Friday, June 29, 2012

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton

Even though I am such a bookworm, you'd be surprised to know that I rarely follow an author.  What I mean to say is, I buy my titles based on a book's summary (am, in fact, actually totally peeved off by writers who don't place a little background content at the back of their novels -- yes, I'm talking about you, Danielle Steel!  You with your mala-Dynasty-esque poses and whatnot.  No offense to those who love her work.  J)

But I digress.  That being said, you'll know immediately if I'm a fan of a particular author when I have his/her complete works on hand.  And Kate Morton is definitely one of them.

Kate Morton's The Distant Hours

An Australian author who writes mostly period mystery pieces set in English soil, she had me hooked when I had the extreme pleasure of reading her first work, The House at Riverton (eternally grateful to the ex-BF, now Hubby, who actually went to 3 different bookstores here in Singapore just to obtain a copy.  Now that's something to be said of a guy who only steps foot inside a bookstore because I requested for a particular title as gift.  Thank you, luvs!)

The Distant Hours is actually Ms. Morton's 3rd masterpiece, and oh yeah!  I am still one huge fan!

One thing you'll have to be aware of when reading her work is that they come in huge sizes.  I mean, really big!  Count it as part of your daily exercise regimen whenever you feel like reading her work (I know I do.)  The Distant Hours in trade paperback form (pictured below) is, in fact, a whopping 673 pages (not including the title, table of contents, and acknowledgement pages)!

Almost 2 inches thick...

I don't mind it much as long as the story's good (as I do expect a Kate Morton book to really bring in the big guns!)

The Distant Hours tells the story of Edie Burchill and her mother.  Her mother, who as a 13-year-old child was evacuated from London during the Blitz in World War II and was taken in temporarily by the Blythe family.  In Milderhurst Castle, where the family lives, books, fantasy, and writing are the norm and the innocent girl's view of the world is changed forever.

Years later, a long lost letter, with the return address at Milderhurst Castle, finally reaches Edie's mother, who appears distressed upon reading the contents.  Circumstances later prompt Edie to return to the castle and talk to the sisters Blythe in search for answers to the mysteries of long ago (read the full summary at here.)

I have an active imagination, which comes in really handy when reading novels since I'm able to imagine the scenes in my head.  This, however, only works when the writer is also adept at penning her scenarios.  And Kate Morton is a master at that.  I guess one of the main reasons why her works are so thick is because of her use of flowery sentenes that stir the imagination with such vibrant descriptions.

Another thing that I love about a Kate Morton book is the unexpectedness of it all.  I could never really guess the ending of her stories.  It's not as easy as in the "butler did it" situations.  And The Distant Hours does not dissapoint.  I simply love the ending!  It made me emphatize with the characters more. 

I devoured each and every last word and am (im)patiently waiting for her 4th novel, The Secret Keeper, to arrive in stores by October this year.  Couldn't come fast enough... *sigh*


Not exactly related to the post, but I want to share another book that I highly recommend.  If you love the Twilight saga, then you'll definitely love My Name is Memory by Ann Brashares (yes, she of the Sisterhood of the Travelling Pants fame.)  You can read my full review here.


  1. Imagination is very useful. I think that bookworms are imaginative people. Imagination drives them to read and read.

    Congrats naman kay Kate Morton because you are her fan. ^_^

  2. I am also not fond of following a specific author. However, if I do, there must be really something remarkable in his works. So far, I've been so hooked with the CAT WHO... Series of Lilian Jackson Braun. These are sleuth novels that involve a journalist and two adorable cats as main characters. Many people mistake these as children stories because of their titles. But they are not. Braun wrote them especially for the adult populace. :)

    I hope someday, I'd be able to check out the book you just told us about. I love how honest you make your reviews. More power!

    1. I've seen her work at book stores. She has very interesting book covers. That's what I distinctly remeber about them. =)


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