20.7.09

The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton


I read Kate Morton's other book The House at Riverton last year and whilst I enjoyed it, I didn't love it so I was a bit anxious about reading her new book The Forgotten Garden. However, I shouldn't have worried as I thought that it was brilliant, it is definitely in my top five favourite reads of the year so far!
I'm sorry to be lazy and give you the blurb again but it would be too easy to give away the little twists and turns in this book and they are undeniably the best bits!
1913- On the eve of the First World War a little girl is found abandoned after a gruelling ocean voyage from England to Australia. All she can remember of the journey is that a mysterious woman she calls the Authoress had promised to look after her. But the Authoress has vanished without a trace.
1975- Now an old lady, Nell travels to England to discover the truth about her parentage. Her quest leads her to Cornwall, and to a beautiful estate called Blackhurst Manor, which had been owned by the Mountrachet family. What has prompted Nell's journey after all these years?
2005- On Nell's death her grandaughter, Cassandra, comes into a surprise inheritance. Cliff Cottage, in the grounds of Blackhurst Manor, is notorious amongst the locals for the secrets it holds- secrets about the doomed Mountrachet family. But it is at Cliff Cottage, abandoned for years, and in its forgotten garden, that Cassandra will uncover the truth about the family and why the young Nell was abandoned all those decades before.


So as you can see there are three strands to the story, all with their own discoveries and secrets. Kate Morton weaves the three strands together brilliantly, we learn more about Nell's past but we are constantly given new questions and mysteries to solve and this is what keeps you turning the pages. Gardens are key to the story in this and Kate Morton's last book. The Forgotten Garden at Blackhurst Manor holds the answers that Cassandra is looking for, she just needs to know where to look exactly. I think a garden is a really intersting symbol, they promote new life and new beginings but if left uncared for then they become overgrown and therefore cover up the past and any secrets held within.
I really enoyed all the characters that Morton created, you feel that none of them are meerly filling space, they all have something important to contribute to the story. It is the story that I loved, it was entirely believable and you can feel the sheer frustration of the characters of Nell and Cassandra in particular as they try to uncover the past that their ancestors went to great lengths to cover up. If you have read The House at Riverton and enjoyed it then you would love this as it is so much better. If you haven't read anything by Kate Morton but love a good mystery with love, intrigue and a country estate and all that that brings then you should definitely give The Forgotten Garden a try.

15 comments:

chicklitreviews said...

I really liked The House at Riverton and I bought this one as soon as it came out, but I still haven't read it! Sounds like I should get around to it! Chloe x

Dot said...

Chloe- It is really good, I would save it for when you have a few days spare as I really didn't want to put it down!

bookalicious said...

Been wanting to read it for ages and I'm finally taking it along on my holiday tomorrow! I actually really liked The House at Riverton and I have a hard time imagining that this could be better, but we'll see soon enough! :)

violetcrush said...

I LOVED this book too. I'm so glad you liked it. Looking at all the negative reviews around lately I was kind of worried that I might be the only one who liked it :)

Karen said...

I did enjoy this one but I actually enjoyed Morton's first book better. I will read her next one though - whenever it comes out??

savidgereads said...

Oh i read the House At Riverton and quite liked it and this sounds like it could be even better. I hadn't thought to read it but now I will! Thanks Dot!

Nicole said...

Glad you enjoyed this one. I love the cover.

I read The House at Riverton and I liked it okay but I think I'm still a little on the fence as to rather I want to read more.

Dot said...

bookalicious- Have a lovely holiday and I hope you enjoy it as much as I did!

Violet- No, I loved it, I actually hadn't read any reviews of it before I read it, pleased as it may have put me off!

Karen- everyone's different aren't they, I did enjoy The House at Riverton but I found this one harder to put down.

Simon- I think you would like this one, I look forward to hearing what you think if you get round to reading it!

Nicole- I was a bit like that, I thought that The House at Riverton was okay so I was really indecisive about reading this one but it really was excellent!

Melody said...

I've read mixed reviews about this one... but I'm curious about this book so I'll have to check it out.

Dot said...

Melody- I would definitely give it a go, it's one of the best that I have read this year!

farmlanebooks said...

I think I avoided reading this review first time round as I was in the middle of The House at Riverton. I'm so pleased to hear that this one is much better than her first book. I don't think I would pick up the Forgotten Garden without hearing that it is a big improvement, so thanks!

JoAnn said...

Great review! I was considering The House at Riverton, but may I should go right to The Forgotten Garden. It sounds very good!

Dot said...

JoAnn- I would probably read The Forgotten Garden first- The House at Riverton might but you off!

Diane said...

I have this one (unread). Glad to rtead your review --thanks

Dot said...

Dane- Thank you! I shall keep a look out for your review, you blog is lovely!!

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