Synopses & Reviews
A long lost letter arrives in the post and Edie Burchill finds herself on a journey to Milderhurst Castle, a great but moldering old house, where the Blythe spinsters live and where her mother was billeted 50 years before as a 13-year-old child during WW II. The elder Blythe sisters are twins and have spent most of their lives looking after the third and youngest sister, Juniper, who hasn’t been the same since her fiancé jilted her in 1941.
Inside the decaying castle, Edie begins to unravel her mother’s past. But there are other secrets hidden in the stones of Milderhurst, and Edie is about to learn more than she expected. The truth of what happened in 'the distant hours' of the past has been waiting a long time for someone to find it.
Morton once again enthralls readers with an atmospheric story, featuring unforgettable characters beset by love and circumstance and haunted by memory, that reminds us of the rich power of storytelling
"A letter posted in 1941 finally reaches its destination in 1992 with powerful repercussions for Edie Burchill, a London book editor, in this enthralling romantic thriller from Australian author Morton (The Forgotten Garden). At crumbling Milderhurst Castle live elderly twins Persephone and Seraphina and their younger half-sister, Juniper, the three eccentric spinster daughters of the late Raymond Blythe, author of The True History of the Mud Man, a children's classic Edie adores. Juniper addressed the letter to Meredith, Edie's mother, then a young teen evacuated to Milderhurst during the Blitz. Edie, who's later invited to write an introduction to a reprint of Raymond's masterpiece, visits the seedily alluring castle in search of answers. Why was her mother so shattered by the contents of a letter sent 51 years earlier? And what happened to soldier Thomas Cavill, Juniper's long-missing fiancé and Meredith's former teacher? Despite the many competing narratives, the answers will stun readers." Publishers Weekly (Copyright PWyxz LLC)
“A nuanced exploration of family secrets and betrayal . . . captivating.” —People (****)
“A new leap in Morton’s authorial choreography. . . . A rich treat for fans of historical fiction.” —The Washington Post
“A spellbinding journey, a mystery whose well-paced revelations provide a surprising and deeply satisfying read.” —Booklist
“A fresh and thrilling gothic mystery. . . . Layers of deliciously surprising secrets.”
The bestselling author of The House at Riverton and The Forgotten Garden offers another unforgettable tale weaving together history and mystery.
About the Author
Kate Morton, a native Australian, holds degrees in dramatic art and English literature and is currently a doctoral candidate at the University of Queensland. She lives with her family in Brisbane, Australia.