Title: The Forgotten Garden
Author: Kate Morton
Genre: Mystery, Historical Fiction, Romance
First published: July 1st 2008
Finished reading: April 5th 2013
Pages: 549

Rating 4

“Cassandra always hid when she read, though she never quite knew why. It was as if she couldn’t shake the guilty suspicion that she was being lazy, that surrendering herself so completely to something so enjoyable must surely be wrong.”


I’m normally not a big fan of the romance genre, but The Forgotten Garden convinced me. This novel might start bit slow, but as a whole it is definitely interesting. Kate Morton takes you on a journey through the past and present, trying to find out who Nell exactly is and what happened to her. She combines various story lines: the most important ones being the story of Eliza Makepeace, the author of little Nell’s book of fairy tales, and Cassandra’s story where she tries to discover the lost identity of her grandmother Nell. The prose is easy to read and all in all it is a pleasant read with interesting characters. Recommended to those who enjoy reading historical fiction.


It all begins with an unnamed girl playing a hiding game on a ship. A few pages later, a girl named Nell is turning twenty-one and her father reveals to her a devastating truth: she is not their daughter. He discovered her when she was only four years-old, standing alone holding a small suitcase with inside only a book of fairy tales and an extra dress at the dock where he worked. Many years later, Cassandra feels like she has lost everything dear to her after the death of her loved grandmother Nell. But Nell left her a surprise: she inherited an old house in the UK. This mysterious inheritance turns Cassandra’s life upside down and she travels to this mysterious town where the house is located. She also inherited a book of dark and intriguing fairytales written by Eliza Makepeace, a Victorian writer who disappeared mysteriously in the early twentieth century. Cassandra continues her grandmothers search to find the trust about her history, family and past; and she’s starting a new life for herself in the process.


The Forgotten Garden might not have the fastest pace on the planet, but it’s still an enjoyable read that made me forget I normally don’t really enjoy novels that involve a lot of romance. Kate Morton was able to convince me with this novel and I would say this is a definite must read for those who love historical fiction!