The Lake House by Kate Morton
Rating: 5 stars
Waiting for a new Kate Morton book is always a combination of excitement about what awaits and frustration that it's not coming quickly enough. The magical ability she has to write wonderful novels steeped in mystery that blend the past and the present have made her one of the most highly regarded authors today.
The Lake House was so very well worth the wait and absolutely what I needed to pull back my love of reading after a dry spell where I couldn't find anything engaging. From it's opening chapter in 1930's Cornwall where someone is burying something deep in the woods we are left in no doubt that Morton is sowing the seeds for another wonderful mystery.
The other wonderful thing Morton does is link her stories to the places they occurred using the house as almost a character in the story. In this case the house is Loeanneth the home of the Edevane family, it's magnificent grounds hold so significant a part in this book that it's wonderful to have Morton provide such wonderful flowing descriptions of it and you long to be able to be there having such a clear picture painted for you.
Morton's story revolves around the unsolved disappearance of a young baby Theo Edevane from Loeanneth in 1933, found missing from his nursery the night after a large party he was never found nor any answer reached as to who took him and why.
This was perhaps the most gripping book I've read in many years, the characters are many and shift between Cornwall in the present day and Loeanneth in the 1930's and back to the time of the first world war. Each and every character plays their part in the story and each hold their own secrets about what may or may not have happened to Baby Theo. In present day we follow detective Sadie Sparrow as she, whilst on forced sabbatical from the met, investigates the case after stumbling across Loeanneth.
There were so many times in this book I thought I had it all figured out, I'd have a neat and tidy culprit and explanation only to have it shift away by another discovery in the next chapter. It was driving me crazy and the result was just a compulsion to keep reading and reading till I figured it out.
The ending was outstanding and so well crafted as not to have it glaringly obvious early in the book, it creeps up on you as a reader and is eminently satisfying. It was truly wonderful book as a result of outstanding writing throughout and Morton's ability to release information at just the right times to drive her narrative forward with pace and atmosphere.
A standout book for me, it is one of the best books I've read in a very long time and I could not recommended it more highly.