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All Her Little Secrets

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In this fast-paced thriller, Wanda M. Morris crafts a twisty mystery about a black lawyer who gets in over her head after the sudden death of her boss. A debut perfect for fans of Attica Locke, Alyssa Cole, Harlan Coben, and Celeste Ng, with shades of How to Get Away with Murder and John Grisham’s The Firm. Everyone has something to hide... Ellice Littlejohn seemingly ha In this fast-paced thriller, Wanda M. Morris crafts a twisty mystery about a black lawyer who gets in over her head after the sudden death of her boss. A debut perfect for fans of Attica Locke, Alyssa Cole, Harlan Coben, and Celeste Ng, with shades of How to Get Away with Murder and John Grisham’s The Firm. Everyone has something to hide... Ellice Littlejohn seemingly has it all: an Ivy League law degree, a well-paying job as a corporate attorney in midtown Atlanta, great friends, and a “for fun” relationship with a rich, charming executive—her white boss, Michael. But everything changes one cold January morning when Ellice goes to meet Michael… and finds him dead with a gunshot to his head. And then she walks away like nothing has happened. Why? Ellice has been keeping a cache of dark secrets, including a small-town past and a kid brother who’s spent time on the other side of the law. She can’t be thrust into the spotlight—again. But instead of grieving this tragedy, people are gossiping, the police are getting suspicious, and Ellice, the company’s lone black attorney, is promoted to replace Michael. While the opportunity is a dream-come-true, Ellice just can’t shake the feeling that something is off. When she uncovers shady dealings inside the company, Ellice is trapped in an impossible ethical and moral dilemma. Suddenly, Ellice’s past and present lives collide as she launches into a pulse-pounding race to protect the brother she tried to save years ago and stop a conspiracy far more sinister than she could have ever imagined…


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In this fast-paced thriller, Wanda M. Morris crafts a twisty mystery about a black lawyer who gets in over her head after the sudden death of her boss. A debut perfect for fans of Attica Locke, Alyssa Cole, Harlan Coben, and Celeste Ng, with shades of How to Get Away with Murder and John Grisham’s The Firm. Everyone has something to hide... Ellice Littlejohn seemingly ha In this fast-paced thriller, Wanda M. Morris crafts a twisty mystery about a black lawyer who gets in over her head after the sudden death of her boss. A debut perfect for fans of Attica Locke, Alyssa Cole, Harlan Coben, and Celeste Ng, with shades of How to Get Away with Murder and John Grisham’s The Firm. Everyone has something to hide... Ellice Littlejohn seemingly has it all: an Ivy League law degree, a well-paying job as a corporate attorney in midtown Atlanta, great friends, and a “for fun” relationship with a rich, charming executive—her white boss, Michael. But everything changes one cold January morning when Ellice goes to meet Michael… and finds him dead with a gunshot to his head. And then she walks away like nothing has happened. Why? Ellice has been keeping a cache of dark secrets, including a small-town past and a kid brother who’s spent time on the other side of the law. She can’t be thrust into the spotlight—again. But instead of grieving this tragedy, people are gossiping, the police are getting suspicious, and Ellice, the company’s lone black attorney, is promoted to replace Michael. While the opportunity is a dream-come-true, Ellice just can’t shake the feeling that something is off. When she uncovers shady dealings inside the company, Ellice is trapped in an impossible ethical and moral dilemma. Suddenly, Ellice’s past and present lives collide as she launches into a pulse-pounding race to protect the brother she tried to save years ago and stop a conspiracy far more sinister than she could have ever imagined…

30 review for All Her Little Secrets

  1. 4 out of 5

    Nilufer Ozmekik

    Oh my goodness! This is freaking fantastic legal thriller meets mystery/ suspense keeps you on the edge of your seats, shakes you to the core, blows your mind, forces you to cancel everything: husband, job, pets, last episode of Ted Lasso, massage appointment etc. But it’s totally worth to each cancellation, schedule changing, isolation decision. From the beginning till the end, Ellice Littlejohn’s story hooks you up and even if you try so hard you cannot put this book down. It gets under your s Oh my goodness! This is freaking fantastic legal thriller meets mystery/ suspense keeps you on the edge of your seats, shakes you to the core, blows your mind, forces you to cancel everything: husband, job, pets, last episode of Ted Lasso, massage appointment etc. But it’s totally worth to each cancellation, schedule changing, isolation decision. From the beginning till the end, Ellice Littlejohn’s story hooks you up and even if you try so hard you cannot put this book down. It gets under your skin, conquers your mind. When you give short reading breaks for sneaks and booze, you still keep speculating: who is the mastermind behind the entire scheme, who could be trusted, how Ellice will survive as the walls are closing in? You may think Ellice Littlejohn in early forties, an aspiring, successful lawyer has it all: she already reached her life goals including Ivy League degree and well paying job but she’s working so hard for promotion she didn’t get yet as younger and paler skinned colleagues keep climbing the corporate ladders. She’s not married, no child, a boyfriend but he comes with his baggages ( married, with children, and did I mention he’s also her boss) She harbors so many secrets about her childhood and teenage years in Chillicothe, Georgia. Something so tragic happens to change her entire life! Something she wants to bury forever! Something shouldn’t be found out unless she wants to lose everything she cared for! But her usual early morning meeting with her boss/ lover Michael turns into nightmare when she finds him lying in his own blood bath. She couldn’t even call the authorities. She doesn’t want to get involved into investigation so she vanishes from the scene to return back her floor to act like nothing has happened. The very same day,she gets promoted to replace Michael. The firm executives are merciless enough to move on with their lives and as the protests against the company rises up because of their lack of diversity policy at workplace, they are reckless enough to use Ellice as a pawn to prove they can assign a colored person as executive Vice President. Naturally she has second thoughts about the offer coming out of nowhere ( actually it’s coming from hell: she takes over a dead person’s place before his body gets cold) She’s gonna be only person at 20th floor : line Black person is expected to speak behalf of Black folks, expected to represent the success and failure of every Black woman who worked in corporate America. Before she’s thinking over, she gets an email announcing her new position! What? And this is not the only thing makes her feel she’s trapped in her dead boyfriend’s place. At the first board meeting she’s harassed by her new partners’ racist and sexist comments and Nate who gave him the job seems like so confused, repeating each sentence he says. Whats going on behind the closed doors? Why she cannot reach emails of Michael? Why some of the partners reject to give her information about some special cases? And Detective Bradford who is investigating the suicide of Michael informs her the suicide is staged. The murderer may have used Ellice’s missing badge: there are camera records prove her point. As clock ticks, the walls close on her, Ellice realizes she might be scapegoat of the murder of her boss/ boyfriend and dirty schemes the firm’s executives planned. She has to find a way to get out which means she has to confront the ugly secrets of her past Overall: it’s fascinatingly moving, heart throbbing, action packed, smart thriller. Ellice’s traumatic past truly breaks your heart. I’m rounding up my 4.5 stars to 5 corporate, racism, sexism, harassment, abuse, Black women empowerment stars! Special thanks to NetGalley and William Morrow and Custom House for sharing arc copy of one of the most anticipated books of this year in exchange my honest thoughts.

  2. 5 out of 5

    Michael David

    Ellice Littlejohn definitely DOES have some secrets… The first being that she is sleeping with her married boss, Michael. Ellice is a Black corporate attorney in a VERY predominantly white office, and when Michael asks to meet her at the office early one morning to talk about something important, she obliges…only to find him dead with a gunshot wound to the head. Instead of calling the police, shock causes her to walk away and pretend she was never there. Very soon after, Ellice is promoted as Mic Ellice Littlejohn definitely DOES have some secrets… The first being that she is sleeping with her married boss, Michael. Ellice is a Black corporate attorney in a VERY predominantly white office, and when Michael asks to meet her at the office early one morning to talk about something important, she obliges…only to find him dead with a gunshot wound to the head. Instead of calling the police, shock causes her to walk away and pretend she was never there. Very soon after, Ellice is promoted as Michael’s replacement. It feels way too soon, and the timing and reasoning seems a bit suspicious. Soon enough, past and present collide as Ellice uncovers shocking things about the company she works for...things that could kill her and her loved ones if she’s not careful. I’ll be short and sweet because I don’t have too much to say. The writing is fantastic, and this book covers many relevant topics that should NOT be overlooked. The story is entertaining, and I didn’t dislike it. However, Ellice is initially portrayed as strong, sensible, and smart. So it grew to be a bit frustrating reading about her making wrong decision after wrong decision that puts her in mortal danger. I feel like things could’ve been resolved earlier if she seeked help. The “secrets” in the plot aren’t as exciting as I thought they’d be, and I wasn’t a fan of the convoluted climax. So, a bit of a mixed bag for me. Many reviewers seem to have enjoyed this more than I did. I’m glad to have read it, and look forward to reading another book by the author, but this one won’t stick with me for long. 2.5 stars rounded up. Thank you to William Morrow and Scene of the Crime for an ARC via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review. Expected Publication Date: 11/2/21. Review also posted at: https://bonkersforthebooks.wordpress.com

  3. 5 out of 5

    Terrie Robinson

    "All Her Little Secrets" by Wanda M. Morris is a fast paced and suspenseful read/listen! Ellice Littlejohn is an Ivy League educated corporate attorney working for Houghton Transportation Company in Atlanta, GA. She's the only black attorney in the office and she's had a 'personal relationship' with her married white boss, Michael, for several years. Ellice has tons of secrets and she's added one more to the heap. She left Michael's office on the 20th floor after finding him dead of a gunshot to "All Her Little Secrets" by Wanda M. Morris is a fast paced and suspenseful read/listen! Ellice Littlejohn is an Ivy League educated corporate attorney working for Houghton Transportation Company in Atlanta, GA. She's the only black attorney in the office and she's had a 'personal relationship' with her married white boss, Michael, for several years. Ellice has tons of secrets and she's added one more to the heap. She left Michael's office on the 20th floor after finding him dead of a gunshot to the head. Fear causes Ellice to walk away like she was never there and didn't see a thing. Why would Michael take his own life? Ellice is swiftly promoted to replace Michael's executive position. She wonders why she's chosen as his replacement. As questionable actions continue on the 20th floor, Ellice becomes increasingly uncomfortable with her work environment. Who should she trust? Then Police Detective Bradford informs Ellice that Michael's suicide was staged and security cameras show someone using her badge to enter the building the morning of the murder. Now Bradford is asking Ellice too many questions and she doesn't want to answer any of them! Should she be concerned for her safety now, too? I enjoyed the author's writing style and the pace of this story. It moves quickly with little downtime making it feel like a much shorter read/listen than it is. The characters, although not all likable, are well described and all add to the drama and suspense overall. There are socially relevant and workplace issues that highlight this story. Real life situations in current time mixed with harrowing tales of Ellice's past. I love the Southern atmospheric feel of this story that creates added tension from within our American culture. This story is brimming with them! I feel fortunate to have been gifted with both an ARC and early audiobook of this title. I was able to read/listen at the same time or alternate between the two formats for a quicker reading experience. My personal preference was the audiobook. Narrator Susan Dalian has the perfect first person voice for Ellice and her gender voicing, although not always gender distinguishable, does work for this story. Was this story believable? Heck no! And I'm pretty sure I'm not a "Thriller or Suspense Aficionado". I'm a reader/reviewer who enjoys a creative story that hooks me in early, keeps me entertained and leaves me with a satisfying ending. This book delivers all that! I recommend this book to those who enjoy an edgy, fast paced, suspenseful story dripping with socially relevant tension! This is the author's debut novel and I look forward to seeing what she comes up with next! Thank you to William Morrow and Scene of the Crime for an ARC through NetGalley. I am grateful to Book Riot and Harper Audio for an early audiobook via Libro.fm. It has been my pleasure to give my honest and voluntary review of both formats.

  4. 4 out of 5

    Sheyla ✎

    Ellice Littlejohn is a corporate lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia. She arrives early to work to meet with her boss, Michael (who is also her lover) at his office on the 20th floor. When she steps into his office, she finds him dead with a bullet hole on his head. Instead of calling the cops, she retraces her steps and goes to her floor where she pretends to work until someone else finds his body. The rumor mill brings her the news. It seems that Michael has committed suicide. Or has he? Soon after, th Ellice Littlejohn is a corporate lawyer in Atlanta, Georgia. She arrives early to work to meet with her boss, Michael (who is also her lover) at his office on the 20th floor. When she steps into his office, she finds him dead with a bullet hole on his head. Instead of calling the cops, she retraces her steps and goes to her floor where she pretends to work until someone else finds his body. The rumor mill brings her the news. It seems that Michael has committed suicide. Or has he? Soon after, the police are calling his death suspicious and later on, murder. Who murder Michael and why? Ellice doesn't like the cops. She has reasons for it. One of them is that she is hiding her past. No one at work knows about her brother who has been to jail before or knows about what she had to endure when she was a young girl. She prefers it this way. But we all know that secrets don't remain secrets for long. Someone knows about her past and Ellice can only watch as her life begins imploding. Worse, she becomes the prime suspect in Michael's death. How is she going to clear her name? __ I believe this is one of those times when my expectations were too high for the story. For me, it didn't quite deliver. Why didn't it work for me? Well, because of Ellice. She is supposed to be a LAWYER but she behaves like someone who has no clue about the law. She does everything to make herself look guilty, guilty, guilty. I could not see past this. She had so many chances to come clean but she kept on just making the wrong choices over and over again. What worked for me? *Ellice trying to protect her family. *Juice. *Ellice's best friend. She was there for her despite learning about Elice's secrets. Would I read a book by Wanda M. Morris again: Yes! Could I see this book as a movie? Absolutely! Cliffhanger: No 3/5 Fangs A complimentary copy was provided by William Morrow via Netgalley in exchange for an honest review. MrsLeif's Two Fangs About It | Facebook | Twitter | Instagram

  5. 5 out of 5

    JaymeO

    Ellice Littlejohn is a middle-aged Black woman working as a corporate attorney at Houghton Transportation company in Atlanta. One morning, she discovers her boss, Michael Sayles, dead in his office. Ellice is afraid to call the police because she is worried that all of her secrets will come out. She has been working hard all of these years to forget her past and won’t let anything stop her from achieving success. However, when the police suspect that she was involved in the murder, she takes the Ellice Littlejohn is a middle-aged Black woman working as a corporate attorney at Houghton Transportation company in Atlanta. One morning, she discovers her boss, Michael Sayles, dead in his office. Ellice is afraid to call the police because she is worried that all of her secrets will come out. She has been working hard all of these years to forget her past and won’t let anything stop her from achieving success. However, when the police suspect that she was involved in the murder, she takes the investigation into her own hands. To her surprise, she uncovers corporate secrets that threaten to upend her new promotion as an executive and reveal the past she wants to forget. This book is a slow-burn thriller that focuses on themes of racism. It alternates between the past and present, eventually leading up to the big reveal. It took a bit too long for me to get invested in the plot, but the suspense and tension really built up around 45%. Fortunately, the second half of the book had my complete attention. I also found myself enjoying the timeline from the past more than the present day, as I had a difficult time keeping track of all of the corporate executives and their roles within the subplot. The writing is fantastic and I understand the hype around this book. The themes that Morris explores are current hot topics and well executed. However, Ellice is a REALLY foolish amateur sleuth. She leaves evidence on phone messages, talks to the police without a lawyer, and doesn’t call the police when she discovers a dead body. That being said, this is a terrific debut and I would love to read more from this author. A note on the audiobook: It is read by Susan Dalian and she is fabulous. I recently listened to another audiobook that she narrated and fell in love with her voice. It is obvious that she is a professional actor and I would happily listen to more books read by her. 3.5/5 stars rounded up to 4 Thank you to NetGalley and Lainey Mays from HarperCollins publishing for the ARC of All Her Little Secrets in exchange for an honest review.

  6. 5 out of 5

    Ms. Woc Reader

    This book did what I need all thrillers to do! Be thrilling! I was engaged from start to finish. I'm weary about thrillers that mention dealing with racism now because of thrillers that just did it so badly. Wanda M Morris doesn't make the same mistakes as other author by centering the white gaze. Not once in this story did it feel like she was trying to show white readers how hard it is for Black people. Instead she crafted a twisty tale about a woman with a very traumatic and abusive past who This book did what I need all thrillers to do! Be thrilling! I was engaged from start to finish. I'm weary about thrillers that mention dealing with racism now because of thrillers that just did it so badly. Wanda M Morris doesn't make the same mistakes as other author by centering the white gaze. Not once in this story did it feel like she was trying to show white readers how hard it is for Black people. Instead she crafted a twisty tale about a woman with a very traumatic and abusive past who was just doing what she thought she needed to do to stay afloat. Ellice Littlejohn has tried so hard to distance from her rural past in Chillicothe, Georgia. She has no pictures of her family or friends in her office and as far as everyone is concerned she's an only child. No one knows about her alcoholic birth mother or emotionally, physically , and sexually abusive step-father or any of the other secrets she's kept buried. The façade of her perfectly life as a top attorney at Houghton dramatically changes one morning when she goes to meet her boss in his office before work hours. Thinking this is just another one of their early morning trysts she's shocked to see his dead body with a bullet wound in his head. Panicking she flees the scene pretending as if she was never there. The next day she's promoted to the executive position her boss held with the promotion being announced before they officially ask her. She finds the boy's club culture of the executive board unnerving as the only Black woman working at the company especially as protestor's march outside the building chanting about how Houghton won't hire Black people. Even more unnerving is how determined the executive board is to quickly move on from one of their members dying. They don't even attend his funeral and throw a huge social club party the day after. Soon Ellice finds herself being framed for murder and discovers the shady businesses people at her job are participating in but nothing can prepare her for some of the other secrets she's uncovers. Fast-paced, well thought out, and full of twists even at the end All Her Little Secrets never has a dull moment. I received an arc from William Morrow Books in exchange for an honest review.

  7. 4 out of 5

    Brandice

    All Her Little Secrets is the story of Ellice Littlejohn, a successful corporate attorney at a transportation company in Atlanta. Her seemingly good life changes one day when she arrives at work early to meet her boss, Michael, and finds him dead in his office. Ellice is startled but walks away, as she has secrets of her own, including the affair she’s been having with Michael. Ellice is immediately promoted to Michael’s role and has to contend with skeptical coworkers and suspicious police, whi All Her Little Secrets is the story of Ellice Littlejohn, a successful corporate attorney at a transportation company in Atlanta. Her seemingly good life changes one day when she arrives at work early to meet her boss, Michael, and finds him dead in his office. Ellice is startled but walks away, as she has secrets of her own, including the affair she’s been having with Michael. Ellice is immediately promoted to Michael’s role and has to contend with skeptical coworkers and suspicious police, while keeping a handle on her own small-town past and family secrets. As she delves further into work, things aren’t sitting right, and her suspicions about the company’s shady interactions lead to a dangerous path. I enjoyed this story, which I listened to as an audiobook. I stayed interested in finding out what was really happening at the company and how things would play out for Ellice. I didn’t agree with all of her choices but was still rooting for her. The story covers a lot of topics including ethical dilemmas, racial tensions, navigating the old boys club at work, and family relationships. All Her Little Secrets is Wanda Morris’s debut novel and I’d definitely read more from her. Susan Dalian narrated this audiobook and was great.

  8. 4 out of 5

    DeAnn

    3.5 Secretive Stars I enjoyed this one and found it a quick and compelling read. To others, Ellice looks like a high-powered, Ivy-League educated, professional black woman. She’s a corporate attorney for a transportation company. Once you dig deeper though, you discover things are a bit tarnished by her bad choices. She’s still having an affair with her married boss, and she followed him to this job. She’s also reluctant to share any personal details at work because she’s keeping deep secrets fro 3.5 Secretive Stars I enjoyed this one and found it a quick and compelling read. To others, Ellice looks like a high-powered, Ivy-League educated, professional black woman. She’s a corporate attorney for a transportation company. Once you dig deeper though, you discover things are a bit tarnished by her bad choices. She’s still having an affair with her married boss, and she followed him to this job. She’s also reluctant to share any personal details at work because she’s keeping deep secrets from her past. She’s headed to the office early one morning to meet with her boss and discovers that he’s dead in his office. Rather than call the police, she leaves his office and hopes that no one has seen her. You just know this won’t end well for her! As the police begin to investigate, things heat up for Ellice and her secrets from the past threaten her current life. What exactly is going on at the company? When Ellice is quickly promoted at work, the police get even more suspicious. Can she keep her secrets under wraps? I enjoyed the writing in this one although her character made me a bit crazy! I look forward to future books by this debut author! Thank you to William Morrow/Custom House and NetGalley for the copy of this one to read and review.

  9. 4 out of 5

    Liz

    Well, all it took was a comparison to Attica Locke for me to be drawn to this debut mystery. Morris takes a standard formula, a woman suspected of killing her married lover, and makes it seem fresh. Elyce Littlejohn is a middle aged, hard working, black attorney. She comes to work one morning to find her lover’s dead body in his office. In a panic, she leaves the crime scene without reporting it. On the same day as his murder, the firm offers her his position. She knows she’s being tapped for he Well, all it took was a comparison to Attica Locke for me to be drawn to this debut mystery. Morris takes a standard formula, a woman suspected of killing her married lover, and makes it seem fresh. Elyce Littlejohn is a middle aged, hard working, black attorney. She comes to work one morning to find her lover’s dead body in his office. In a panic, she leaves the crime scene without reporting it. On the same day as his murder, the firm offers her his position. She knows she’s being tapped for her skin color as much as her ability, as the company is dealing with protests over their lack of diversity. And, to make things worse, before she can even accept the offer, they post that she’s taken the position. Ellice has hidden her background since she came to Atlanta. Thus, the secrets in the title (not to mention the secret of her affair). I found her an interesting character. As an older woman who was often the only woman in the upper management room, I had a bit of an inkling what Ellice was dealing with. But I, at least, was white. But at the same time, Ellice seemed to lack some basic common sense. I tried not to play armchair quarterback, assuming I would have reacted differently in the same circumstances. But some of the decisions she made beggared belief, especially her willingness to hide certain information from the authorities. The author is a corporate lawyer and it shows in her explanation of certain legal requirements. Morris does tell a ripping good tale. It moves quickly and there’s a nice sense of tension throughout. I thought the ending worked really well. I was very impressed with Susan Dalian as the narrator.

  10. 4 out of 5

    Faith

    Ellice is an in-house attorney who discovers the dead body of her boss/lover and walks away, fearing that his violent death would somehow lead to the exposure of her childhood secrets. Actually, that was a pretty lousy motive for her behavior, but that was just one example of how this convoluted thriller didn’t really hang together. The parts of the book that dealt with her childhood, during which Ellice and her younger brother had to cope with a drunken mother and abuse, felt much more real. I Ellice is an in-house attorney who discovers the dead body of her boss/lover and walks away, fearing that his violent death would somehow lead to the exposure of her childhood secrets. Actually, that was a pretty lousy motive for her behavior, but that was just one example of how this convoluted thriller didn’t really hang together. The parts of the book that dealt with her childhood, during which Ellice and her younger brother had to cope with a drunken mother and abuse, felt much more real. I wish that the author had written that family story, or a more realistic picture of a black, female attorney in a sea of white men, rather than cramming it together with a crime plot. I know that thrillers sell, but I think the author’s strengths might lie elsewhere.

  11. 4 out of 5

    Elle

    I have approximately 26210362;8725 thrillers on my TBR but I am still adding this one cause HELLO

  12. 5 out of 5

    Anna Avian

    My expectations for an interesting and well-crafted thriller died on the vine. To begin with, this book is everything but fast-paced as stated in the summary. While the main character is a lawyer, we see very little action related to her profession. If some more details of her job were thrown in it would have contributed for a much believable and fully fleshed out character. Also, for someone being portrayed as strong, smart and rational Elise sure did make a lot of stupid mistakes. The secrets I My expectations for an interesting and well-crafted thriller died on the vine. To begin with, this book is everything but fast-paced as stated in the summary. While the main character is a lawyer, we see very little action related to her profession. If some more details of her job were thrown in it would have contributed for a much believable and fully fleshed out character. Also, for someone being portrayed as strong, smart and rational Elise sure did make a lot of stupid mistakes. The secrets I was so desperately waiting for ended up being anything but exciting and the climax could have been easily missed.

  13. 4 out of 5

    Hannah McKinnon

    Chock-full of deeply buried secrets that slowly claw their way to the surface, a beyond toxic work environment that’ll make you break out in hives, and a gutsy, marvellous heroine you’ll be rooting for right from the start, ALL HER LITTLE SECRETS by Wanda Morris is a terrific, timely legal thriller you won’t be able to put down. I devoured this story faster than a plate of chicken and dumplings and the deeply satisfying conclusion made me cheer out loud!

  14. 5 out of 5

    Mandy White (mandylovestoread)

    So glad I ordered this from the US. Absolutely loved it. Plenty of twists and characters you will love to hate. Highly recommend if you want a quick, addictive read

  15. 5 out of 5

    Darla

    Ellice Littlejohn has too many secrets. When her married boyfriend dies on the top floor of her Atlanta company, the life she has built in the legal department of an Atlanta trucking company begins to crumble. She soon realizes that her secrets are being used by people who do not wish her well. Told in past and present story lines, this does have some excellent legal thriller moments. There were also a few times when I questioned whether Ellice really had a law degree? For the most part I found Ellice Littlejohn has too many secrets. When her married boyfriend dies on the top floor of her Atlanta company, the life she has built in the legal department of an Atlanta trucking company begins to crumble. She soon realizes that her secrets are being used by people who do not wish her well. Told in past and present story lines, this does have some excellent legal thriller moments. There were also a few times when I questioned whether Ellice really had a law degree? For the most part I found it engaging. I would have enjoyed it more without the addition of a few poison pills. In this book white conservative Christians are automatically white supremacists, a woman "saves the children" by aborting them with a knitting needle, and a gun store is evidence of a violent society. Not a book I can recommend. Thank you to William Morrow and Edelweiss+ for a DRC in exchange for an honest review.

  16. 5 out of 5

    Michelle

    4.5 I was fortunate to read some good books in October and I finished the month with this fantastic debut. Ellice Littlejohn is set to have an early morning meeting with her boss and when she walks into his office she finds him dead. How’s that for an opening? The reader follows Ellice as she slowly uncovers a whole heck of a lot of illegal activity going on at her firm and the people involved are way at the top. Ellice wants to expose what she finds, but bit by bit we learn why that isn’t possib 4.5 I was fortunate to read some good books in October and I finished the month with this fantastic debut. Ellice Littlejohn is set to have an early morning meeting with her boss and when she walks into his office she finds him dead. How’s that for an opening? The reader follows Ellice as she slowly uncovers a whole heck of a lot of illegal activity going on at her firm and the people involved are way at the top. Ellice wants to expose what she finds, but bit by bit we learn why that isn’t possible for Ellice. She has a lot of skeletons in her closet she wants to keep hidden and for good reason. So what happens? You’ll just have to read to find out!!! I was on the edge of my seat the entire time I read this book. I loved how the author paced the novel as well as how she gave the readers a peek into Ellice’s backstory. There were some very intense moments, but everything was written masterfully with respect to whatever the topic was. There is also no question that anything pertaining to the law or being a lawyer is coming from an expert since the author is a well respected and experienced attorney. Being a political junkie, I really enjoyed the contemporary setting, with plot lines that could be pulled from the news, but this was written with mainstream appeal for sure. There is something in this book for everyone and I for one cannot WAIT until her next book comes out if it’s anything like this one!! I did have one little issue that bothered me so that is the issue for the slight downgrade, but it was something I could let go based on the strength of the rest of the novel. Others may not be able to do this, but luckily I could. Review Date: 11/01/2021 Publication Date: 11/02/2021

  17. 5 out of 5

    Kellye

    I've been excited to get my hands on this book since I first heard about it and I'm happy to say that it exceeded by expectations. Ellice Littlejohn would be right at home in a John Grisham novel. It has all the ingredients that make his books ones you can't put down -- mysterious corporation, complex main characters, and a story that takes you in unexpected places -- with the added bonus of seeing it through the unique eyes of a smart, capable and often underestimated black woman. I've been excited to get my hands on this book since I first heard about it and I'm happy to say that it exceeded by expectations. Ellice Littlejohn would be right at home in a John Grisham novel. It has all the ingredients that make his books ones you can't put down -- mysterious corporation, complex main characters, and a story that takes you in unexpected places -- with the added bonus of seeing it through the unique eyes of a smart, capable and often underestimated black woman.

  18. 5 out of 5

    Robin Claire

    This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here. First, thank you to Harper Collins Publishers for the Advanced Reader's Copy of All Her Little Secrets. My decision to give the book two stars instead of a lower rating, is that I think this writer has potential and my time wasn't completely wasted. Listed below are some of the issues I had with the book. #1 The main character, Ellice Littlejohn, is 14-years-old in 1979. The book jumps to (what seems to be) the present of 2021, yet her character seems to be closer to a woman of 48 rather than 56. First, thank you to Harper Collins Publishers for the Advanced Reader's Copy of All Her Little Secrets. My decision to give the book two stars instead of a lower rating, is that I think this writer has potential and my time wasn't completely wasted. Listed below are some of the issues I had with the book. #1 The main character, Ellice Littlejohn, is 14-years-old in 1979. The book jumps to (what seems to be) the present of 2021, yet her character seems to be closer to a woman of 48 rather than 56. Stick to the age determined in the beginning of the book. If an author gives an age to a character, stick with the age - including the way she acts. #2 I get that Ellice, her family and friends are African American but they just don't ring true. A few comments, and racist remarks are thrown into the mix, but for the most part the people could be White. To be fair, we see racism in the beginning of the book, events that could have happened during the time period. But, for the main part, the mannerisms of the people just seem false. (One of my favorite authors is Terry McMillan - her characters ring truer to me.) #3 The mistakes that Ellice makes are much too amateur for a person with her educational and business background. Her life and legal experience should have done so much more to support her decisions. Ellice should have been more savvy, and I would have thought that given her background, she would have been more suspicious of anyone including her lover. #4 For someone with Ellice's background, she should have stayed away from Michael. In one point we find out that she and Michael left their previous employment due to their personal relationship. The new company did a lot of research, so it doesn't make sense that they would hire these two people. It doesn't make sense that Ellice would make such a dumb mistake staying with Michael. And, her behavior just doesn't make sense for someone in her mid-fifties. Her love affair with Michael reflects a woman in her mid-to-late forties. #5 I would have liked to have known Michael before he died, I would have liked Ellice to have at least one day showing the reader what she does for her job. Most of the book, Ellice was out and about taking care of her own problems. If a few details of her job were thrown in, it would be a better connection. The trip to Savannah for the meeting at the club was over-the-top. #6 Also unbelievable; two professional women, probably dressed in expensive clothing, are two customers harassed because of the color of their skin. I think a store such as the one they walked into would pick up quickly on a good customer (I hated the race card in this scene. Too in-your-face and calculated.) In this day of Oprah, Beyonce, Halle Berry, and other women of color who are successful and wealthy, this one side story is thrown in as window dressing - a lazy technique to establish a racist attitude. #7 Here are additional grievances with the book: The way Ellice abandoned her brother made no sense - knowing their story, she would have been more protective of him. The nursing home was not believable as Vee had so many friends who would have taken care of her; the story of Juice left to the end of the story, again, either the author waited to throw in all the good parts at the end or thought that a relationship with the man would be best left at the end. Juice had a story, why not share it earlier? And, Juice introducing Sammy to bad guys (even though he didn't know it) doesn't make sense. The ex-con selling guns in a legit gun store doesn't ring true. I think there is a law against this in every one of the United States. Maybe I missed something, and this store wasn't legit? #8 I thought the author took an easy way out for this story; she threw in the racist card when really all we needed was the corruption. The racist angle was just a lazy way to get the reader's attention. The real story was the corruption and how far it went. #9 The thing I thought was the most disappointing, is that the author left all the good details, all the good people, the crux of the story, all left until the end of the book. The book had potential to be really good if only the details were balanced throughout the story. Again, my two stars is only for potential. I am not sure if I would read anything by this author in future, but I would ask her if she hasn't already read books by Terry McMillan, to invest in reading some of her books.

  19. 4 out of 5

    MicheleReader

    Ellice Littlejohn is a 50-something, Yale-educated corporate attorney working for Atlanta-based Houghton Transportation Company. Despite the company being criticized for its mostly white male hiring practices, Ellice, a Black woman, appears to be on a path for success. When she discovers her boss Michael Sayles in his office one early morning dead of an apparent suicide, she flees the scene. She wants to insure that her years-long affair with her mentor isn’t discovered and she wants to keep any Ellice Littlejohn is a 50-something, Yale-educated corporate attorney working for Atlanta-based Houghton Transportation Company. Despite the company being criticized for its mostly white male hiring practices, Ellice, a Black woman, appears to be on a path for success. When she discovers her boss Michael Sayles in his office one early morning dead of an apparent suicide, she flees the scene. She wants to insure that her years-long affair with her mentor isn’t discovered and she wants to keep any knowledge of her past a secret. Once Ellice is quickly promoted to general counsel, her life turns upside down. She soon starts to discover the secrets being held by her company, which may have contributed to Michael’s death. In flashbacks, Ellice’s difficult childhood in rural Georgia is revealed and the tragic events she is hiding from everyone come to light. Author Wanda M. Morris has created a tense mystery thriller in a corporate setting that is plagued by racism and sexual discrimination. It takes toxic workplace to a whole new level. All Her Little Secrets is a fast-paced, highly entertaining book that I couldn’t put down. Many thanks to HarperCollins | William Morrow | Custom House, Scene of the Crime and NetGalley for the opportunity to read this impressive debut in advance of its November 2, 2021 publication. Rated 4.25 stars. Review posted on MicheleReader.com.

  20. 5 out of 5

    Sandy

    What exactly was going on? She left him lying there, as she hurried down to the proper floor where her own workspace was waiting for her. There was so much blood, she knew that Michael was dead. Ellice had to pretend like nothing had happened. They’d been meeting up for a while and no one knew of their relationship. Michael paid her well and they both were happy. They were both lawyers, except Ellice was the only black lawyer in the firm and Michael was married. Ellice was good at pretending tha What exactly was going on? She left him lying there, as she hurried down to the proper floor where her own workspace was waiting for her. There was so much blood, she knew that Michael was dead. Ellice had to pretend like nothing had happened. They’d been meeting up for a while and no one knew of their relationship. Michael paid her well and they both were happy. They were both lawyers, except Ellice was the only black lawyer in the firm and Michael was married. Ellice was good at pretending that she knew nothing about what happened that morning. As the police and emergency personal arrive at the office building, Ellice tries to stay calm yet inside she’s a nervous wreck. When invited into the CEO office, she feels her days are over and yet, she can’t believe her ears when they offer her Michael’s job. What?! Instantly, I think this is a set-up. I’m cautious of everyone, why would they do that and who would do it? Then, Ellice hears that it’s a racially motivated move to place her in Michael’s position, which makes sense since there’s some tension on their doorstep. Yet, this doesn’t make sense to me and why kill him? I liked how Ellice didn’t accept what individual were telling her and she downed her private detective tools and she started her own investigation. She actually made a great detective as she explored every lead and she pursued every little trail she found. I found that in the middle of the book, it got a bit slow for a while but then, it picked back up in speed and the book’s conclusion was brilliant. In the end, what she uncovered was some twisted account with a lot of different pieces attached to it. It was quite the discovery. This book was an entertaining mystery that I enjoyed. 4.5 stars I received a copy of this book from NetGalley and Scene of the Crime Facebook website.

  21. 4 out of 5

    Kelly

    I don’t regret reading this book, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I expected to. Mainly because one of my biggest pet peeves in any story is when a character, of well above average intelligence, Ivy League educated, makes continuous bad decisions to the point of coming across as dumb and naive. I get that we are human and make mistakes, but this seemed like overkill in repeated poor choices which is a tough sell for me. If you are writing about a “strong” character, they shouldn’t seem so wishy I don’t regret reading this book, but I didn’t enjoy it as much as I expected to. Mainly because one of my biggest pet peeves in any story is when a character, of well above average intelligence, Ivy League educated, makes continuous bad decisions to the point of coming across as dumb and naive. I get that we are human and make mistakes, but this seemed like overkill in repeated poor choices which is a tough sell for me. If you are writing about a “strong” character, they shouldn’t seem so wishy-washy and passive.

  22. 4 out of 5

    Tara

    Talk about toxic work environments—the employees of Houghton Transportation in Wanda Morris’ debut novel definitely have their very own special circle of hell waiting for them. A legal thriller with a heart, this novel had me turning pages late at night. It’s a fast-paced journey into the haunting secrets we keep and the lengths we’ll go to protect our family—even at the expense of ourselves.

  23. 5 out of 5

    ABookwormWithWine

    4.5/5 Woo-eee!! I remember hearing a bit about All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris but definitely not enough considering how much this debut novel blew me away. It started off a tiny bit slow at the beginning for me, but then it quickly picked up steam and ended up being quite fast paced after that. I loved Ellice's character and that the story alternated between her past and the present until we find out some huge details about her life and just what secrets she is keeping. This book was c 4.5/5 Woo-eee!! I remember hearing a bit about All Her Little Secrets by Wanda M. Morris but definitely not enough considering how much this debut novel blew me away. It started off a tiny bit slow at the beginning for me, but then it quickly picked up steam and ended up being quite fast paced after that. I loved Ellice's character and that the story alternated between her past and the present until we find out some huge details about her life and just what secrets she is keeping. This book was completely heartbreaking at times and hard to read, but it was definitely worth it and the mystery? Out of this world, didn't expect a single thing, mind-blowing. It was so hard for me to put this down and when I had to, I wished I didn't. If I could have, I would have stayed up all night to finish especially once I got to some very pulse-pounding moments. The audiobook for All Her Little Secrets is totally brilliant as well and narrated by Susan Dalian. Dalian is clearly very skilled at voice acting, and you couldn't ask for anyone better to be the voice of Ellice. There is a lot of heart and soul put into her narration, and it made me enjoy the book even more. There are quite a few parts that made me wince and there is so much that made me think as well. Morris goes in deep with some of the topics she brings up, and this would make a really great book for a book club due to all the conversation I know it will inspire. It is an excellent suspenseful thriller with a nice legal aspect, but it is so much more than that and I know a lot of people will appreciate it. I couldn't believe it was a debut and I can't wait to see what Morris will write next! I received a complimentary copy of this book. Opinions expressed in this review are completely my own.

  24. 5 out of 5

    Jessica Woodbury

    There is a lot to like here. Morris clearly understands the structure and pacing of how to build an effective legal thriller. She's great at introducing us to the characters, ramping up the stakes, and slowly revealing more and more of Ellice's backstory. Ellice's character arc here is more solid than you'll find in most thrillers. We get to understand how she's made all the choices to take her to where she is now and we get to see how she hasn't fully processed the way her choices are harmful t There is a lot to like here. Morris clearly understands the structure and pacing of how to build an effective legal thriller. She's great at introducing us to the characters, ramping up the stakes, and slowly revealing more and more of Ellice's backstory. Ellice's character arc here is more solid than you'll find in most thrillers. We get to understand how she's made all the choices to take her to where she is now and we get to see how she hasn't fully processed the way her choices are harmful to her. What I didn't like so much was a lot of the steps along the way. Legal thrillers are a tough tightrope walk, especially when you have a lawyer protagonist. Dozens of times I thought, "This is the point where Ellice would go get herself a lawyer." And she never did. She always came up with a reason not to, but they were never good reasons that I actually believed. I know that in a Thriller with lots of Twists you have to make the plot go, but I have to believe that there was a way to do this without Ellice being the most oblivious lawyer who has ever existed. I really struggled to understand how a lawyer who is also a Black woman and who doesn't trust law enforcement with good reason would repeatedly submit herself to questioning by police when she didn't have to do so. And there are lots of times when she sees the police as the answer, another thing I didn't think Ellice would really believe. Everything else about this book was really strong, but this one thing frustrated me constantly. Definitely want to see more from Morris. I think most thriller readers will enjoy this a lot. There is a little bit of Racism 101 here, Morris clearly knows that a lot of thriller readers are older white people and she lays out the big stuff as well as the more nuanced issues--like tokenism and the way Black people are often elevated in a system just to be brought down by a job that is impossible to fulfill--to make sure readers understand her point. I read the audiobook and it was solidly performed. I always like it when a crime novel works well on audio, and this one definitely does. Content warnings mostly around child molestation and neglect, not in great detail on the page but a big part of the plot.

  25. 5 out of 5

    Mallory

    I found this book gripping and hard to put down. I liked the main character Ellice a lot. She was far from perfect, but no one is. And while she made mistakes like lying to the police the chapters that were set in her childhood explained that to me. I definitely caught some Get Out vibes and really thought the layers of the mystery were cleverly put together and made a great story. A great debut and I hope to read more. Ellice is a corporate attorney but she has a lot of secrets. The first is th I found this book gripping and hard to put down. I liked the main character Ellice a lot. She was far from perfect, but no one is. And while she made mistakes like lying to the police the chapters that were set in her childhood explained that to me. I definitely caught some Get Out vibes and really thought the layers of the mystery were cleverly put together and made a great story. A great debut and I hope to read more. Ellice is a corporate attorney but she has a lot of secrets. The first is that she’s been sleeping with her boss since they worked together at their previous company. She knows it’s not her best choice and is contemplating what she needs to do when she walks into an early morning meeting with him to find him dead. She leaves quickly and pretends she never saw him. She is immediately promoted to his position and she figures out quickly she’s not the only one with secrets. Her search for the company’s secrets has an unknown timer on it and it kept me on the edge of my seat.

  26. 5 out of 5

    Janie

    A terrific , timely thriller that is hard to put down. The story was powerful and discussed race, the legal system, and the crushing pressure of keeping secrets. Ellice Littlejohn has an Ivy League law degree and a well- paying job in Atlanta. One morning she finds her boss dead with a gunshot to his head. She walks away since she has some past dark secrets. Twists, Depth and Vibrant! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️

  27. 4 out of 5

    Debbie

    I was so surprised this was a debut. It was captivating and fast paced and found it hard to put down. A legal mystery of sorts is always a favourite for me and this one really drew me in. Fabulous!

  28. 5 out of 5

    Tia

    Quick unedited thoughts 4.25 This is a must read! A book not to be missed. Put it on your wish list, pre-order and tbr . You will not be disappointed. I'm barely alert. My eyelids are closing on me as I type. I had 10% left and I couldn't put the book down. I had to know what this was all about and the players in this charade. Won't give anything away. However, I will tell you that this book is not what it appears to be. It is deep and far reaching. Once I realized what was occurring, I still neede Quick unedited thoughts 4.25 This is a must read! A book not to be missed. Put it on your wish list, pre-order and tbr . You will not be disappointed. I'm barely alert. My eyelids are closing on me as I type. I had 10% left and I couldn't put the book down. I had to know what this was all about and the players in this charade. Won't give anything away. However, I will tell you that this book is not what it appears to be. It is deep and far reaching. Once I realized what was occurring, I still needed all the pieces and players. I received an advanced reader copy from WilliamMorrow and Custom House via Netgalley

  29. 4 out of 5

    Dawn

    Pretty good! Some of the dialogue was cheesy, and the plot was pretty simple to dissect, but I was entertained. I loved the contrast between the protagonist’s upbringing and her upbringing of sorts at work (learning you work for violent racists will force anyone to become an enhanced version of themselves). All in all, it was a quick and exciting read - 4 stars!

  30. 4 out of 5

    Nicole

    I listened to this audiobook and thought the narrator was on point. She did a great job telling the story. Ellice Littletonjohn has a pretty incredible life. As a confident black woman, she has a prestigious law degree from an Ivy League school, amazing friends, a high paying, job as a corporate attorney in a predominantly white office, and a no strings attached relationship with her white boss, Michael. Her perfect life comes crumbling down when she finds her lover and boss Michael dead of an app I listened to this audiobook and thought the narrator was on point. She did a great job telling the story. Ellice Littletonjohn has a pretty incredible life. As a confident black woman, she has a prestigious law degree from an Ivy League school, amazing friends, a high paying, job as a corporate attorney in a predominantly white office, and a no strings attached relationship with her white boss, Michael. Her perfect life comes crumbling down when she finds her lover and boss Michael dead of an apparent gunshot wound to the head. She quickly makes herself scarce because Ellice is hiding way more than just the affair with her boss. The rumors start flying as people start gossiping about what happened and why especially when Ellice is chosen to replace her boss Michael. Ellice quickly realizes something fishy is going on in the company. The action picks up from there, as the deep, dark secrets are revealed

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