Hey readers! Guess what? Today I’m sharing an amazing new novel with you by the author that got me started on book reviews. Yup, it’s Kate Morton’s suspenseful and intriguing new novel, The Lake House.
Living on her family’s idyllic lakeside estate in Cornwall, England, Alice Edevane is a bright, inquisitive, innocent, and precociously talented sixteen-year-old who loves to write stories. But the mysteries she pens are no match for the one her family is about to endure…
One midsummer’s eve, after a beautiful party drawing hundreds of guests to the estate has ended, the Edevanes discover that their youngest child, eleven-month-old Theo, has vanished without a trace. What follows is a tragedy that tears the family apart in ways they never imagined.
Decades later, Alice is living in London, having enjoyed a long successful career as an author. Theo’s case has never been solved, though Alice still harbors a suspicion as to the culprit. Miles away, Sadie Sparrow, a young detective in the London police force, is staying at her grandfather’s house in Cornwall. While out walking one day, she stumbles upon the old estate—now crumbling and covered with vines, clearly abandoned long ago. Her curiosity is sparked, setting off a series of events that will bring her and Alice together and reveal shocking truths about a past long gone…yet more present than ever.
A lush, atmospheric tale of intertwined destinies, this latest novel from a masterful storyteller is an enthralling, thoroughly satisfying read.
This book has got everything I like: strongly developed interesting characters, a well-crafted dual storyline, a mystery that starts strong and then keeps surprising you, evocatively romantic scenic descriptions, a wee hint of a sense of humor and lots and lots of great words.
I like words. This novel is the perfect kind of long. You know, the kind where you wish it was longer?
But enough about what I think. Today we’re here for something completely different. Instead of me discussing The Lake House AT you (ie reviewing it), I want to discuss it WITH you. I’m interested in what you think! I’ve been asked to participate in a Read-a-Thon of sorts to get us all talking.
Let’s get one thing clear here: I don’t usually do book clubs, even though they usually serve wine and snacks. There’s a reason that I didn’t major in English Lit in university. It’s because I like to read ’em, not ask deep and penetrating questions. But, I’ll do my best to come up with some good conversation starters.
I got the middle of the book where the author begins to add some meat and prepare us for the information to come. So grab pages 152-314 and let’s get started.
- By this point in the novel, as the mystery starts to develop , Morton begins dropping breadcrumbs or hints, some of which are designed to trick us, and others to lead us. How do you feel about this tool for creating suspense in general? How often do you get fooled? Can you identify some of these ‘hints’ from this book?
- Morton introduces a number of potential “suspects” in the baby’s disappearance – Alice, Ben, Rose, even Mr. Llewellyn. Which one stands out to you as most likely? Why?
- Ben is an interesting character. He’s mysterious and a loner, but seemingly a good person. What do you think is his purpose in the novel? Who do you think he means when he says he’ll miss ‘her’ (p. 226)? How believable is the relationship between him and Alice?
- Eleanor fascinated me. The flashbacks of her in her youth starkly contrast with how she is today as ‘Mother’. How do you identify with her? What do you think caused her to change so much and is the real Eleanor still within her?
Would love to hear your thoughts in the comments!
Join the Read-a-thon with Simon and Schuster on Goodreads here. And talk about the first few chapters with Jen here.