The Memory Keeper's Daughter, written by Kim Edwards, was her first novel, and was embraced by critics and readers alike.
It is the story of the lives of a family based upon one lie, motivated out of a kind of love, which creates other lies and family mysteries. Dr. David Henry delivers his wife of a downs-syndrome baby, and in his desire to protect his wife, he tells her—when she awakes—that of the twins she gave birth to, only the boy survived.
David asks his nurse, Caroline, to take the baby to an institution nearby where she can be cared for, but the nurse leaves town with the child; she will raise her as her own daughter.
The secrets are not revealed until David is unable to conceal the existence of the daughter any longer, but in the years since the birth, David becomes very private and isolated by his lie.
When I first read this novel, the writing was so concise and "authentic," and the characters so believable, that it sounded like it could be a biography...BUT it is not.
I think the best description of the novel would be realistic fiction.