This young adult paranormal tale is best read after the first in the series so that one has the full background on certain extreme changes in the heroine’s life. There is a wonderful combination of mystery and magic in this tale mixed with a variety of tangled life choices that complicate the actions of many of the individuals in Cassie’s life. There are explanations for certain behaviors but I am not totally convinced that they provide sufficient justifications for apparently irrational decisions. There is again a surprising development at the very end of the story which will definitely whet one’s appetite for the next book in the series. I particularly enjoyed the new twist on the “kiss and frog” relationship which reflects this author’s sly humor that is demonstrated in many of Cassie’s solutions for her problems and I look forward to learning more about the remarkable people who populate the unusual town of Eagle Rock.
"Secrets and Lies" by Christine Amsden is the second book in the ‘Cassie Scot’ series and continues immediately after the momentous events in the first book. Cassie is still reeling from the actions of her parents and the obligations she owes Evan Blackwood even as she struggles to find a way to support herself. An investigation into the disappearance of two girls who have ties to the Scot and Blackwood families forces Cassie to work with Evan despite her misgivings about not belonging to either the magical or the normal world around her. The hostilities between the two families have only escalated due to Cassie’s circumstances and her relationship with Evan is even more tortuous than ever. Unfortunately, Cassie discovers that the secrets surrounding the missing girls are not the only ones she needs to uncover and she may never recover from the shock of her discoveries.
Cassie Scot, still stinging from her parents' betrayal, wants out of the magical world. But it isn't letting her go. Her family is falling apart and despite everything, it looks like she may be the only one who can save them.
To complicate matters, Cassie owes Evan her life, making it difficult for her to deny him anything he really wants. And he wants her. Sparks fly when they team up to find two girls missing from summer camp, but long-buried secrets may ruin their hopes for happiness.