I would recommend the book but not the audio book. The dialects performed by Miss Lee were awful. It was completely distracting and difficult to listen to. I am British and may have high standards, but have never been so annoyed. I have listened to other Books performed by this Actress and they were excellent while she was in her native Australian or Standard British which was passible. This Book incorporated northern dialects which ended up sounding like some odd combination or Irish and Cockney, thoroughly grating and annoying. I had to stop listening several times in frustration but returned because of the draw of the story it self. The story is quite compelling, if a little predictable. The Hidden Garden was much better as a book and Lee's narration was easier and more forgivable as the main character in the that book is in fact Australian.
I will avoid any performance Miss Lee has incorporating British Dialects. I will however seek out her Austrailian book, as she is a compelling narrator, just terrible at most British dialects.
I should have just read it.
I enjoyed the story and in particular the narrator, Caroline Lee however I have listened to two other Kate Morton books and found this one to be very similar, so much so I could predict a lot of the story. If you are a big Kate Morton fan then you will probably love it. For me however the formula of a big secret a long time ago that a current day child has to investigate and unravel is a little warn.
I have become a big Kate Morton fan over the past few years but this was definitely not her best work. The storyline just wasn't as compelling as usual and the characters were rather predictable. I usually really enjoy Caroline Lee's narration, but as a native Brit, I do find her attempts at local accents to be less than credible.
Interesting plot with too many unneccessary details but little intrigue. Numerous personal stories which made it difficult for a reader to develop an indepth relationship with any one character. Shifting between time periods was too frequent and left things hanging often. Could have been a much better book if trimmed of fluff and told more succinctly from fewer viewpoints with a twist at the ending.
Tell me about a good book. No other gifts necessary.
It has been so long since I've fallen in love with a book, but this one took me there from the first page. This book is about a woman and her sisters preparing to be with their mother at the mother's death. Having had this experience not too long ago myself, it took me back to that beautiful, conflicted, loving time. Also, somehow this author captured that often lingering wish... to have known one's mother when she was a young girl. Time and distance just cannot break the bond between a mother and a daughter. I've given this book to a number of friends and they have much the same reaction. We've talked about it again and again, and I know I'll be reading this book again and again. (I bought a hard copy as well. That's how good this one is.) And the narration is so perfect. Perfect.
Retired CFO, Army wife, Mom of five, Grandma of six, two sons who served in combat, love to read books that reflect my values and faith, love mysteries, historical, military stories, and books that don't waste my time . . . if it doesn't have an ending that was worth the wait, I'm not a happy camper.
This story is extraordinary on many levels . . . the backdrop of the war in England in 1941, the extreme "class" differences of the "haves" and the "have nots", even during war times. It saddened me, but didn't surprise me. The lengths that people will go for "appearances", and what they cover up. Oh, my . . . Kate Morton is a master story teller, keeping the listener absolutely hooked, weaving in the stuff that our souls feed on . . . truth, family loyalty, love . . . and stripping away the veneer of pretense, self indulgence, and greed. And the secrets are DEEP . . . I never figured them out . . . never had a clue . . . what a GREAT book!!!
Kate Morton has a unique way of telling stories from the past,and the present, that excites me as it develops mystery, clues , and answers, all at the same time. So many friends and reviewers said that the ending was shocking. Being a real mystery lover, I did figure out the 'surprise' very shortly into the book. But interestingly enough, I think that Kate Morton's writing is so exquisite, that confirming my suspicions a little more with each chapter, actually greatly added to my joy while reading this book. Every time something happened, my first thought was of how cleaver this story was unfolding!!
The basic plot was simple enough. A young girl witnessed the shocking episode of her mother killing a man who showed up at their home. It was ruled self-defense, and the child was asked to keep this event a secret from her siblings. Sixty years later, as all the siblings gather for their Mom's 90th birthday, and final days of her life, questions and new answers are discovered. Love, friendship, WW1 War time bombings in England, and families broken apart all added to the fascinating truth of 'the secret'.
Kate Morton never fails to please!!
Loved this one, which I got based on the synopsis alone, as I usually wait for listener reviews to come out.
It is a great story, which is what a novel is all about, right? But well told in different eras of time with an interesting plot twist at the end.
Kate Morton has such a way of writing that captivates you from the start with a magical touch. I loved listening to Caroline Lee's narration, as always. She gives just the right bit of change to her voice for each character. I recommend this book to anyone looking to escape their world and be transported back in time. Ready for my next adventure!
I enjoyed the story although I wouldn't recommend it to anyone else. I found the plot implausible - an accomplished actress puts her life on hold to try and figure out her mother's past? And a few of the things that happened were just too "coincidental" or contrived for me. But Caroline Lee is outstanding. I love her voice and her characterizations. I found her while listening to Lianne Moriarty's books and followed her here.