I few weeks ago a friend of mine caught me off guard by asking me what my favourite book was. My first reaction was that this would be an easy answer considering the amount of books I read. But to be honest I had no response. I mentally went through my library and had nothing that stood out the same way my favourite shirt does. Then, I was roaming around Chapters and the book The Forgotten Garden caught my eye. After reading the gist of it, I was sold. I was looking for a lighter read after the darker books I had been reading and The Forgotten Garden was exactly what I was looking for on both agendas, it has taken top spot and lit my heart.
The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton is an amazing story of a four year old girl found alone on a wharf in Australia in 1913. She doesn't know who she is or where she came from, all she has as a reminder of her past is a book of fairytales. She is found by a man who adopts her into his family and names her Nell. On her 21st birthday her father reveals to her how he found her and that he is unsure of her past. Her whole life is changed but Nell doesn't begin her search of who she really is until 1975. Shortly after, her granddaughter Cassandra comes to live with her and she gives up her investigation to take care of her. In 2005, when Nell passes away, Cassandra learns her grandmother's secret and starts out to finish what Nell started.
After reading this book I am convinced that Kate Morton is one of the best writers I have read to date. Her book bounces between different times as she tells the stories of Nell's family in the early 1900s, Nell's discoveries in 1975 and then the present investigating of Cassandra in 2005. She writes it so well that I never felt confused or overwhelmed. She even wrote out some of the fairytales in Nell's books and they are very well written.
Please see the video below of Kate herself discussing the book and what inspired her to write it. And for anyone struggling with what to read next pick this up because you won't be disappointed. I'm going to give it 5 fairy tales out of 5.