The Clockmaker's Daughter
A rich, spellbinding new novel from the author of The Lake House—the story of a love affair and a mysterious murder that cast their shadow across generations, set in England from the 1860's until the present day.My real name, no one remembers.The truth about that summer, no one else knows.In the summer of 1862, a group of young artists led by the passionate and talented Edward Radcliffe descends upon Birchwood Manor on the banks of the Upper Thames. Their plan: to spend a secluded summer month in a haze of inspiration and creativity. But by the time their stay is over, one woman has been shot dead while another has disappeared; a priceless heirloom is missing; and Edward Radcliffe’s life is in ruins.Over one hundred and fifty years later, Elodie Winslow, a young archivist in London, uncovers a leather satchel containing two seemingly unrelated items: a sepia photograph of an arresting-looking woman in Victorian clothing, and an artist’s sketchbook containing the drawing of a twin-gabled house on the bend of a river.Why does Birchwood Manor feel so familiar to Elodie? And who is the beautiful woman in the photograph? Will she ever give up her secrets?Told by multiple voices across time, The Clockmaker’s Daughter is a story of murder, mystery, and thievery, of art, love and loss. And flowing through its pages like a river, is the voice of a woman who stands outside time, whose name has been forgotten by history, but who has watched it all unfold: Birdie Bell, the clockmaker’s daughter.

The Clockmaker's Daughter Details

TitleThe Clockmaker's Daughter
Author
LanguageEnglish
ReleaseOct 9th, 2018
PublisherAtria Books
ISBN-139781451649390
Rating
GenreHistorical, Historical Fiction, Fiction, Mystery

The Clockmaker's Daughter Review

  • Diane S ☔
    January 1, 1970
    Find your favorite reading spot, grab your beverage of choice, (actually this would be the perfect book to read in front of a fireplace, wrapped in a quilt, watching the snow or rain fall, but I didn't have those choices) and let Kate Morton transport you to Birchwood Manor on the Thames. Yes, she has written about another house, a house that has witnessed great love and unbearable loss, a house that is the repository of many a secret. An immersive, and seductive read, albeit a leisurely one. A Find your favorite reading spot, grab your beverage of choice, (actually this would be the perfect book to read in front of a fireplace, wrapped in a quilt, watching the snow or rain fall, but I didn't have those choices) and let Kate Morton transport you to Birchwood Manor on the Thames. Yes, she has written about another house, a house that has witnessed great love and unbearable loss, a house that is the repository of many a secret. An immersive, and seductive read, albeit a leisurely one. A Gothic tale, where past and present meet, where there is someone who has witnessed it all, unable to leave.Lush settings, and fantastic period detail. Of impressions of people on places throughout history. Many characters who tell their stories, not in alternate chapters as is usual in these type of dual timeline stories, but in a brilliant rendering of the blending of time on this house that has witnessed so much. The stories of the present and the past bleed into each other, until the connections between them are revealed. I loved it, I think Morton has outdone herself here. This is not a novel to be rushed through, but one to sink into and enjoy. Many characters, but it is not necessary, maybe a little impossible, to remember and place them all in their timelines, all will become clear. Patience, dear reader. There is art, a mystery, a disappearance of a beautiful gemstone and a beloved person. There are bereft children, sans parents, and a few young girls who each hold a key to unraveling the story. The resolution may not please all, but I found it fitting, some houses may never give up all their secrets. The prose is wonderful, insightful and many that are quotable. I had a few favorites but could have found many more."Human beings are curators. Each polishes his or her own favored memories, in order to create a narrative that pleases. Some events are repared and polished for display; others are deemed unworthy and cast aside, shelved below ground in the overflowing storeroom of the mind. The process is not dishonest: it is the only way people can live with themselves and the weight of their experiences."Parents and children. The simplest relationship in the world and yet the most complex. One generation passes to the next a suitcase filled with jumbled jigsaw pieces from countless puzzles collected over time and says, "See what you can make out of these."The above are a few I loved, believe me there are many more.ARC from Edelweiss.
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  • Paromjit
    January 1, 1970
    Kate Morton writes a beautiful piece of epic interconnected historical fiction, with a strong fantastical element, through the ages, with the focus on the rambling Birchwood Manor by the Thames. In 1862, the owner of the Manor, the gifted artist, Edward Radcliffe, and a group of bohemian artists spend the summer there, hoping to be artistically inspired. However, it all ends in catastrophe as a woman is murdered, plus the orphaned artistic muse, Birdie Bell, the clockmaker's daughter, disappears Kate Morton writes a beautiful piece of epic interconnected historical fiction, with a strong fantastical element, through the ages, with the focus on the rambling Birchwood Manor by the Thames. In 1862, the owner of the Manor, the gifted artist, Edward Radcliffe, and a group of bohemian artists spend the summer there, hoping to be artistically inspired. However, it all ends in catastrophe as a woman is murdered, plus the orphaned artistic muse, Birdie Bell, the clockmaker's daughter, disappears suspected of the theft and Edward's life is shattered into pieces. What really happened? In the present, a young London archivist on the cusp of getting married, Elodie Winslow, is trawling through the archives of James Stratton, and in a leather satchel finds a photograph of a Victorian woman and a sketchbook with the drawing of a home by the river, which somehow feels familiar. With multiple narrators, we learn of the history of Birchwood Manor, those who have resided there through the generations and their lives, intrigue and difficulties, throughout with the ghostly presence of Birdie Bell. All these disparate stories over time come to connect. Elodie delves into the mystery of the items in the satchel, unaware of her personal family connection and how her investigations will impact on her future and personal life. This is a story of Birchwood Manor, murder, mystery, theft, secrets, lies, art, love, loss and both world wars. The author gives us rich historical details in a narrative that goes back and forth in time in this atmospheric and complex tale. I found this novel entertaining and absorbing if a trifle over long. Many thanks to Panmacmillan for an ARC.
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  • Melisa
    January 1, 1970
    You know you’re a baller when your name is bigger than the title🙌🤗
  • Chelsea Humphrey
    January 1, 1970
    Well, I guess you can tell from my rating that this wasn’t my favorite book by Morton, but it wasn’t bad. Maybe my expectations were simply not in the right place, but I had a difficult time following the jumping timelines and in turn, connecting with the characters. I’ll think on this one a bit more before writing a full review, but fans of her previous work might be appreciative to know going into this that it’s a bit different than her other novels. Full review to come. *I received a review c Well, I guess you can tell from my rating that this wasn’t my favorite book by Morton, but it wasn’t bad. Maybe my expectations were simply not in the right place, but I had a difficult time following the jumping timelines and in turn, connecting with the characters. I’ll think on this one a bit more before writing a full review, but fans of her previous work might be appreciative to know going into this that it’s a bit different than her other novels. Full review to come. *I received a review copy from the publisher.
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  • Holly B
    January 1, 1970
    A romantic love story, a mystery and a murder Birchwood Manor is located near the Thames and it is at the center of this story and it also holds the truth about what happened one summer in 1862. The house is like a character and has "a voice" that whispers to the reader and makes connections that won't be revealed until later. I kept asking myself, "who is speaking"? That will be revealed later.The story spans from the 1860's to present day and artist, Edward Radcliffe is at the heart of the my A romantic love story, a mystery and a murder Birchwood Manor is located near the Thames and it is at the center of this story and it also holds the truth about what happened one summer in 1862. The house is like a character and has "a voice" that whispers to the reader and makes connections that won't be revealed until later. I kept asking myself, "who is speaking"? That will be revealed later.The story spans from the 1860's to present day and artist, Edward Radcliffe is at the heart of the mystery.  He has found the love of his life, but will his heart will be broken? This part of the story felt old-fashioned and romantic. The characters in the present day story felt very modern and I was intrigued to find out what the connections between past and present were.This is my first Kate Morton book and it was such an atmospheric, detailed and absorbing tale. There was intrigue, mystery and a rich setting that I could picture perfectly in my mind. I thought the characters were interesting and I wanted to learn what would happen to them in the end. This is not a fast paced page-turner, it is more like a slow brewing mystery. I took my time and enjoyed this one.Yes, there are lots of characters and two time periods, but the author was able to capture my imagination. I wanted to keep turning the pages to learn the secrets of the mansion. I also enjoyed gathering the many clues that were revealed along the way. I enjoyed getting immersed in the characters and unraveling the extensive plot. The rich details of this beautifully written novel were an added bonus.Thanks to Atria for my copy.  Review will post to my blog on publication date 10/09/2018.
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  • Tammy
    January 1, 1970
    The discovery of an old photograph kicks off this account about the inhabitants of a manor house which eventually contains a mannerly prescence. An archivist, archeologist, painter and pick pocket are among the people that pepper this tale. Moving between the late 1850’s, early 1860’s, post WWI, WWII and the summer of 2017, Morton’s plot is typically dense and contains a wide variety of characters with fuzzy familial and tangential relationships. Some characters are introduced only to have their The discovery of an old photograph kicks off this account about the inhabitants of a manor house which eventually contains a mannerly prescence. An archivist, archeologist, painter and pick pocket are among the people that pepper this tale. Moving between the late 1850’s, early 1860’s, post WWI, WWII and the summer of 2017, Morton’s plot is typically dense and contains a wide variety of characters with fuzzy familial and tangential relationships. Some characters are introduced only to have their storylines dropped or underdeveloped. This highly anticipated novel will, no doubt, thrill Morton’s fans. Initially I was engaged but ultimately I was not overly enthused.
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  • James
    January 1, 1970
    Kate Morton is one of my favorite authors, and when The Clockmaker's Daughter came out this year, I was one of the first to jump on NetGalley to get a copy. I was so excited to be awarded the book and added it to my August reading queue. It made for a good alternate style given I'm also running a children's book readathon this month! Although not my favorite of all her novels, it's an enchanting story and covers a lot of beautiful generations within a couple of families.What I loved the most abo Kate Morton is one of my favorite authors, and when The Clockmaker's Daughter came out this year, I was one of the first to jump on NetGalley to get a copy. I was so excited to be awarded the book and added it to my August reading queue. It made for a good alternate style given I'm also running a children's book readathon this month! Although not my favorite of all her novels, it's an enchanting story and covers a lot of beautiful generations within a couple of families.What I loved the most about this book was how you never quite knew who was speaking in the beginning of a chapter. It took a few paragraphs or a page or two before it became obvious. Some might be bothered by this approach, but it added to mystery and ambiance for me. The Radcliffe family was quite peculiar, and I wondered whether it would turn out to be accidental death or murder for one or two characters. As the story unfolds and we learned about Elodie in 2017/8 discovering the past, everything comes flooding forward. There are memorable characters in this book and I recommend it for that reason alone. On the flip side, there are over 30 main characters, so it gets a tad difficult to keep focused if you have to put the book down for more than a day at a time. Don't read it with anything else like I did.Morton is the queen of lyrical words and astounding settings. The plot is strong, and the twist at the end is great. Along the path, it's much lighter tho... less about the mystery and more about hearing what happened to people over a century. I found myself eager for more action than present in the book. But it still captured my heart and attention. A solid 4 stars.
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  • Carrie
    January 1, 1970
    When it comes to an author like Kate Morton readers should be well aware that they will find great writing when picking up a new book and that was still the case with The Clockmaker’s Daughter. However, even with lovely writing sometimes things just don’t work for some readers and that would be my dilemma with this one.The Clockmaker’s Daughter is a historical fiction read told from multiple points of view over the course of decades. In the present Elodie Winslow is going through an old satchel When it comes to an author like Kate Morton readers should be well aware that they will find great writing when picking up a new book and that was still the case with The Clockmaker’s Daughter. However, even with lovely writing sometimes things just don’t work for some readers and that would be my dilemma with this one.The Clockmaker’s Daughter is a historical fiction read told from multiple points of view over the course of decades. In the present Elodie Winslow is going through an old satchel when she comes across a few items that draw her interest. Readers are then taken back to the mid 1800s to the Birchwood Manor and the mystery that surrounds it.Now, normally I am one that can love a story with multiple characters and multiple timelines however it all depends on the way things are done. With this story the author has taken multiple to a whole new level in the fact I found it hard to keep track of so many characters coming into the story. Sometimes I would get the feeling I may need to take notes and then reading feels more like homework than relaxation.With so much going on I had a hard time connecting to the characters and story with struggling to keep up too. Quite often I wouldn’t know who I was following and for me I prefer a clearer style to follow. In the end I’d say this one just wasn’t my cup of tea but I’m sure some readers will love it.I received an advance copy from the publisher via NetGalley.For more reviews please visit https://carriesbookreviews.com/
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  • Dale Harcombe
    January 1, 1970
    4 and a half starsThis story of Birchwood Manor and events that happen there is told by several narrators. It comes to the attention of archivist Elodie Winslow, when she finds a leather satchel. Inside are two items that at first appear unrelated. One is a sepia photograph of a woman in Victorian clothing. The other is an artist’s sketchbook that contains a drawing of a twin-gabled house on the bend of a river. It seems familiar somehow to Elodie and reminds her of a story her mother told her a 4 and a half starsThis story of Birchwood Manor and events that happen there is told by several narrators. It comes to the attention of archivist Elodie Winslow, when she finds a leather satchel. Inside are two items that at first appear unrelated. One is a sepia photograph of a woman in Victorian clothing. The other is an artist’s sketchbook that contains a drawing of a twin-gabled house on the bend of a river. It seems familiar somehow to Elodie and reminds her of a story her mother told her as a child. But who is the stunning woman in the photo and what does she have to do with the house and the artist? As the different voices tell their story, the truth gradually emerges. And the reader gets to hear the voice of Birdie Bell who saw the dramatic events unfold.I was so looking forward to reading this book as I have enjoyed other Kate Morton books. I was lucky enough to win an uncorrected proof copy from the publisher. My thanks go to Allen&Unwin. Almost as soon as it arrived, I put aside other books piled up on the coffee table to start this one. I was not disappointed. I started in without reading the blurb or the author’s note at the front, as I wanted to go into it without knowing too much of the story beforehand. I’d suggest this may be the best way to read it. At over 600 pages it is quite a long read, but it didn’t bother me as there was enough happening to keep my interest. Usually I am not too keen on books with ghosts and spirits etc. but this book, with its voice outside of time, got me in. I found the characters interesting, descriptions beautiful and the mystery of what really happened kept me turning pages. At times it was a little unsettling as it switched narrators and time frames regularly, but I was never bored. It always piqued my interest enough to keep reading. An entertaining read that captures the imagination and should delight those who like historical novels, mysteries about an old house and a precious heirloom, and especially Kate Morton fans.
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  • Brenda
    January 1, 1970
    It was 2017 in London when archivist Elodie Winslow discovered an old but beautiful leather satchel which, on inspection, contained a photograph of a woman in Victorian clothing, and a sketchbook with detailed artwork, including a house by a river. She had no idea why the two items felt so special to her, even making her feel like she was familiar with the house, but Elodie knew she had to find out more.In 1862, a small group of friends, including artist and owner Edward Radcliffe, descended on It was 2017 in London when archivist Elodie Winslow discovered an old but beautiful leather satchel which, on inspection, contained a photograph of a woman in Victorian clothing, and a sketchbook with detailed artwork, including a house by a river. She had no idea why the two items felt so special to her, even making her feel like she was familiar with the house, but Elodie knew she had to find out more.In 1862, a small group of friends, including artist and owner Edward Radcliffe, descended on Birchwood Manor for a summer of art and creativity. Edward was an artist just beginning to make his name – his muse a beautiful young woman who he declared he couldn’t paint without. But two weeks into their stay, disaster struck, and lives would be forever changed.The Clockmaker’s Daughter is a novel stretched over time; told in many voices at varying times during the 150-year timeslot, there are many stories within the story and the link is always there. Concentration is needed with a lot of characters to keep track of; when a new family was introduced, I wondered who they were – until once again, their connection was shown. I feel Aussie author Kate Morton has a winner in The Clockmaker’s Daughter, and although I feel it was a little long, it's an exceptional read. A thoroughly entertaining novel which I highly recommend.With thanks to Allen & Unwin for my ARC to read in exchange for my honest review.
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  • Pauline
    January 1, 1970
    The Clockmaker’s Daughter by Kate Morton is about a murder in the summer of 1862 and in present day a young lady trying to make sense of of the mystery. I enjoy reading this author's books but this story was a little slow for me and didn't have the charm of her previous books. I would like to thank NetGalley and Pan McMillan for my e-copy in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Selena
    January 1, 1970
    I received a free copy of The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton from Goodreads for my honest review.I was so excited to win this book as I love Kate Morton. The Lake House is exquisite. With The Clockmaker's Daughter is a beautifully written ghost story that intertwines different time periods and a lot of different characters. The main character being, the clockmaker's daughter. The house, Birchwood Manor, which is located on the bank of the Thames, becomes a central character as well. You wi I received a free copy of The Clockmaker's Daughter by Kate Morton from Goodreads for my honest review.I was so excited to win this book as I love Kate Morton. The Lake House is exquisite. With The Clockmaker's Daughter is a beautifully written ghost story that intertwines different time periods and a lot of different characters. The main character being, the clockmaker's daughter. The house, Birchwood Manor, which is located on the bank of the Thames, becomes a central character as well. You will fall in love with the characters in this book and the wonderful story line which will bring you tons of surprises. The time periods change over a two hundred year span. I will say that you need to pay close attention to all the characters as there are a lot of them and it can get confusing and frustrating. A very detailed and beautiful read as with all Kate Morton's books. So dig in . . .
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  • Erin Clemence
    January 1, 1970
    Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Kate Morton returns with her new novel, “The Clockmaker’s Daughter”. Of course, being Kate Morton, she delights a reader with powerful, descriptive imagery and settings, a creative plot and beautiful language, as she spins a delightful historical tale. In 1862, a group of young people take up residence in “Birchwood Manor”, in hopes of spending the summer creating art and e Thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for a free, electronic ARC of this novel received in exchange for an honest review. Kate Morton returns with her new novel, “The Clockmaker’s Daughter”. Of course, being Kate Morton, she delights a reader with powerful, descriptive imagery and settings, a creative plot and beautiful language, as she spins a delightful historical tale. In 1862, a group of young people take up residence in “Birchwood Manor”, in hopes of spending the summer creating art and enjoying the beautiful grounds. When a woman is shot, the groups’ dreams are quickly destroyed, and the owner of the house, Edward Radcliffe, flees the country a broken man. Years later, archivist Elodie Winslow comes across a leather satchel containing two very different items- a sepia photograph of a beautiful woman, and a sketchbook. Both the picture and sketchbook seem to have different owners (and be from different time periods in history), yet they also have eerie similarities. Soon, Elodie is traveling to Birchwood Manor to investigate, where she too, is soon taken under the spell of the beautiful and mysterious house. This novel, as with all of Kate Morton’s novels, was a beautiful read. Long as it is, it was not difficult to read and I breezed through it, fully captivated as always by Morton’s breathtaking settings. “The Clockmaker’s Daughter” is not a fitting title, though. Although indeed, the Clockmaker’s Daughter is one of the characters in this novel, it seems to be more a tale about the house itself than an individual person. Told from many time periods, from many different characters, in reverse order, it was a bit confusing in places. Although each chapter was labeled with a date to identify time periods, there was multiple characters that each had diverse and entertaining storylines tied to Birchwood Manor itself. As mentioned, the character list in this novel is multitudinous, but each character brings their own set of charm to the table. The plot, too, has everything one could want- history, romance (many times over), a murder mystery, and even a treasure hunt. “The Clockmaker’s Daughter” had so many plots, it could have been many stories instead of just one, however this also made the novel easy to read. Fans of Morton will enjoy “The Clockmaker’s Daughter”, for its traditional Morton style and beauty. The ending is extremely satisfying, if not predictable, and brings the tale to a delightful end. A thoroughly engaging read, to be sure.
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  • Donna
    January 1, 1970
    First of all, I want to say that I am a HUGE Kate Morton fan. I have loved pretty much every book she has written, and I have recommended her books to so many people. That said, The Clockmaker's Daughter is a major disappointment. I could barely finish it and only kept going because it was Kate Morton, and I was sure it would get better. It didn't.There are far too many characters to keep track of in this story, and there are at least four or five different time periods that you are randomly whi First of all, I want to say that I am a HUGE Kate Morton fan. I have loved pretty much every book she has written, and I have recommended her books to so many people. That said, The Clockmaker's Daughter is a major disappointment. I could barely finish it and only kept going because it was Kate Morton, and I was sure it would get better. It didn't.There are far too many characters to keep track of in this story, and there are at least four or five different time periods that you are randomly whipped to and from. There were so many times reading this book where I had to stop and think "Wait...who is this person again?" or "Where are we now?"The bigger problem is that, unlike Morton's previous books, I didn't really care about the mystery at the center of the story all that much. And the shocking reveals that are at the heart of so many of Morton's books were not all that shocking at all. I guess Morton has become so successful that her publisher thinks she doesn't need editing. But a firm editor is exactly what this book needed. Well, here's hoping her next book is a return to form.
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  • Nadia
    January 1, 1970
    This is a very challenging book to review. It was brilliant in places, captivating, beautifully written and full of interesting characters, but... it was waaaay too long. The main premise of the book is actually an interesting one, once we finally get to it! There are so many side stories and supporting characters that for more than one third of the book I was convinced I was reading a different story to the one described in the synopsis. The story can be a bit confusing and feel disjointed as i This is a very challenging book to review. It was brilliant in places, captivating, beautifully written and full of interesting characters, but... it was waaaay too long. The main premise of the book is actually an interesting one, once we finally get to it! There are so many side stories and supporting characters that for more than one third of the book I was convinced I was reading a different story to the one described in the synopsis. The story can be a bit confusing and feel disjointed as it is told from several points of view and in different time periods. Also, there are a significant number of characters in the book and I really struggled at times to remember who was who and how did they fit into the story. I think this could be a five star book if it lost half of its volume, and re-focused on the main storylines and some of the characters.Many thanks to NetGalley and the publisher for my ARC in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Elizabeth of Silver's Reviews
    January 1, 1970
    FULL REVIEW WILL BE ON OCTOBER 9."An old house, an old sketch book, an old murder, an old photograph, and a lot of mysteries. Who doesn’t love all of those?THE CLOCKMAKER’S DAUGHTER has it all. I do have to say despite the brilliant ending and marvelous story line, the book was difficult to follow, but it all worked out in the end.Anyone who loves Kate Morton, who likes to unravel a book's story line, and who can wait until it all comes together will not want to miss reading THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAU FULL REVIEW WILL BE ON OCTOBER 9."An old house, an old sketch book, an old murder, an old photograph, and a lot of mysteries. Who doesn’t love all of those?

THE CLOCKMAKER’S DAUGHTER has it all. 

I do have to say despite the brilliant ending and marvelous story line, the book was difficult to follow, but it all worked out in the end.Anyone who loves Kate Morton, who likes to unravel a book's story line, and who can wait until it all comes together will not want to miss reading THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER. 4/5The book was given to me as an ARC. All opinions are my own."
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  • Diane S ☔
    January 1, 1970
    Review soon.
  • Christie«SHBBblogger»
    January 1, 1970
    Title: The Clockmaker's DaughterSeries: StandaloneAuthor: Kate MortonRelease date: October 9, 2018Cliffhanger: No“Down the winding lane and across the meadow broad, to the river they went with their secrets and their sword . . .”Kate Morton is a master storyteller with the ability to draw out each character equally in exquisitely fine detail. Each person's heartaches, and soul searching moments were bound together within the walls of an enchanting house straight out of a fairy tale. The event t Title: The Clockmaker's DaughterSeries: StandaloneAuthor: Kate MortonRelease date: October 9, 2018Cliffhanger: No“Down the winding lane and across the meadow broad, to the river they went with their secrets and their sword . . .”Kate Morton is a master storyteller with the ability to draw out each character equally in exquisitely fine detail. Each person's heartaches, and soul searching moments were bound together within the walls of an enchanting house straight out of a fairy tale. The event that occurred at Birchwood Manor is an unsolved mystery with many fine strands expertly twined together at the end. She lays out extensive history of the inhabitants and visitors, as well as slowly revealing one narrator's own involvement at the center of it all. I was extremely impressed with the originality of this timeless woman's delivery of the sad tale through her all-seeing knowledge. I can honestly say I've never read a POV quite like hers before. I am aware that the sun continues to rise and set and the moon to take its place, but I no longer feel its passage. Past, present, and future are meaningless; I am outside time. Here and there, and there and here, at once.Over 150 years, speculation has swelled over the murder of one woman, and the disappearance of another. Interest in the whereabouts of Edward Radcliffe’s last rumored painting of his muse, Lily Millington, and the priceless Radcliffe Blue continued to linger. After all, who can resist a tragic love story that involves missing treasure? It seemed there were no clues besides some vague police theories, and the case had long gone ice cold. Until an archivist named Elodie Winslow discovered a leather satchel with a beautiful woman's photo, and Edward's sketchbook. Could this be the mysterious woman he became obsessed with before his life was shattered? How were they connected to James Stratton, the man who once owned the leather satchel? Elodie is a woman who makes a career out of finding the forgotten story in antiques, and making diligent records of them. But there is something beyond her average interest in these items. An instant fascination and magnetic pull to a sketch found inside his book, and an almost desperate need to answer all of her questions about the events of 1862. Engaged to be married, it's quite possibly the worst time to turn her focus to this mystery. Truths are suddenly being unearthed about the passing about her own mother, and the circumstances surrounding the time of her death. She's feeling confused and more than a little lost as her emotions are getting stirred at uncomfortable levels. But she simply cannot let the matter rest, and what she discovers will have a surprising personal impact. I really felt for Elodie as she navigated through her conflicted feelings about her family, and the blow of some uncomfortable secrets that eventually came to light. Initially, I actually thought that her POV would be the main focus in the book, but that wasn't the case. The many varied POVs were spaced out with equal attention, escorting you through time slowly at first. Until finally, the meander became a ragged sprint that leaves you breathless in the last chapters. Edward and Lily's love story was what I was most looking forward to reading about. Even knowing they would ultimately suffer a cruel fate, I wanted that peek into their happy time when their world was full of light and promise. And boy, they did not disappoint. Their emotions for each other were beautifully written, and some of my absolute favorite parts of Kate Morton's crafting of this story. Edward's adoration of her bled through the pages, and made their stories that much more important to solve. At times, I was impatient to get to their parts, and the pace dragged from my impatience. There was a definite melancholy air to much of the book, and a feeling of impending doom. But in those brief moments when you see their love blossom, they are the sweetest bouquet waiting to bloom. There is a sureness— a pride even— to the set of her lips, that is breathtaking. She is breathtaking. Now that I have seen her, anyone else would be an imposter. She is truth; truth is beauty; and beauty is divine.”The mystery of the book held me enthralled throughout. There were some things that I caught onto, and others that took me completely by surprise as everything was finally revealed. My suspicions about Uncle Tip and his mother's story at Birchwood was partially confirmed, but there were several unpredictable details I loved that clicked each of the puzzle together seamlessly. I loved the ethereal quality to the manor, and how it was almost a character in and of itself. How its beauty brought comfort and peace to so many despite bringing devastation to the Radcliffes. I must admit, the ending felt pretty abrupt to me, and I attempted to turn the last page to see if there was more to be told. It was a little bit of a let down to not be shown Elodie and Jack's impending discovery even though it's obvious what was about to transpire. I wanted to be able to see it! All in all, I fell in love with Kate Morton's eloquent writing. The Clockmaker's Daughter was a many layered, beautifully expressed, character driven story. I'm really looking forward to reading more from her in the future. FOLLOW SMOKIN HOT BOOK BLOG ON:
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  • Susan
    January 1, 1970
    I'm a big Kate Morton fan, so I've been waiting with bated breath for her newest to come out. I was fortunate to get an early copy (thanks, Netgalley!) of THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER, which I enjoyed. Maybe not as much as Morton's others, but I still really liked it.The book has a slightly different format than Morton's other novels, although it's similar in theme and style. Although it has a number of different narrators, the star of this story really is Birchwood Manor, an old house in the woods I'm a big Kate Morton fan, so I've been waiting with bated breath for her newest to come out. I was fortunate to get an early copy (thanks, Netgalley!) of THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER, which I enjoyed. Maybe not as much as Morton's others, but I still really liked it.The book has a slightly different format than Morton's other novels, although it's similar in theme and style. Although it has a number of different narrators, the star of this story really is Birchwood Manor, an old house in the woods which seems to call certain people to its doors. I enjoyed learning its history through its different inhabitants, who all have their own struggles and stories. The mystery at the novel's core is almost a minor plot line, which was fine since I didn't find it ALL that compelling anyway (although I was surprised by how it played out). While this book felt a little less focused and intriguing than Morton's other books, I still had a hard time putting it down. This might be my least favorite Morton novel, in fact, and yet I liked it. Truth of the matter is, I would read an essay on how grass grows if Morton wrote it. She's one of my all-time favorite writers.
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  • Suzanne
    January 1, 1970
    This is the first Kate Morton book I've read so maybe people who are fans of her previous books will enjoy it more. I'm often drawn to books which move between time periods and like seeing how the different characters end up connected. It's intriguing to see the line stretching across time between people as the result of the actions they take. However, with this book, there were so many characters and so many time periods to keep track of! I read one review where the reader had created a chart t This is the first Kate Morton book I've read so maybe people who are fans of her previous books will enjoy it more. I'm often drawn to books which move between time periods and like seeing how the different characters end up connected. It's intriguing to see the line stretching across time between people as the result of the actions they take. However, with this book, there were so many characters and so many time periods to keep track of! I read one review where the reader had created a chart to try and keep everyone straight and I found myself trying to do the same thing mentally - not a good sign. The story meandered along with a few twists here and there to keep you hooked, but ultimately was not very engaging. Disappointed this one wasn't more enjoyable for me as I loved both the cover and the story premise.
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  • Theresa Smith Writes
    January 1, 1970
    ‘As he looked at her, and she looked at the house, something in the way the leaves of the maple caught the sun and illuminated the woman beneath it made his heart ache and expand, and he realised that he wanted to tell her, too, that by some strange twist it was the very meaninglessness of life that made it all so beautiful and rare and wonderful. That for all its savagery – because of its savagery – war had brightened every colour. That without the darkness one would never notice the stars.’The ‘As he looked at her, and she looked at the house, something in the way the leaves of the maple caught the sun and illuminated the woman beneath it made his heart ache and expand, and he realised that he wanted to tell her, too, that by some strange twist it was the very meaninglessness of life that made it all so beautiful and rare and wonderful. That for all its savagery – because of its savagery – war had brightened every colour. That without the darkness one would never notice the stars.’There’s been a lot of anticipation for The Clockmaker’s Daughter, as there always is for any new novel by Kate Morton. They are far too long and extensive to come out once a year, so it’s usually heading towards the two year mark between reads, ramping up that anticipation even higher. I have read and loved all of Kate’s novels, right since her first was released. I know I’m guaranteed a good read. But The Clockmaker’s Daughter is at a whole new level of storytelling, even for Kate. It is a magnificent novel. There are so many words I could use, but then I would just be drivelling, and no one wants that. Kate’s normal mode of storytelling is to use a dual timeline, one voice set in the past, another in the more modern day. With The Clockmaker’s Daughter, she has surpassed this style of dual timeline in favour of using multiple voices, spread over multiple eras; a collection of stories within a story, with a four hundred year old house and a mystery as the connecting web between each person. It’s ambitious, epic in scope, and one of the best novels I have ever read.‘There was a single likeness, a small sketch, that he kept inside a gold locket, and which I treasured. Until, that is, we were forced to move into the pair of draughty rooms in the pinched alleyway in a pocket of East London, where the smell of the Thames was always in our noses and the calls of gulls and sailors mingled to form a constant song, and the locket disappeared to the rag-and-bone man. I do not know where the likeness went. It slipped through the cracks of time and went to where the lost things are.’In terms of historical fiction, Victorian London is a time and place I have always been drawn to. It’s Dickensish of me, I know, but I love the grim atmospheric tones and the social history of that time. Depressing, but anyway, that’s me. Birdie, our mysterious main character who I intend to leave as a mystery for you even in this review, is from this era. She is a poor Victorian orphan child. Kate brings Birdie’s world to life with such vividness, the terrible things that were done to children, the harshness of life for everyone who was less than middle class. And the yearning for more, the thirst for knowledge, the quest for creative freedom; a society on the cusp of so much, which is what I’ve always loved about the era. The juxtaposition of poverty and progress. This world was recreated with such a deft hand, it was truly wonderful.‘The Thames here had a vastly different character to the wide, muddy tyrant that seethed through London. It was graceful and deft and remarkably light of heart. It skipped over stones and skimmed its banks, water so clear that one could see reeds swaying deep down on her narrow bed. The river here was a she, he’d decided. For all its sunlit transparency, there were certain spots in which it was suddenly unfathomable.’Kate has a certain way with words though, where with a single turn of phrase, she can turn the ordinary onto its head. I have included quite a number of quotes in this review, because over and over, there are these moments that are so profoundly moving. Images conjured up so vividly, the type of storytelling that is rare and precious.‘Ada tore open the package to find a small black leather book inside. Between its covers were no words, but instead page after page of pressed flowers: orange hibiscus, mauve queen’s crepe myrtle, purple passion flower, white spider lilies, red powder puffs. All of them, Ada knew, had come from her very own garden, and in an instant she was back in Bombay. She could feel the sultry air on her face, smell the heady fragrance of summer, hear the songs of prayer as the sun set over the ocean.’As I mentioned above, this novel is told through multiple voices. The character list is extensive, because within each era’s story, their is a full cast of varying people. I adored Elodie, our main character in the present day. The way she lived and breathed history, seeing it in all of her everyday moments. Her career was like my dream come true! But it would be so hard to pick a favourite, to have preferred one era over another, because each was unique, and each contained the soul of a person who had been profoundly influenced by the house and its mystery. The serendipitous moments that stretch across time within this story are delectable. As I got further and further in, each one of these moments gave me goosebumps as they were revealed. Master storyteller does not even come close.‘They all have a story, the ones to whom I am drawn. Each one is different from those who came before, but there has been something at the heart of each visitor, a loss that ties them together. I have come to understand that loss leaves a hole in a person and that holes like to be filled. It is the natural order. They are always the ones most likely to hear me when I speak…and, every so often, when I get really lucky, one of them answers back.’Many early reviewers are calling The Clockmaker’s Daughter Kate Morton’s best novel yet. Do I agree with this? Most definitely. Despite its size, nearing 700 pages, I devoured it over a weekend, Friday evening through to Sunday afternoon. It was impossible to put down for any length of time. And while reading it, I was utterly closed to the world, it’s that kind of absorbing.‘There was a lot that Juliet would have liked to say. It was one of those occasions that came rarely, in which a parent recognised that what she said next would remain with her child forever. She so wanted to be equal to it. She was a writer and yet the right words would not come. Every explanation that she considered and discarded put another beat of silence between the perfect moment for response and the moment that she was now in.’As to the mystery. It doesn’t disappoint. And the only hint I’m willing to give is to say that The Clockmaker’s Daughter is gothic historical fiction. You draw what conclusions you like from that!‘And as my name, my life, my history, was buried, I, who had once dreamed of capturing light, found that I had become captured light itself.’Thanks is extended to Allen & Unwin for providing me with a copy of The Clockmaker’s Daughter for review.
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  • Lauren Jenkins
    January 1, 1970
    Soooooooo good! ⭐⭐⭐⭐I wish Kate Morton existed in a world set adjacent to us where she operated at 2x speed and we would have new books from her twice as often.The Clockmaker's Daughter is special. The intricacies of the story weave tangled tales that intersect and come together in a very satisfying way. I'm inspired now to go back and re-read all Kate's previous novels. Soooooooo good! ⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️I wish Kate Morton existed in a world set adjacent to us where she operated at 2x speed and we would have new books from her twice as often.The Clockmaker's Daughter is special. The intricacies of the story weave tangled tales that intersect and come together in a very satisfying way. I'm inspired now to go back and re-read all Kate's previous novels.
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  • Marianne
    January 1, 1970
    4.5★sThe Clockmaker’s Daughter is the sixth novel by Australian author, Kate Morton. When bank archivist Elodie Winslow opens a long-forgotten box, she’s fascinated by the contents, in particular a leather satchel containing a sketch book and a photograph of a beautiful young woman. While it should relate somehow to the founder of Stratton, Cadwell & Co., James Stratton, it is apparent that some items belonged to nineteenth-century-artist, Edward Radcliffe. But one sketch especially resonate 4.5★sThe Clockmaker’s Daughter is the sixth novel by Australian author, Kate Morton. When bank archivist Elodie Winslow opens a long-forgotten box, she’s fascinated by the contents, in particular a leather satchel containing a sketch book and a photograph of a beautiful young woman. While it should relate somehow to the founder of Stratton, Cadwell & Co., James Stratton, it is apparent that some items belonged to nineteenth-century-artist, Edward Radcliffe. But one sketch especially resonates with Elodie: she’s convinced it is the place of her mother’s bedtime stories.Edward had purchased Birchwood Manor because he felt a strong connection with the place. The plan had been for the Magenta brotherhood to spend the summer of 1862 there, engaged in artistic pursuits. But the intruder who shot and killed Edward’s fiancée, Fanny Brown, had put a premature end to that. Edward's utter devastation was to be expected after such a tragedy. The precious Radcliffe Blue was now missing, and the Police report implicated Edward’s most recent model, a woman going by the name of Lily Millington, but not everyone believed that version of events. What really happened? And did it have anything to do with the satchel, the sketch book and the photograph that Elodie had found?Morton's latest offering weaves the stories of many characters, in the form of anecdotes, vignettes or short stories in themselves, together into one epic tale that spans over a hundred and fifty years, and that ultimately reveals the answers to mysteries and connections, to each other, and to the house. Such an epic needs many narrators, so the cast is not small, even including a ghost, and yet there are often barely a few degrees of separation between them. Morton does tend to use coincidence, which can occasionally make the final reveal seem contrived, but readers familiar with her work will be aware of what to expect.There is no lack of parallels between the lives of various characters and while it is easy to hope for the best for those whose stories are told, some (Ada, Lucy, Winston) hold particular appeal and, for most readers, young Tip will be the stand-out favourite. There are some suitably nasty characters as well, one whose idea of friendship leaves much to be desired. This is a story with twists and red herrings, with grief and guilt, with theft and treasure and hidden spaces, with love of many sorts and a heart-warming ending. Classic Kate Morton.This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by Allen & Unwin.
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  • Lindsey Gandhi
    January 1, 1970
    After reading The Secret Keeper I became a huge Kate Morton fan. When I saw she had a new book coming out I just had to get my hands on it. And as with The Secret Keeper, she does not disappoint in The Clockmaker's Daughter."People value shiny stones and lucky charms, but they forget that the most powerful talismans of all are the stories we tell to ourselves and to others."Kate Morton is a beautiful, gifted and magical storyteller. She mixes romance, mystery and murder in an incredible historic After reading The Secret Keeper I became a huge Kate Morton fan. When I saw she had a new book coming out I just had to get my hands on it. And as with The Secret Keeper, she does not disappoint in The Clockmaker's Daughter."People value shiny stones and lucky charms, but they forget that the most powerful talismans of all are the stories we tell to ourselves and to others."Kate Morton is a beautiful, gifted and magical storyteller. She mixes romance, mystery and murder in an incredible historic setting that dances across decades to make a magnificent novel. She writes the story using multiple voices over multiple time frames, yet she ties them all together with a single thread that doesn't fully materialize until the end. (Which makes you not want to put the book down). While the heart of this novel is a breath taking love story, all the additional elements she includes (a murder, a mystery, a huge cast of characters) makes this a profoundly moving and captivating novel to read. Kate Morton has one of the most beautiful prose of any author I've read. I just drank in this novel and walked away feeling I had an intimate connection with many of the characters. I am in awe at how she was able to weave their storylines so tightly together. It's brilliant!!!!!!My thanks to Kate Morton, Atria Books and Netgalley for a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Lorri Steinbacher
    January 1, 1970
    Due out in October, this hits all the Morton sweet spots: mouldering Victorian mansion, a story that shifts back and forth in time, secrets and lies, a mystery that unspools with gorgeous prose and unforgettable characters. Add to that formula a brooding, brilliant artist (in the 1860's) and a young archivist about to enter into an ill-advised marriage and you have the perfect summer read for historical fiction fans. Highly recommended.
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  • Paula Sealey
    January 1, 1970
    What a wonderful story! This book held me captive with its involving plot, richly described settings and wonderful characters. I can only guess at the amount of work Kate Morton put into this story, which deftly brings a myriad of characters together to solve the mystery of what happened at Birchwood Manor some 150 years ago. It is not a quick read by any means. With different settings and time leaps you do need to stay on the ball, but I loved it, and towards the end I read ferociously to reach What a wonderful story! This book held me captive with its involving plot, richly described settings and wonderful characters. I can only guess at the amount of work Kate Morton put into this story, which deftly brings a myriad of characters together to solve the mystery of what happened at Birchwood Manor some 150 years ago. It is not a quick read by any means. With different settings and time leaps you do need to stay on the ball, but I loved it, and towards the end I read ferociously to reach the conclusion, which bought all the threads of the tale together neatly. 4.5 glowing stars from me!*I received a copy of the book from the publisher via NetGalley in exchange for an honest review.
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  • Natasha Lester
    January 1, 1970
    One of her best books. Loved it.
  • Liviu
    January 1, 1970
    This is a hard novel to review as on the one hand it has the most beautiful prose of the author's novels while on the other hand it is the least "Kate Morton" like book in terms of execution, so I greatly enjoyed it in itself as a wonderful fantasy with both contemporary and historical sections (didn't count but I estimate about half the book is narrated by a ghost - as it is fairly obvious after the first few pages that the title character is such) but I was also a bit taken aback as I expected This is a hard novel to review as on the one hand it has the most beautiful prose of the author's novels while on the other hand it is the least "Kate Morton" like book in terms of execution, so I greatly enjoyed it in itself as a wonderful fantasy with both contemporary and historical sections (didn't count but I estimate about half the book is narrated by a ghost - as it is fairly obvious after the first few pages that the title character is such) but I was also a bit taken aback as I expected a different novel in some ways. In her previous novels (with The Secret Keeper as the best but all excellent) the author's characters secrets and the twists and turns revealed slowly until the final "can't believe this" were the main draw, while here those are more diluted and telegraphed (yes there is a surprise here and there especially in the boarding school part) but overall most of what happened is less twisty so to speak, so the main draw of the novel is the prose and atmosphere - the structure of the novel as more of a series of interconnected short stories with characters passing the baton to one another so to speak and the powerful fantasy elements are part of the draw too; if there is a weakness, the contemporary part with Elodie starts strong but then kind of loses focus as it becomes the least well connected part of the chainOverall a superb piece of fantasy with both contemporary and historical elements and quite highly recommended but the least Kate Morton book of the author so to speak
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  • Cathy
    January 1, 1970
    The Clockmaker’s Daughter switches frequently between different time periods and points of view, some of the latter being introduced for the first time quite a long way into the book.  The first person narrator referred to in the book description as ‘a woman who stands outside time’ may require the willing suspension of disbelief by some readers; others will find it intriguing and inventive.  I enjoyed this narrator’s mischievous nature whilst at the same time feeling an empathy with her evident The Clockmaker’s Daughter switches frequently between different time periods and points of view, some of the latter being introduced for the first time quite a long way into the book.  The first person narrator referred to in the book description as ‘a woman who stands outside time’ may require the willing suspension of disbelief by some readers; others will find it intriguing and inventive.  I enjoyed this narrator’s mischievous nature whilst at the same time feeling an empathy with her evident underlying sadness.   In the depiction of the group of friends who arrive at Birchwood Manor in 1862, the author conveys the insular atmosphere of an artistic community, full of petty rivalries and jealousies.  (I was reminded of Agatha Christie’s Hercule Poirot mystery, Five Little Pigs, and Ngaio Marsh’s Inspector Alleyn novel, Artists in Crime.)  There’s a sense of simmering discontent that may boil over at any moment.  When it does, it’s in a quite unexpected way and with far-reaching consequences .Appropriately given its title, the book makes frequent reference to the passing of time. ‘There was no going back. Time only moved in one direction.  And it didn’t stop.  It never stopped moving, not even to let a person think.  The only way back was in one’s memories.’  Timing devices have significance as well.  At one point, a character remarks, ‘There was no clock inside the studio.  There was no time.’  Another character recalls a grandfather clock whose ‘tick-tock’ sounded louder at night, ‘counting down the minutes, though to what he was never sure; there never seemed to be an end’.  The book also explores the idea of a sense of place, epitomized by Birchwood Manor which sits at the centre of a web connecting it to the different characters to varying degrees.  The melding of past and present is another recurrent theme.   For example, the book refers to a character entering the house and feeling that they were ‘stepping back in time’.  At another point, Birchwood Manor is described as being like ‘a Sleeping Beauty house’ as if just waiting for someone to reawaken it.   From my point of view, The Clockmaker’s Daughter marks a return to form for Kate Morton as I really liked The Secret Keeper but didn’t get on at all with The Distant Hours (which is still, I’m afraid, sitting unfinished on my bookshelf).  Although the author has delivered another chunky book and the multiple timelines and points of view demand a good deal of concentration from the reader (a few more reminders of the time period in the chapter headings would have helped), it has a great sense of atmosphere and the unfolding of the mystery is skillfully intertwined with the stories of the various characters.   Edward Radcliffe’s sister, Lucy, observes at one point, ‘a story is not a single idea; it is thousands of ideas, all working together in concert’.  There are certainly a lot of different ideas and narrative strands in The Clockmaker’s Daughter but, on the whole, I believe they do all work together in concert to create a satisfying read (perfect for autumn/winter nights, by the way).
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  • Erika Robuck
    January 1, 1970
    A 'book hangover' is a condition resulting in an inability to begin a new book because one is so absorbed by the last. THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER has given me a terrible case, and I don't see an end in sight.Kate Morton is the master of the multi-period mystery. Every time I pick up one of her novels, I'm eager to see if she'll be able to weave her magic, and every time she succeeds. Morton knows her characters so intimately, the reader is safe in her capable hands to explore the mazes of time an A 'book hangover' is a condition resulting in an inability to begin a new book because one is so absorbed by the last. THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER has given me a terrible case, and I don't see an end in sight.Kate Morton is the master of the multi-period mystery. Every time I pick up one of her novels, I'm eager to see if she'll be able to weave her magic, and every time she succeeds. Morton knows her characters so intimately, the reader is safe in her capable hands to explore the mazes of time and place without getting lost. It is her deep empathy for the human condition that allows her to create such full, memorable worlds.In THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER, each time I thought I found my favorite storyline, the next section would come and I'd think I'd again found it. Over and over this went, until the sad moment when I reached the last page. I did not want the book to end, and that is saying a lot for a nearly five-hundred page novel. From fans of historical fiction to multi-period drama to mystery, Kate Morton's novels are for book lovers of all genres. I caution you, however: THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER is so absorbing, you'll get very little done once you start. Even with that word of warning and in spite of the fact that it will leave you with a book hangover, I give THE CLOCKMAKER'S DAUGHTER my highest recommendation.
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