Oh, Kate Morton, how I love you!
The House at Riverton was wonderful.
The Distant Hours was simply delicious.
But The Forgotten Garden? It was just, well, it was everything I could possibly want in a novel. A mystery with a ghost story feel. Romance, lost love, found love, familial love, orphans, good guys, villains, a manor, a secret garden (and speaking of that, well-done cameos with real life figures), fairy tales, and did I mention suspense?
Well, and then, of course, Kate Morton is a writer of astounding grace and perspicacity. I mean, I know that no one is perfect and all that, but quite possibly, Kate Morton is a perfect writer. Really.
OK, so here is the story in a nutshell: a little girl is lost on a big ship while waiting for the Authoress to come back to get her. But the Authoress never does, and when the ship lands in Australia, the little girl, assumed to be an orphan, is adopted by the dockmaster and his wife. When she is grown, the dockmaster tells Nell the truth—or as much as he knows of it. Chapter by chapter, the truth is gradually uncovered, sometimes by Nell and sometimes by her granddaughter, Cassandra. Who is the Authoress? Who is Nell? Why was she left alone on a ship bound for Australia?
The cast of characters reaches far back into the life of the Authoress. You'll meet a man in a black suit, a Dickensian harridan, an obsessive uncle, a kindly old fisherman, a beautiful invalid, a wicked aunt, and, of course, a garden maze that follows many twists and turns and dead ends.
Please read this book. And please, Kate Morton, MORE!