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Amazon Best of the Month, April 2008: In her cinematic debut novel, Kate Morton immerses readers in the dramas of the Ashbury family at their crumbling English country estate in the years surrounding World War I, an age when Edwardian civility, shaken by war, unravels into the Roaring Twenties. Grace came to serve in the house as a girl. She left as a young woman, after the presumed suicide of a famous young poet at the property's lake. Though she has dutifully kept the family's secrets for decades, memories flood back in the twilight of her life when a young filmmaker comes calling with questions about how the poet really died--and why the Ashbury sisters never again spoke to each other afterward. With beautifully crafted prose, Morton methodically reveals how passion and fate transpired that night at the lake, with truly shocking results. Her final revelation at the story's close packs a satisfyi! ng (and not overly sentimental) emotional punch. --Mari Malcolm --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
Starred Review. This debut page-turner from Australian Morton recounts the crumbling of a prominent British family as seen through the eyes of one of its servants. At 14, Grace Reeves leaves home to work for her mother's former employers at Riverton House. She is the same age as Hannah, the headstrong middle child who visits her uncle, Lord Ashbury, at Riverton House with her siblings Emmeline and David. Fascinated, Grace observes their comings and goings and, as an invisible maid, is privy to the secrets she will spend a lifetime pretending to forget. But when a filmmaker working on a movie about the family contacts a 98-year-old Grace to fact-check particulars, the memories come swirling back. The plot largely revolves around sisters Hannah and Emmeline, who were present when a family friend, the young poet R.S. Hunter, allegedly committed suicide at Riverton. Grace hints throughout the narrative that no one knows the real story, and as she chronicles Hannah's schemes to have her own life and the curdling of younger Emmeline's jealousy, the truth about the poet's death is revealed. Morton triumphs with a riveting plot, a touching but tense love story and a haunting ending. (Apr.)
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved. --This text refers to the Hardcover edition.
i didn't enjoy this book as much of Kate's other books. i found it rather predicable.Published 14 days ago by Judy Walton
A decent read, but not my favourite Kate Morton book!
Kate is an amazing storyteller, but with this book i was left feeling disappointed with how the story wrapped up. Read more
It was very interesting about a secret that an old lady kept for years.Published 3 months ago by Pauline Siscoe
I love the author's style of writing and in particular the way she wove past and present into an exciting read. Read morePublished 3 months ago by Sue
The book keeps you riveted and wondering. Kate Morton has quickly become one of my favorite authors.Published 9 months ago by Lee Goertzen
This saga threaded together innumerable intricacies. I warn antsy readers, patience is a must. This story isn’t linear. Read morePublished 10 months ago by Carolyn
All I can say is.....if you want a good read, Kate Morton is the author for you. Her books are amazing!!Published 11 months ago by gerry
Kate Morton is a master of gothic Edwardian mysteries. Her evocation of life between the two world wars: the manor houses, the culture of a privileged society of a dying... Read morePublished 16 months ago by Nikki