The Lake House, by Kate Morton
Hardcover: 512 pages
Publisher: Atria Books (October 20, 2015)
Reading Sara Rating: 6/10
Amazon Book Description: 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.
Reading Sara Review: I listened to the Lake House on audiobook, so bear that in mind when reading this review.
This book was classic Kate Morton – she is a creative storyteller that weaves pieces together magically. The characters were well-developed and interesting – though there were a lot of them to keep track of through the story. The plot is mostly unpredictable, and the scenes are easy to visualize because the descriptive writing flows from the page.
My biggest complaints about the book are things that were likely within my control. Because I was listening to it via audiobook, I would sometimes space out and forget what was happening. It took me a while to get into it since I never had a huge chunk of time to dive into it (my commute to work is roughly 10 minutes, not very conducive to a book with long chapters). The books jumps around in time often – so I found myself extremely confused many times about who was talking and what pieces of their story were important. Between the confusion and the lack of time to get into the book, it took me months to get through (which is rare for me).
There are two primary mysteries in the story: the disappearance of Theo (which involves the Edevane family) and the “Bailey Case” which detective Sadie Sparrow alludes to many times. I thought it took too long to finally uncover what the Bailey Case was about and what went wrong – but glad that it was resolved in the end. As for the disappearance of Theo, Morton did a great job of keeping the mystery alive throughout as bits are uncovered by various characters. I thought that I knew what happened to Theo multiple times, but enjoyed discovering the truth alongside the other characters.
I know that with the new rating system a six may seem like I did not like this book – which is not the case. It was a lovely book, and I hope that if the description appeals to you that you read it and tell me what you think! For me, it took me too long to be invested, and I eventually was just reading to get the conclusion (but again, that may be my fault for not making the time!).