Young Archivist Elodie Winslow has stumbled upon a satchel containing a photograph of a bewitching young Victorian woman, and a drawing of a gabled house that looks shockingly familiar to her. Her mother, who died tragically in a car accident many years prior, used to tell her a fairy tale which centered around a house that bears an uncanny resemblance to the drawing. In fact, Elodie is certain that the house is the SAME house that her mother detailed to her in her story. She sets out to find out the truth about the Artist and how the house connects to her own mother.
A century and a half earlier, a group of artists shared a house on the river, and one fateful weekend there is a tragic death, a disappearance, and a priceless missing family heirloom. The police wrap up the story in a tidy little box, but those who were the most intimately involved were never satisfied with the conclusions drawn. The mystery was never solved.
The Clockmaker’s Daughter, by Kate Morton, is another example of her detailed and rich story creations. The author has intrigued readers with The Distant Hours, The Forgotten Garden, The House at Riverton, The Secret Keeper, and The Lake House. Readers who love Kate Morton will not be disappointed in her latest work. If you haven’t read Kate Morton, her novels are epic and drawn out, rich in secrets and intrigue. She is not a quick beach read, but a commitment and a long journey you never regret.
Annie Hewitt is down on her luck. Her mother passed away, leaving her a secluded island house in Maine, and since Annie is broke and jobless she has no choice but to sort through her mother’s things and decide what to do next with her life. Unfortunately, the island has many bad memories for Annie, mostly attached to the house next door, a giant mansion where her mother was briefly the lady of the house.
Is the current man of the house responsible for her near death as a teen? Is he a sadistic murderer, waiting for his next victim? Or is he just a dark, brooding, reclusive writer with serious sex appeal? The line is getting blurry for Annie, especially when she is very limited on social company…with the exception of her 3 larger-than-life puppets, of course.
I didn’t know what to make of this book at first-I truly thought I was stepping into a serious “unreliable narrator” situation, which is great because I have a penchant for that type of literature. But as the story unfolds, there are others on the island who might not have pure intentions, and evil is lurking in the corners. Annie has to use her humor and wits to shake down the community and figure out just what is going on there on Peregrine Island..And where is the legacy her mother claimed to have left her at the cottage? Does someone else want it, too?
I highly recommend this book for anyone who has a darker sense of humor and a taste for sarcasm. It is a combination of romance, comedy, suspense and drama, all tied together. I plan to read whatever else Susan Elizabeth Phillips has to offer the world, after reading Heroes Are My Weakness. Highly recommended!