Book Review – Dirty Secret

Posted June 29, 2015 by Kathy in 3 Stars, Book Review / 8 Comments

Book Review – Dirty SecretDirty Secret Series: The Burke Brothers #1
by Emma Hart
Published by Pocket Star on December 1, 2014
Genres: Adult Contemporary Romance
Pages: 276
Format: Ebook
Source: Publisher
Buy on AmazonBarnes & Noble

Conner Burke never expected Sofie Callahan to come back.

Where she’s been for the last two and half years is a mystery, and so is the reason she left in the first place. Now, though, she’s back in their hometown of Shelton Bay, South Carolina, at the same time Conner’s band Dirty B. is home on a tour break.

Sofie Callahan has spent the months since her father’s death avoiding anything to do with her hometown. But with her brother in Afghanistan, she has no choice but to return and sort out her father’s house, even if it means facing the boy she fell in love with and revealing the reason she left.

Conner has questions, and when his broken heart and her guilty one collide, Sofie has to start answering them. Their present is rocky, their future unknown. Only one thing is certain: Sofie’s daughter will change everything.

Purple My Review

Dirty Secret is a smalltown romance that will tug at your heart. This is my first Emma Hart book and I thought this was a nice story but I have mixed feelings about this.

Sofie Callahan returns to her home town of Shelton Bay, South Carolina with a secret. She left two and half years ago breaking the heart of the man she loved, the now famous singer Conner Burke. Sofie left Shelton Bay without telling Conner she was pregnant. During the time away Sofie has lived with the guilt and with the recent death of her father she returns home to take care of loose ends. While home she does plan to tell Conner the truth. But before she is ready he shows up on her doorstep. Filled with guilt and nerves Sofie introduces Conner to his daughter but there are more secrets that need to be revealed. Conner feels anger and hatred to Sofie for keeping him away from his daughter, but they can’t ignore the chemistry that is still between them. Can Conner forgive Sofie? Or is it too late for them to find love and happiness again? You have to read Dirty Secret to find out!

What did I like?

I liked the characters of Dirty Secret. Even though Sofie ran away from Conner a part of me liked her. She was funny and smart mouthed, which came as a defense when dealing with the Burke brothers. I thought her portrayal of a new mom was right – as much as we love our children we lose a part of identity. Sofie’s confession of this was an emotional part of the story for me. With Conner I felt his pain and anger so Sofie deserved the verbal attacks he gave her. But right after we saw the sensitive side to him and his regret for saying things without thinking. And I also loved the supporting cast of the Burke family. They were fun and loving to each other. Normally I don’t like little kids in adult books, since some authors don’t get the right voice for the age of the character. But I thought their daughter Mila was adorable and she added some heartwarming moments to the story.

What didn’t I like?

I didn’t like the pace of the story. I thought it was too slow and the internal dialogue was repetitive. Also there was a part of me that hated Sofie. She felt so guilty about keeping the secret but refused to tell Conner everything. It became frustrating and irritating how long this part of the story dragged. I was rooting for Sofie and Conner so it would have been better if they just dealt with their past so we could have shared more happier moments in the book.

Despite my frustrations with the story I did like Dirty Secret. This is a quick read to add some drama and steamy romance to your day. I enjoyed meeting the Burke brothers so I look forward to reading Tate’s story in the next book, Dirty Past.

I received this book as a member of the XOXperts, XOXO After Dark’s official street team, in exchange for an honest review. Visit for the best in romance, urban fantasy and women’s fiction.

This book meets the COYER Scavenger Hunt #29 (a book with no magical or futuristic elements).

Rating Report
Overall: three-stars


While reading Dirty Secret I came across this cute video of Luke Bryan singing with a young fan. I can imagine Conner doing this with Mila someday. So adorable!

About Emma Hart

By day, New York Times and USA Today bestselling New Adult author Emma Hart dons a cape and calls herself Super Mum to a terrible two year old and growing bump, due September 2013. By night, she drops the cape, pours a glass of juice and writes books.
She likes to write about magic, kisses and whatever else she can fit into the story. Sarcastic, witty characters are a must. As are hot guys. Emma is currently working too many books to even count - including Playing for Keeps, the companion book to the New York Times and USA Today bestselling novel, The Love Game. She likes to be busy - unless busy involves doing the dishes, but that seems to when all the ideas come to life.

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8 responses to “Book Review – Dirty Secret

  1. Alicia

    I love second chance romances plus Conner’s a singer!! I’m going to have to check this out. Nice review!

    • Kathy

      I normally don’t like slow books too but this was cute. Thanks for stopping by Stacey!

    • Kathy

      I was frustrated with Sofie so it was good the supporting characters were fun to read. Thanks Zareena!