“The forgotten garden” by Kate Morton

The experience of reading is vastly different for an adolescent as opposed to an adult. For one thing an adult is interrupted more. The interruptions may be from spouses or children demanding your attention, or, they might just be your own stresses and worries encroaching on your thoughts…. Whatever, the reading experience of the adolescent is somehow undiluted. When I was a teenager I would read voraciously and completely. I was IN the book for the duration only to emerge when the last page was consumed.

I recently once again had that type of reading experience with Kate Morton‘s “The forgotten garden”. An historical novel with gothic overtones, it is also a family saga which spans a century. Complete with a family secret, a mysterious disappearance, an unexpected inheritance, fairy tales, and a brooding English mansion perched on the cliffs of Cornwall, it was everything I used to love in a novel.

The novel opens with a small girl put on a ship to Australia by a person known to the reader as “the authoress”. This tiny girl makes the vast journey alone, only to be claimed by the harbour master to be brought up as his own child. He names her ‘Nell’. After a happy childhood with this family, she is told her true story by her ‘father’ at her coming-of-age party. This life changing revelation is what spurs her to try to discover who her birth family is and why she ended up where she did. She embarks upon a search for the truth that leads her to the windswept Cornish coast and Blackhurst Manor, once owned by the wealthy Mountrachet family.

On Nell’s death, her grand-daughter, Cassandra, comes into an unexpected inheritance. Cliff Cottage and its forgotten garden. The inheritance leads her to discover secrets about the doomed Mountrachet family and their ward Eliza Makepeace, a writer of dark Victorian fairy tales. Here Cassandra finally uncovers the truth about the family, and solves the century-old mystery of a little girl lost…

Anyone who was ever a fan of Frances Hodgson Burnett’s “The secret garden” (who by the way is mentioned in the novel), Charlotte Brontë’s “Jane Eyre”, or Daphne du Maurier’s “Rebecca” is certain to love the writing of Kate Morton. I am not saying that her writing is literary genius, only that she transports the reader to her world seemingly effortlessly. For anyone who wants their fiction to provide an escape, I highly recommend “The forgotten garden“.

I have not yet read Kate Morton’s other two titles, but I plan to put them near the top of my ‘to read’ list’.
A previous novel “The house at Riverton” garnered much acclaim. Just out now in time for Christmas giving is her new novel “Distant Hours“.

Advertisements

About Fictionophile

Fiction reviewer ; Goodreads librarian. Retired library cataloger - more time to read! Loves books, gardening, and red wine. I have been a reviewer member of NetGalley since October 2013. I review titles offered by Edelweiss, and participate in blog tours with TLC Book Tours.
This entry was posted in book reviews, Favorite books, Fiction and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

4 Responses to “The forgotten garden” by Kate Morton

  1. Pingback: “The Lake House” by Kate Morton | Fictionophile

  2. Gaye says:

    Okay, Lynne, I read “The Forgotten Garden” and found it a long read….I am finished with Kate Morton.

    Like

    • Sorry you feel that way. It is curious that folk either love her or cannot abide her. When Whodunit Book Club read this novel there did not seem to be anyone who was ambivalent. They either LOVED it or disliked it.

      Like

  3. Gaye says:

    Lynne, while I still haven’t read “The Forgotten Garden”, your enthusiasm for this title has me looking forward to starting it soon -very soon, as I need it read for Book Club on the 30th. I have read
    “Riverton House” by this author and I found it “okay”; usually I like my books with more depth. Also, this is Kate Morton’s first book and as we have learned you cannot always judge an author’s work by their first publication. It looks like it will be another great meeting of the Whodunit BC this month.

    Like

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s