From the author of The Art of Inheriting Secrets comes an emotional new tale of two sisters, an ocean of lies, and a search for the truth.
Her sister has been dead for fifteen years when she sees her on the TV news…
Josie Bianci was killed years ago on a train during a terrorist attack. Gone forever. It’s what her sister, Kit, an ER doctor in Santa Cruz, has always believed. Yet all it takes is a few heart-wrenching seconds to upend Kit’s world. Live coverage of a club fire in Auckland has captured the image of a woman stumbling through the smoke and debris. Her resemblance to Josie is unbelievable. And unmistakable. With it comes a flood of emotions—grief, loss, and anger—that Kit finally has a chance to put to rest: by finding the sister who’s been living a lie.
After arriving in New Zealand, Kit begins her journey with the memories of the past: of days spent on the beach with Josie. Of a lost teenage boy who’d become part of their family. And of a trauma that has haunted Kit and Josie their entire lives.
Now, if two sisters are to reunite, it can only be by unearthing long-buried secrets and facing a devastating truth that has kept them apart far too long. To regain their relationship, they may have to lose everything.
“There’s a reason Barbara O’Neal is one of the most decorated authors in fiction. With her trademark lyrical style, she’s written a page-turner of the first order. From the very first page, I was drawn into the drama and irresistibly teased along as layers of a family’s complicated past were artfully peeled away. Don’t miss this masterfully told story of sisters and secrets, damage and redemption, hope and healing.” —Susan Wiggs, #1 New York Times bestselling author
“More than a mystery, Barbara O’Neal’s When We Believed in Mermaids is a story of childhood—and innocence—lost, and the long-hidden secrets, lies, and betrayals two sisters must face in order to make themselves whole as adults. Plunge in and enjoy the intriguing depths of this passionate, lustrous novel, and you just might find yourself believing in mermaids.” —Juliet Blackwell, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Carousel of Provence, Letters from Paris, and The Paris Key
“In When We Believed in Mermaids, Barbara O’Neal draws us into the story with her crisp prose, well-drawn settings, and compelling characters, in whom we invest our hearts as we experience the full range of human emotion and, ultimately, celebrate their triumph over the past.” —Grace Greene, author of The Memory of Butterflies and The Wildflower House series
“When We Believed in Mermaids is a deftly woven tale of two sisters, separated by tragedy and reunited by fate, discovering that the past isn’t always what it seems. By turns shattering and life affirming, as luminous and mesmerizing as the sea by which it unfolds, this is a book club essential—definitely one for the shelf!” —Kerry Anne King, bestselling author of Whisper Me This