Jeff’s phone rang at 6:00 A.M. His bedroom was dark except for a sliver of early morning light peeping around the corners of the window blinds. There was no traffic noise from the street behind his house. His wife of thirty years lay asleep beside him.

  Jeff grabbed the phone and picked up the receiver, hoping the shrill sound didn’t wake his wife.

  “Get the paper now! Read the front page. I think Adam has done something awful!” Madeleine, his sister, screamed at him.

  Adam, their oldest brother, was often in the paper. He was a former senator so Madeleine and Jeff were used to reading articles about their brother.

  Jeff yawned and looked at the clock. He didn’t need to get up for another hour. “What is so bad that you had to call me this early? Couldn’t it wait?”

  “No! When you read the paper, you’ll know why,”
Madeleine told him.

  Taking his cell phone with him, Jeff went downstairs and opened the front door. He grabbed the newspaper off the bottom step. The flimsy plastic bag was damp with the morning dew. “Oh, my God, do you really think he did this?” he said to Madeleine after he read the headline and the first few lines of the article. “Why would you think that? He never believed us. Did something happen?”

  “Yes. He called me yesterday and sounded depressed as usual. He said he changed his mind and hired a private investigator to find her.” Madeleine paused to take a sip of coffee. “He was already so fragile. This may have been the last straw. Maybe he finally cracked.”

Chapter One 


  "I will not marry him," Hannah said as she stamped her foot on the living room floor. "I don't care what you have promised. I will not marry him. How dare you make arrangements for my wedding? To someone I have never met. To someone almost fifty years old and who lives in America. What were you thinking?" she hissed at her parents.

  She now understood why the house had been awash with frantic activity --- drapes pulled down and dusted, rugs taken outside and beaten, and the floor polished to a shine. Mama had yelled at Clarisse, the maid, to make sure the upstairs rooms were swept twice.

  "You'll meet him, and you'll marry him," Hannah's mother said, loudly, which was unlike her. 

  "Your papa and I are tired of answering questions about why you aren't married yet. People think something is wrong with you." She paced the room, moving objects from place to place. "I don't want people to think that you can't get a husband; that you are no longer a virgin. Your sisters and brothers are married --- it's past time for you." She paused, took a deep breath, and announced, "It's arranged, so there's no way to get out of it."

  Hannah still lived with her parents. That was what proper, unmarried women did until they found a husband and raised a family... As far as she was concerned, a husband was not part of the vision she had for her life.
Secrets & Deceptions is a sweeping saga, the rich and emotional story of three generations of women and the men in their lives.

Beginning in Germany just before WWII  and ending in America in the 21st century, the novel recounts tales of success and defeat, love and rejection, life and death, and family in the lives of Hannah, Sophie, and Madeleine. 

This towering modern epic transfixes us with the turbulent emotions of the women and the family touched by war, tragedy, and the devastating secrets of forbidden love... bittersweet and eternal.

"Hard to put down!"                 "Loved it!"                   "A true page turner."
This book takes you on a amazing journey of a woman's life from childhood to old age. Although it begins as Hannah Horowitz's story, it frequently changes perspective.. taking on that of her daughter, son, husband, grandkids, lover.. Through each character's eyes, comes a complete roller coaster of emotions and real-life issues. There was a surprise at every turn, keeping you glued to the book. Like nothing I've ever read. It forces you to see life from a grander view and realize what it's really about. I feel as though I knew this woman, and she made me wise. ~ Susan 

What is so wonderful is the way the author incorporates history into the lives of such rich and passionate characters! The love story aspects are beautiful and tragic. Once you know the characters, you will never be able to stop reading! ~ A Reader

I loved this story! Through the great times and the depression, the family sticks together. This book also tells the heart-wrenching story of her children and their obstacles. In the end, Mother knows best. If you're the relative of a Jewish immigrant - a must read. If you just love love stories - a must read.  ~G. Williams

The wonderful life of a family's three generations, how immigrants have to struggle, family problems, family love, family dysfunction and much more. All the characters are very well created, and the dramas of life are as real as they could get. ~John Talbot


"I was astonished at how little I knew about my own family as I researched my 
ancestry and the eras over which my novel takes place. It was and is a labor of
 love and has involved a great of blood, sweat and tears," Helene admitted. "When
 I began writing, I did not realize that The Holocaust would become a critical part of
 the story. 

During and after WWII, neither the survivors of the holocaust nor the combat solders 
were diagnosed or treated for what is now known as PTSD (Post-traumatic Stress 
Disorder). Many of the characters in this book were victims of this now well-known 

"I have always been drawn to women like Anais Nin and Erica Jong who wrote unabashedly about the sexual mores of their generations. Secrets & Deceptions explores sexuality and the mores of each generation and provides a vehicle for describing the emotional trauma inflicted upon women of those times."

Helene Uhlfelder wrote her first novel when she was eight years old. Until recently, her focus was on nonfiction: work-related books and articles. By completing her first adult novel, she has opened the floodgates and is pouring out one more novel and a children's book. In addition to Nin and Jong, her writing has been influenced by writers such as Rosemary Daniell, Lawrence Durrell, and Gustave Flaubert. Helene has been a teacher, therapist, actor, management consultant, and yarn artist and now author. She was born in West Palm Beach Florida, spent over twenty-five years in Georgia, and now lives in Norfolk Virginia with her incredible husband and golden retriever.