercy does not plan on is falling in love with the British Major John André. Yet, she does fall in love with him, all the while, she is sending his confidences to Washington.
Natalie, Maelynn, and Mercy all have secrets that will come to light; I kept compulsively reading on, waiting to see how it would all end.
I give this book 5 out of 5 stars on the Mom’s Plans’ scale.