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The House at Riverton by Kate Morton
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The House at Riverton (2006)

by Kate Morton

Other authors: See the other authors section.

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3,5251861,498 (3.86)290
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    kitzyl: There is a passage in The Shifting Fog which describes the relationship between Hannah and Emmeline as a "string that bends, it will eventually snap and the points will separate; if elastic, they will continue to part, further and further, until the strain reaches its limits and they are pulled back with such speed that they cannot help but collide with devastating force." In The Dark-Adapted Eye, the sisters are Vera and Eden whose inexplicably interdependent-but-destructive relationship embody the aforementioned elastic string. The story is told from the perspective of their niece who accompanies the reader on the events leading up to the devastation.… (more)
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» See also 290 mentions

English (172)  Spanish (4)  Norwegian (3)  Dutch (2)  German (2)  Finnish (1)  Danish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (186)
Showing 1-5 of 172 (next | show all)
Set between WWI and WWII, the story is about an aristocratic family, the house they lived in, a mysterious death, and a way of life no longer in existence. Grace is now 98 and is living in a nursing home. A young director comes to visit her and tells her that she is directing a film about the house. Through flashbacks, Grace tells the tale. (At times the switch to present time/past is not clear.) ( )
  creighley | Jun 18, 2015 |
I found the illustration of the period to be the most interesting. The characters are realistically drawn in their hopes and expectations, missteps and mistakes. This reader recognized many of the life changing mistakes as they occurred, without necessarily knowing the way in which they would prove themselves. It is a cautionary tale, with some sympathetic characters and some you would like to know better. It is a story that lends itself to further consideration at its conclusion... is there any way it might have turned out differently?
  dBabbp | May 18, 2015 |
Exceptionally melancholy, but a good read. ( )
  dele2451 | Apr 10, 2015 |
Normally, shifts in time in a book will drive me crazy, however, Kate Morton manages to always make this process work for me.

The reader is introduced to Dr. Grace Bradley, an archaeologist, spending the remainder of her years in a nursing home. She has been contacted by movie producers who want her opinion of their sets for a movie they are making set at Riverton, a manor house where Grace had worked as a housemaid when she was very young. The sets bring memories flooding back to Grace telling the story of the Hampton sisters and the tragedies that befell the residents of Riverton.

As the story progresses we see Grace battling with her memories as well as trying to find a way to reveal the secrets of her life before her end.

One of my favorite authors with a great story. ( )
  cyderry | Mar 27, 2015 |
I seem to really enjoy stories that flip back and forth from the past to present day. This one was an example of that. Grace, a servant as her mother before her and lady's maid to Hannah. The story gives us the back drop of the early 1900's and leading up to the suicide of a young aspiring poet at Riverton which in present day is under production by a young woman who is seeking Grace's insight of the time she was in service at Riverton. Grace now nearing 100 yrs old is the only one left to share her knowledge. She has kept secrets, lots of secrets. As the story unfolds, we learn her relationship to the family, the consequences of the war, lies and the secrets that bind a servant to her lady. The mystery unfolds, although, it takes a long time it seems, the story is very descriptive and you can definitely walk with the characters as they grow up. However, I am never brought to tears, although there is more sadness to this story than happiness. I do think there is a sequel, that is waiting to be told! ( )
  booklovers2 | Feb 28, 2015 |
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» Add other authors (21 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Kate Mortonprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Fernández Jiménez, DavidTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Lee, CarolineNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
Middelthon, Elisabet W.Translatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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Important events
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Epigraph
Dedication
For Davin, who holds my hand on the roller-coaster
First words
Last November I had a nightmare.
Quotations
Last words
(Click to show. Warning: May contain spoilers.)
Disambiguation notice
Originally published in Australia as "The Shifting Fog." Name changed to "The House at Riverton" for publication in the UK and US.
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Wikipedia in English (2)

Book description
A story of love, mystery, and a secret history revealed. Summer 1924. On the eve of a glittering society party, by the lake of a grand English country house, a young poet takes his life. The only witnesses, sisters Hannah and Emmeline Hartford, will never speak to each other again. Winter 1999. Grace Bradley, ninety-eight, one-time housemaid at Riverton Manor, is visited by a young director making a film about the poet's suicide. Ghosts awaken and old memories-long consigned to the dark reaches of Grace's mind-begin to sneak back through the cracks. A shocking secret threatens to emerge, something history has forgotten but Grace never could.
Haiku summary
Secrets aplenty
In the house at Riverton.
All will be revealed.
(passion4reading)

No descriptions found.

(see all 2 descriptions)

Grace Bradley went to work at Riverton House as a servant when she was just a girl, before the First World War. For years her life was inextricably tied up with the Hartford family, most particularly the two daughters, Hannah and Emmeline. In the summer of 1924, at a glittering society party held at the house, a young poet shot himself. The only witnesses were Hannah and Emmeline and only they--and Grace--know the truth. In 1999, when Grace is ninety-eight years old and living out her last days in a nursing home, she is visited by a young director who is making a film about the events of that summer. She takes Grace back to Riverton House and reawakens her memories--From publisher description.… (more)

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