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Title: The Forgotten Garden

Writer: Kate Morton

Publisher: Pan Books (2008)

Pages: 645 p

Bought at:Kinokuniya Ngee Ann City (SGD 17,95)

This is a beautiful and engaging book. That’s my first impression when I finished the book. Kate Morton could make the reader glue to her story, absorb the pages with a contented feeling. She has interesting characters, great plot, and wonderful language.

The story happened in three different periods with three different characters, linked by one common thing: a cottage with the secret garden, told by Morton in a parallel way.

In 1915, a little girl was abandoned in a ship to Australia, and was found in Maryborough. She lost her memory and didn’t know what she was doing there. A family adopted her, and she began her new life.

In 1975, the little girl has grown old, knowing just a little about her past, and determined to find out who her family was, and why they abandoned her alone in a ship. Her investigation led her to Cornwall, England, in a beautiful estate called Blackhurst Manor, had been owned by an aristrocat family, The Mountrachets. What was their connection with her?

2005, she’s dying, and now her granddaughter will continue the quest. She found the cottage that she inherited from her grandmother. Inside the cottage, there was a secret garden, that kept a secret of her past, her grandmother past.

Reading this book reminded me of The Thirteenth Tale, full of dark family secrets and mysteries. And I love the touch of Victorian era in the story. Morton also put some of her sense of humour into the book. One of them was when the Mountrachets was having a party and invited Frances Hodgson Burnett, the writer of The Secret Garden. Frances was told about the hidden garden in the cottage and was very interested in that.

A garden raised from ruins to help bring a delicate young lady back to health!……..I should love to see it. The garden, I mean. My interest has been piqued. (p.448-449)

Sounds familiar? =) Morton made it as if her story was the inpiration of Frances’ famous book. That was amusing.

Anyway, I like this book, and this makes me want to find out more about Kate Morton and her other bestselling books.

I read this book as a part of Twent Ten Challenge, for New and Shiny Category.