The Secret Keeper by Kate Morton Summary Study Guide

Detailed plot synopsis reviews of The Secret Keeper

Plot Summary Part 3

And Vivien starts to fall in love with Jimmy, even though she is married to Henry Jenkins.

When Vivien learns of Jimmy's connection to Dolly, Vivien reveals that not only did she not say bad things about Dolly to Lady G. when she was alive, but that Vivien actually came over once to apologize to Dolly for treating her badly (but Dolly hadn't been home that day). Rather than being a rich bitch, Vivien is actually quite a nice lady.

In fact, when Vivien learns that Jimmy and Dolly planned to blackmail her, Vivien actually volunteers to give Jimmy 10,000 pounds, even though there is no blackmail involved. Vivien feels sorry for them. She's really that nice.

By the way, no one in real life is that nice. No normal person gives 10,000 pounds to people trying to blackmail them. This is only one of many unrealistic plot twists in this highly improbable story.

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Dolly is happy to get the money through Jimmy but then something unexpected happens. Dolly has taken a photo of Jimmy and Vivien and put together a blackmail letter.

However, Dolly does not send the letter.

However, a bomb is dropped (remember I said this was WW II, and they were in London, and German planes were dropping bombs?), and the letter falls on top of a pile of rubble.

Someone finds the letter and delivers it to Vivien's home.

Henry, her husband, sees it first, and thinks Vivien is having an affair. How likely is any of this to have happened? The story feels very contrived at this point.

Henry, thinking Vivien has been sleeping around, beats Vivien to a pulp and then arranges to have Jimmy drowned in the river.

Vivien runs to warn Dolly to get out of town because she's next.

At this point we think the mystery is solved. When Henry showed up at Dolly's house, many years later, Dolly thought he was there to kill her and so killed him first. Right? Kind of.

It turns out that there was a bomb attack during the time when Vivien warned Dolly to get out of town. The bomb attack killed Dolly. Vivien put her wedding ring on Dolly's finger and switched identities. Vivien, in effect, became Dolly. Laurel is actually not the daughter of Dolly, but the daughter of Vivien, who has become Dolly.

When Henry Jenkins stopped by, many years later, it was to get revenge on his wife, Vivien, who ran away from him. That's why she killed him. So Vivien is Dolly and Vivien/Dolly killed Henry. Are you following?

Now, you may ask yourself, how could Vivien hope to convince Henry she was dead simply by putting her wedding ring on Dolly's dead finger? It makes absolutely no sense. And since Henry surely knew Vivien was alive, the most obvious thing for him to have done was to followup on Dolly's whereabouts... where he would have found Vivien. Which only took him 30 years or so to do.

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