My rating: 4 of 5 stars
This was my first time reading a book by Kate Morton. My Lord is her writing good. Her vocabulary alone astonished me and the eloquence with which she strings thoughts together was impeccable.
One quick note before I review the content of the book. That cover! It’s stunning and I have no doubt it will be an eye catcher. In fact, it’s what struck my fancy when I was browsing through NetGalley looking for my next great read.
This book is hard to describe as it’s so complex, with layers upon layers. But essentially it is the story of how people are interconnected in both place and time. The story spans over a century from 1862 to 2017, with multiple “mini-stories” that weave their way into one. There is a “mystery” element but I didn’t feel that the mystery was what carried the book. Honestly, I would say the romantic elements were stronger and the mystery was a subplot.
I enjoyed each character’s individual journey and felt that all the characters stood on their own with appropriate complexity and differentiation. There were times when the story bounced back and forth through time that I found myself forgetting who somebody was or how they were connected to the overall story, but after a quick refresher I was able to right myself. I will say that it was probably 100 pages too long and could have benefited from some significant editing. Because of it’s length, it did take me a bit longer to read than normal which didn’t help my memory and retention with regards to the story.
This book truly does transport you to another place and time entirely. I felt as if I was sitting in the garden outside Birchwood Manor enjoying a summer day with the river babbling and butterflies floating amidst the breeze. Kate Morton has a true talent
Lastly, I will say the chapter formatting was unique and clever. The story told by the Clockmaker’s Daughter was numbered in Roman numerals I through XII, a nod to the overall theme of time engrained in this book, while the stories told from the other characters were simply numerical in nature. Chapter XII concluded the book like a clock striking midnight.
-This book was gifted to me in exchange for an honest review. Thank you to NetGalley, Kate Morton, and Atria Books for the opportunity to review.-