The Clockmaker's Daughter
By Kate Morton
The mesmerizing sixth novel from the bestselling author of The House at Riverton and The Lake House.Tweet
The story revolves around a house, Birchwood Manor, on the upper reaches of the Thames and moves back and forth between Victorian times, the present day and times-in-between (which can be rather confusing). In 2017 Elodie, an archivist, finds an old satchel at work and is intrigued by some sketches in it of a beautiful young woman – the Clockmake’rs Daughter. She discovers the artist had purchased Birchwood Manor in the 1860's and that he and his artist friends spent an idyllic summer there, until disaster struck. Elodie manages to find the manor and realises it is the same house that her mother told her stories about when she was young. Her mother died when she was small but finally Elodie finds the answer to what happened in 1862 and also discovers the circumstances surrounding her mother’s death. It is quite a complicated story, made even more complicated because it’s told in part by the ghost of the Clockmakers Daughter. There are lots of coincidences and it’s an interesting portrait of Victorian London but I didn’t enjoy this as much as some of Kate Morton's other books.
Kate Morton often sets her sagas in a house. This works well as residents weave their tales into the main narrative. This is a gentle story and the plot gradually unravels. The many characters add to the complexity yet all is finally revealed. I was slightly disappointed as I felt misled by the title of the book. I had hoped for more clockmaker!