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The Forgotten Garden | [Kate Morton]

The Forgotten Garden

Thirty-eight year old Cassandra is lost, alone, and grieving. Her much loved grandmother, Nell, has just died and Cassandra, her life already shaken by a tragic accident 10 years ago, feels like she has lost everything known and dear to her.
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Publisher's Summary

A foundling, an old book of dark fairy tales, a secret garden, a maze, an aristocratic family, a love denied, a mystery - The Forgotten Garden is a captivating, atmospheric, and a compulsive listen about the past, ghosts, family, and memories from best-selling author Kate Morton.

Thirty-eight year old Cassandra is lost, alone, and grieving. Her much loved grandmother, Nell, has just died and Cassandra, her life already shaken by a tragic accident 10 years ago, feels like she has lost everything known and dear to her.

But an unexpected and mysterious bequest from Nell turns Cassandra's life upside down and ends up challenging everything she thought she knew about herself and her family. Inheriting a book of dark and intriguing fairytales written by Eliza Makepeace Rutherford - the Victorian authoress who disappeared mysteriously in the early 20th century - as well as a cliff-top cottage on the other side of the world, Cassandra takes her courage in both hands to follow in the footsteps of Nell, on a quest to find out the truth about their history, their family and their past; little knowing that in the process, she will also discover a new life for herself.

©2008 Kate Morton; (P)2008 Bolinda Publishing

What the Critics Say

"This debut page-turner...recounts the crumbling of a prominent British family as seen through the eyes of one of its servants....Morton triumphs with a riveting plot, a touching but tense love story and a haunting ending." (Publishers Weekly)

What Members Say

Average Customer Rating

4.2 (6073 )
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4.3 (3813 )
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4.5 (3765 )
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2 star
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1 star
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Performance
Sort by:
  •  
    Beverly 09-17-09
    Beverly 09-17-09
    HELPFUL VOTES
    3
    ratings
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    10
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    "Story for a "rainy day and warm fire""

    Couldn't turn this audio book off .Can't stop and start with this one though, as it does take place during three different time periods and can be confusing. If you liked "Rebecca", or "The 13th Tale", you'll enjoy this one of Kate Mortons.

    3 of 3 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Rathen Yonkers, NY, United States 03-03-10
    Rathen Yonkers, NY, United States 03-03-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    8
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    11
    3
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    0
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    Overall
    "Worth listening to, but...."

    This is an engaging and quite well written book, tho in parts a bit sub-Dickens, with descriptions of "mudlarks" (scavengers from the river Thames)and other characters almost directly lifted from Dickens. Unfortunately the Australian reader has only two accents: Australian and Irish. So all regional English accents (eg Cornwall and Northern England which both have very distinctive accents), are rendered in a brogue: like portraying a southern belle with a Bronx accent. Apart from this annoyance, she reads well, however. If you don't know how the characters ought to sound, this might not bother you.

    6 of 7 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Alison Washington, DC, United States 02-13-15
    Alison Washington, DC, United States 02-13-15
    HELPFUL VOTES
    10
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    155
    35
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    0
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    Overall
    Performance
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    "Waste. Of. Time."

    I'm not a Kate Morton devotée, but I did read another of her books and enjoy it a lot, so I was hopeful when I started this. Unfortunately, I found it fell short - WAY short.

    Here were my issues with it:
    1. I didn't really care about any of the characters. They were somewhat two-dimensional.
    2. Her editor fell down on the job - this book was way too long for a relatively simple plot.
    3. The plot was surprisingly guessable for being so convoluted - the whole book felt like a study in patience as I waited (and waited and waited) to have the hypothesis I formed around the 3 hour mark proved right.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Emma SAVANNAH, TN, United States 08-07-13
    Emma SAVANNAH, TN, United States 08-07-13

    I am in my late twenties, a commuter, a romantic, & am loving life.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    24
    ratings
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    17
    17
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    Performance
    Story
    "Family Mysteries and Strong Female Characters"
    What made the experience of listening to The Forgotten Garden the most enjoyable?

    This book hooked my attention, and I found that I couldn't put it down. I loved the characters... loved seeing the events through several viewpoints. By the time I finished, I felt inspired to create a walled garden and to research my family history.


    What was one of the most memorable moments of The Forgotten Garden?

    I found it very heartwarming that certain personality traits were passed from great grandmother to grandmother to mother to daughter.... I was almost envious of the main character.. wanting a family mystery of my own to solve! Such a great read.


    What does Caroline Lee bring to the story that you wouldn’t experience if you just read the book?

    Caroline Lee has a beautiful and soothing voice - and such a great accent! She's the first narrator that's ever truly stood out to me.


    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Debbie Toney, Alabama 02-17-13
    Debbie Toney, Alabama 02-17-13 Member Since 2013

    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.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    865
    ratings
    REVIEWS
    329
    328
    FOLLOWERS
    FOLLOWING
    42
    2
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Magical, Haunting, Unexpected Twists and Turns"
    What did you love best about The Forgotten Garden?

    The telling of the stories of the extremely poor and the extremely rich . . . and how ironically both of these extremes are woefully unhappy . . . some of their own making . . . I loved how the family stories were woven together over three centuries (up to current times) to reveal how the mysteries of ones past both haunt and free them.


    Have you listened to any of Caroline Lee’s other performances before? How does this one compare?

    no


    Any additional comments?

    I loved the story telling in this book, and that its characters made difficult and sacrificial choices for the benefit of those they love, although it was not apparent to others at the time. The book is full of "evil versus good" and the abuse of power by the rich over their servants, and what happens, even to one of their own, when they try to think or love for themselves.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 12-03-11
    Janice Sugar Land, TX, United States 12-03-11 Member Since 2010

    Rating scale: 5=Loved it, 4=Liked it, 3=Ok, 2=Disappointed, 1=Hated it. I look for well developed characters, compelling stories.

    HELPFUL VOTES
    2176
    ratings
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    257
    199
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    498
    3
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Wonderful familay saga"
    Any additional comments?

    Beautifully written, I loved the entire story and how it was unraveled a piece at a time through several time periods and through the eyes of multiple characters. I loved the original fairy tales that were included and wish that Eliza's fairytale book was available as a separate edition. The ending was so satisfying, yet I was sorry for the story to end and to leave newly beloved friends.

    8 of 10 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Pavel Czech Republic 09-18-11
    Pavel Czech Republic 09-18-11 Member Since 2008
    HELPFUL VOTES
    107
    ratings
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    149
    80
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    8
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    Overall
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    Story
    "I tried it several times, but always stoped"

    It might be just me, but I couldn't keep attention when l listened to this book. I guess, it's not just my cup of tea here. So if you prefer thrillers that goes in fast peace, you might choose different book.

    5 of 6 people found this review helpful
  •  
    A. Sanchez USA 11-27-10
    A. Sanchez USA 11-27-10 Member Since 2002

    Shepherd

    HELPFUL VOTES
    71
    ratings
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    447
    17
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    Overall
    "Three stories in one!"

    This is a book that I will be listening to many times. There are three stories going on as the granddaughter, her grandmother and her great grandmother are revealed. The main character receives an inheritance of land and a mystery from her grandmother. The 3 stories unravel and are intertwined as you learn more about the fully developed characters. Descriptions, Suspense, Outstanding ending, Oh my!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    MJ Charlotte, NC, United States 06-03-10
    MJ Charlotte, NC, United States 06-03-10 Member Since 2009
    HELPFUL VOTES
    4
    ratings
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    "Wonderful"

    Enjoyed it so very much, loved it because of the different times that it took place, and also that it takes place in different countries. Characters I found were all very interesting, Caroline Lee is a super reader and did all of the parts so very well.

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
  •  
    Derek Union, KY, United States 04-07-10
    Derek Union, KY, United States 04-07-10
    HELPFUL VOTES
    43
    ratings
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    61
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    "Splendid!"

    I loved this book of four generations of women. It was so well written that it was difficult to believe that the characters - especially Elize Makepeace - were not real!

    2 of 2 people found this review helpful
Sort by:
  • Janine
    Fareham, United Kingdom
    5/18/11
    Overall
    "I struggled through this one..."

    I struggled through this book I'm afraid. I didn't find the story that gripping and the narrators monotone voice did nothing to enhance it.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lara
    Povoa de VarzimPortugal
    4/8/11
    Overall
    "It takes you to a wonderful place"

    I just finish listening to this book. For 5 days, I gave up my every free moment to listen to it. It got my attention in the first five minutes, and I am deeply sad it has ended already. It's a family story, told by three characters, in three diferent times. It has mistery, drama and just a little touch of romance (the correct amount, if you ask me). The narrative is fluid and the passages from one time to another easy to follow and well connected to each other. If you're a hopeless fan of images from the 1900's and family stories, this is the book for you.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Lara
    Sutton, Surrey, United Kingdom
    3/18/11
    Overall
    "The ending was very good"

    I loved the book. The story was very interesting and i never felt like i was bored.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Karen
    Maidenhead, Berkshire, United Kingdom
    7/7/10
    Overall
    "Time well spent"

    This is a cleverly woven story of three generations which avoids being cliched. The main characters, Cassandra, Nell and Eliza are convincingly portrayed and each evokes the time period in which she is set.

    I have thoroughly enjoyed this book.

    One word of advice; the narrotor's tone and English/Australian accent needs some getting used to.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • The Slowest Bookworm
    Stockport, UK
    5/22/09
    Overall
    "Great"

    One of the best books I have listened to in a long time! Great characters and a storyline that kept me listening well past my bedtime every night! I'll definitely be looking out for more of Kate's books.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • Valerie Harris
    Worcestershire
    11/15/08
    Overall
    "A good story spoilt"

    This was a good story but Oh dear the \" Cornish \" accent was so excruciating to listen to, spoilt it for me.

    1 of 1 people found this review helpful
  • grace cassar
    9/25/08
    Overall
    "Pleasant read but could have been shorter"

    I enjoyed this book but must admit could have been a couple of hours shorter.

    3 of 4 people found this review helpful
  • Victoria Cormie
    8/30/14
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Regional accents"
    What aspect of Caroline Lee’s performance might you have changed?

    I did enjoy Caroline Lee's voice when she wasn't trying to do regional accents, she has an engaging and warm voice. However, her attempts at Yorkshire and Cornish accents were so attrocious and grating that it would have been much better just to have not tried at all.


    2 of 3 people found this review helpful
  • Mrs
    8/3/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "Loved it!"

    Lovely characters, well written with intriguing plot. Lots of twists and turns to keep up interest.

    0 of 0 people found this review helpful
  • Magpie
    7/20/15
    Overall
    Performance
    Story
    "unexpected"
    Would you listen to The Forgotten Garden again? Why?

    I found this book slow to start with, and was unsure if it would grip my attention. But I kept on with it &, after I had gotten used to it moving around in time I found it compelling listening. Yes, I will listen to it again. It is a most fascinating story & kept me guessing. A very interesting listen indeed.


    0 of 0 people found this review helpful

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