Customer Reviews for

The Distant Hours

Average Rating 4
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Most Helpful Favorable Review

30 out of 31 people found this review helpful.

A wonderful page-turning story

An ancient castle, dark family secrets, obsession, and madness are at the heart of Kate Morton's newest novel, The Distant Hours.

For most of their lives, a distance has always existed between Edie Burchill and her mother. Then one day, a letter, lost for decades, my...
An ancient castle, dark family secrets, obsession, and madness are at the heart of Kate Morton's newest novel, The Distant Hours.

For most of their lives, a distance has always existed between Edie Burchill and her mother. Then one day, a letter, lost for decades, mysteriously appears. Edie cannot help but burn with curiosity at her mother's reaction and the secrets of her past.

During World War II, Edie's mother, Meredith, was one of thousands of children evacuated from war torn London into the safety of the English countryside and into Millderhurst Castle owned by the Blythe family. There, Juniper Blythe and her twin sisters, Pen and Saffy, and their father Raymond, the author of a classic children's novel, make a home for the displaced girl. Enchanted by the magnificence of the castle and its family, Meredith is enthralled by her new, but temporary circumstances, and falls in love with her surroundings.

Decades later, gripped with curiosity of her mother's past, Edie travels to Millderhurst castle and meets the elderly and eccentric Blythe spinsters. Little by little, she discovers the dark secrets that lurk behind the castle walls and the real truth about the distant hours - the not too distant past.

The Distant Hours by Kate Morton is a masterful tale that unfolds slowly, one secret at a time, teasing the reader with every turn of the page. The setting itself is compelling - an ancient castle ravaged by time with plenty of secret rooms and passageways. I found all the characters enigmatic, each with their own fascinating story. There's a little of everything in this story - love, betrayal, murder, and tragedy and it all lends a powerful ambience from the start of this fabulous story to the powerful end. Kate Morton writes with detail and deep introspection, making the characters convincing and larger than life. One cannot help but like this story and admire the clever way it unfolds. I could not put this book down and it kept me awake at night as I was eager to read on to discover the next secret. It truly is a beautifully written story. If you like a cozy mystery that involves ancient castles with loads of mystery, this is a must to have on your reading list.

The Distant Hours is scheduled for release in early November. A very worthy novel that will be a bestseller! I have no doubt.

posted by Mirella on October 19, 2010

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Most Helpful Critical Review

11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

Also Disappointed

Like a previous reviewer I think that this book could have used some better editing and lots less words on the part of the author. Having read and loved the first two books by this author, I pre-ordered and couldn't wait to get this one. There was an interesting plot an...
Like a previous reviewer I think that this book could have used some better editing and lots less words on the part of the author. Having read and loved the first two books by this author, I pre-ordered and couldn't wait to get this one. There was an interesting plot and some unexpected twists but the book could have been 150 pages shorter and been much more enjoyable.

posted by mapp on November 21, 2010

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  • Posted November 21, 2010

    Also Disappointed

    Like a previous reviewer I think that this book could have used some better editing and lots less words on the part of the author. Having read and loved the first two books by this author, I pre-ordered and couldn't wait to get this one. There was an interesting plot and some unexpected twists but the book could have been 150 pages shorter and been much more enjoyable.

    11 out of 14 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 14, 2013

    I Also Recommend:

    I loved Kate Morton's book The Forgotten Garden, I loved it so m

    I loved Kate Morton's book The Forgotten Garden, I loved it so much I thought I'd try another one of her books. This book seemed to drag on, the beginning didn't capture me, and about 70 pages in it still hasn't grabbed me. I've tried my hardest to get interested in this book but each chapter is just boring. She does give very descriptive sceneries, but that's it. The character's are bland. I would recommend The Forgotten Garden, but that's all.

    3 out of 3 people found this review helpful.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted July 6, 2011

    Ugh

    I was attracted to this book because of the plot--it seemed unique and different. However, I was disappointed and indifferent--overall: it's slow and rather dreary like most other reviewers have said. I found it boring and drab. It failed to keep my interest and I kept wondering when the pace would pick up. Some parts (such as when the sisters' pasts are revealed) did add some spark but failed to carry through for me. There were times when I honestly didn't even want to open the book again. Truthfully, save your $24--don't waste your money like I did.

    2 out of 2 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted August 28, 2012

    This book just dragged on and on. Some may call it character de

    This book just dragged on and on. Some may call it character
    development but I found I cared less and knew little more as the
    chapters kept on. Not worth it, was great to read before sleep because
    it didn't capture you so I got lots of sleep.

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted January 28, 2011

    Sadly disappointed...

    When I finished Kate Morton's House at Riverton I enthusiastically recommended it to EVERYONE I knew! And so I couldn't wait to read the Distant Hours. Despite Morton's well-fleshed characters and an intriguing premise, I found the book to be tedious, convoluted and therefore much too long. I DO look forward Morton's next creation - she's still my favorite author................

    1 out of 1 people found this review helpful.

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  • Posted June 6, 2011

    Not forgotten garden

    I was disappointed in this book, after reading the fortotten garden. There was too much description and slow moving plot, for my taste. It could have been a shorter book.

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  • Posted March 10, 2011

    more from this reviewer

    Okay

    I absolutely loved The Forgotten Garden but the Distant Hours was not as good. The first half of the novel is very slow moving but the story picks up considerably in the last 200 pages. It was worth the read but not her best.

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  • Posted December 29, 2010

    Slow, Plodding Story

    I enjoyed Kate Morton's books "The House at Riverton" and "The Forgotten Garden" so I bought "the Distant Hours." I'm almost finished with this tedious book and glad of it. It isn't a particularly bad book; just a dull, unexciting read.

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  • Posted December 19, 2010

    Dreary

    Is it just me or is this author incapable of writing a story that does not include either (1) a desolate castle/mansion in England, or (2) a devastating fire? She's a one-trick pony! I hate the sheer length of her stories where she throws out little tidbits every once in a while that keep you reading to find out what the answers to the mysteries are; but when they sloooooowly start to be revealed (at around page 400 of 560), they turn out to be such a cliche. The Mud Man very conveniently recreated by Thomas Cavill? - oh, please. I enjoy reading a long book if it's engrossing and rewarding - this one was definitely not.

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