Posted: Tuesday, April 23, 2013, 8:31 am
A wonderful and beautifully written family saga layered with mystery, romance, hidden secrets and more.
This robust novel opens in 1959 as 16-year-old Laurel witnesses her mother stabbing a "stranger" who finds his way off the beaten path and to their family farmhouse.
Fast forward to 2011 and Laurel is now an award-winning actress whose mother is facing the last days of her life. Laurel decides she must know who the stranger was and why her mother killed him 50 years ago. As Laurel and her siblings gather at their childhood home for their mother's 90th birthday, she knows this might be her last chance to uncover the secrets of her mother's hidden past. Even if the truth hurts, she must find it.
Set in England, the story is woven through multiple time periods beginning with pre-WWII and beyond. It is absolutely brilliant the way the author jumps back and forth through time adding characters, layers and details that eventually converge into a stunning conclusion. The mystery is what grabs you in the beginning and the romance is what keeps you reading. You will love the characters, you will hate the characters and you will get lost in the details.
I actually guessed the great twist at the end, but even then I was only partly correct. Kate Morton writes with such exquisite detail you find yourself savoring every word. I've never read anything else by her, but now I feel compelled to read more. If you like to listen to audiobooks, the narrator of the audio edition was absolutely fantastic. I highly recommend giving this a try.