A tiny girl is abandoned on a ship headed for Australia in 1913. She arrives completely alone with nothing but a small suitcase containing a few clothes and a single book; a beautiful volume of fairy tales. She is taken in by the dockmaster and his wife and raised as their own. On her twenty-first birthday, they tell her the truth, and with her sense of self shattered and very little to go on, "Nell" sets out to trace her real identity. Her quest leads her to Blackhurst Manor on the Cornish coast and the secrets of the doomed Mountrachet family. But it is not until her granddaughter, Cassandra, takes up the search after Nell’s death that all the pieces of the puzzle are assembled. A spellbinding tale of mystery and self-discovery,
The Forgotten Garden will take hold of your imagination and never let go.
Paperback, 549 pages
Published February 16th 2010 by Washington Square Press
The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton is a new favorite book of mine.
I have wanted to read this book as soon as it was released. But being cheap I waited till the trade paperback version came out.
Kate Morton's second novel is a rich and satisfying mystery set in England and Australia of a woman's search for her identity. A cottage on the Cornish coast is home to secrets that pull together three generations of women, despite the decades and oceans that separate them.
The story of begins in 1913 with a 3 year old on a journey from England to Australia. However no adult is traveling with her. The story jumps from 1913 to 2005, back to 1975 and even back to the late 1800's. With all that jumping back and forth the story is told without confusion. It just flows from one chapter and different time period smoothly. I finished this book in a mere 5 days and was so sad to see it end.
I got to know Neil, Cassandra and Eliza so well. I felt for Nell upon her 21st birthday when she receives shocking news that turns her world upside down. The story line with Eliza and her cousin, aunt and uncle was kinda creepy and made me sat the way she was treated.
I loved the fairy tales added to this book, something original that added so much.
I highly recommend this book and will be reading more by this talented author.