Book Review: The Distant Hours by Kate Morton


If you read my last review of Kate Morton's The Forgotten Garden, then you know I loved it. Now I'm slightly obsessed with Kate Morton, which is why I wasted no time going to the library for another Morton book.

Her plot twists, character description, and writing style did not disappoint, and I'm still just as much a fan after reading book #2 as I was reading book #1. (Note: I say book #1 and #2, but these are not part of a series; don't be confused.)

There were many plot similarities--a back-and-forth timeline, a mystery to untangle, a hint of romance. I assume these are devices she uses in most, if not all, of her books. Ultimately, although I liked The Distant Hours, I definitely liked The Forgotten Garden better. If you're going to choose one, I'd recommend that latter.

The Distant Hours was a bit slower, in my opinion. I didn't move through it quite as quickly, and it took a bit of time to really get into. Also, I thought the ending was much more depressing than that of The Forgotten Garden. (Although, I had a friend tell me she didn't like Garden because she thought it was depressing, so I wonder what she'd think of The Distant Hours.) Still, I did very much enjoy The Distant Hours, and I would recommend it to anyone looking for an historical fiction packed with mystery and romance. It started slow, but by the end I was turning the pages quickly. 

Something that Morton incorporated into this book as well as Garden was a story within a story. In the novel, there's a character who writes a book, and that book plays an important role in the rest of the plot. I find this so fun and creative, because not only is Morton coming up with the story I'm reading, but she created another story inside that story.

Anyway, I'm excited to read another Kate Morton book, but I'm currently taking a break to reread the Anne of Green Gables series. These are my favorite books of all time. Absolute favorite. I've read the first book more times than I care to count, but it's been a while since I've reread the series in its entirety. I'm about halfway through book 1 now, and, to use the cliche, it's very much like meeting up with an old friend.

After I finish Anne, I'll probably take another recommendation from my summer reading list. AND, I still have part 2 of book 5 of George R.R. Martin's Game of Thrones series, so my to-read list is getting a bit ridiculous. 

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Have you read both The Forgotten Garden and The Distant Hours? Which did you like better? 
What are you currently reading?


  1. I haven't read either of those books, I'm currently reading Sand Castle Bay by Sherryl Woods. I picked it from my local used bookstore because of the local author sticker on the front.

  2. The Distant Hours is my favorite Morton book, but as an INFP, I am drawn morbid things. Whatever. I like reading stories with characters in the depths of despair. Do you see what I did there? ;) ;) Have fun going through the Anne books again!

  3. i need to get on some summer reading (before it's over) this book looks really good!

  4. I'm with Helene. I need to get to my summer reading list: now.

    I think I have about 15 books I wanted to read. 2/15... sucks!
    These look really good. maybe 2/17 now...

  5. I felt the EXACT same way about this book. Forgotten Garden was way better, but I still enjoyed this one too. I think you'd like her newest book. The Distant Hours is my least favorite of her 4. And ANNE is my FAVORITE series and movie of all time! I'm reading Princess Bride right now and loving it too. :)

  6. I love historical fiction!
    However, I just discovered a used book store (Heaven!) so I now have 12 books on my bedside table. I'll have to add this to the list after those.

  7. I've read both books & liked The Forgotten Garden better. Love Anne of Green Gables, too. :) Blessings.

  8. Oh, I'm definitely going to have to check out Morton's books from my library! They've been on my Goodreads list for a bit, but you just pushed them to the front. I'm always hesitant when books start out slowly, but I'll trust ya on this one. ;) Any other books you'd recommend? I suppose I could just check your Goodreads too!

  9. What is Game of Thrones about? I keep hearing everyone talking about it. Is it like Twilight? Everyone loves Twilight and I thought it was AWFUL!

  10. I'm going to see if my library has this book. I need some new reads!

    Have you read Still Alice by Lisa Genova? Such a good book!

  11. I am going in random order, so I read The Secret Keepers first, and am starting on The House at Riverton now.


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