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The distant hours : a novel
2011
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Summary
Another unforgettable tale weaving together history and mystery from the bestselling author of The House at Riverton and The Forgotten Garden.

A long lost letter arrives in the post and Edie Burchill finds herself on a journey to Middlhurst Castle, a great but moldering old place, where the Blythe spinsters live and where her mother was billeted fifty years before as a thirteen-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 fiance 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 Millderhurst, 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 characters beset by circumstance and haunted by memory, that reminds us of the rich power of storytelling.

Trade Reviews
Booklist Review
Edie Burchill leads a quiet life as the young vice-president of a small London publishing house. On a trip to meet with a potential author, she gets lost and accidentally discovers Milderhurst Castle, the once stately home in which, as a child, her mother was billeted during WWII. Edie senses a mystery to be uncovered, especially since her normally distant mother burst into tears after receiving a long-lost letter from the castle. Edie manages to get acquainted with the castle's occupants, including the mysterious Blythe sisters Percy, Saffy, and the emotionally damaged Juniper. Also present is the ghost of their father, Raymond, famous author of terrifying children's books and overbearing patriarch. As the secrets behind Milderhurst Castle slowly reveal themselves, Edie discovers a family victimized by its own history and haunted by its memories as well as a mother eager to make up for lost time. In the tradition of the classic gothic novels, The Distant Hours is a spellbinding journey, a mystery whose well-paced revelations provide a surprising and deeply satisfying read.--Gladstein, Carol Copyright 2010 Booklist
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