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The Shifting Fog by Kate Morton

The Shifting Fog (original 2006; edition 2007)

by Kate Morton

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3,5881891,471 (3.85)292
Title:The Shifting Fog
Authors:Kate Morton
Info:Allen & Unwin (2007), Edition: First Thus, Print on Demand (Paperback), 551 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The House at Riverton by Kate Morton (2006)

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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 292 mentions

English (175)  Spanish (4)  Norwegian (3)  Dutch (2)  German (2)  Finnish (1)  Danish (1)  Portuguese (Portugal) (1)  All languages (189)
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
Good for escapism. ( )
  BooksOn23rd | Nov 25, 2015 |
A 98 year old woman looks back over a few years of turmoil in the aristocratic family that employed her as a housemaid, and the personal and societal changes that were brought about by the First World War. Although the outcome is clear from the start, the story is revealed bit by bit as she relives the past. The author does a good job of maintaining the suspense, and I always wanted to know what was going to happen next, even though I knew where it was going to end up. I even had a couple of surprises, which doesn't happen very often anymore. I will definitely read more by Kate Morton, but not right away. That would get too depressing. ( )
  SylviaC | Nov 24, 2015 |
I enjoyed the time period this story was set in, but I felt some aspects of the story were a bit derivative of other stories set in the same period. Or maybe I've just read and watched to many stories set in the same period. In particular I heard echoes of the British TV shows, Upstairs, Downstairs and Downton Abbey as well as Connie Willis' books, Blackout and All Clear.

I particularly liked the way the author drew out the mystery of what really happened at the lake, although overall the story was a bit on the long side. I also have no idea why the publisher chose an Australian narrator for a book set in England! ( )
  PerpetualRevision | Oct 25, 2015 |
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 |
Showing 1-5 of 175 (next | show all)
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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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For Davin, who holds my hand on the roller-coaster
First words
Last November I had a nightmare.
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.

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(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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