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The Savage Garden by Mark Mills
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The Savage Garden (original 2007; edition 2008)

by Mark Mills

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1,2346610,345 (3.43)85
Set in Italy in 1958, 'The Savage Garden' is the story of two unsolved murders - one committed in the late Renaissance, the other in 1944, during the dying days of the German army's occupation.
Member:JohnEllard
Title:The Savage Garden
Authors:Mark Mills
Info:Berkley Trade (2008), Paperback, 352 pages
Collections:Your library
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The Savage Garden by Mark Mills (2007)

  1. 00
    The Forgotten Garden by Kate Morton (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: In each of these atmospheric novels tinged with all the best aspects of gothic novels -- old estates, family secrets, suspicious deaths -- a garden holds the answers the protagonists seek.
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Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
Interesting historical thriller with plenty of twists and turns on the way, as student Adam studies a garden at Villa Docci as part of his thesis. What at first sight appears a rather boring assignment takes on new meaning as Adam uncovers the screts, contemporary and historical of the Doccis. I spotted one anachronism, a comparison with velcro which wouldn't have been widely known or used in the 1950s! ( )
  edwardsgt | Apr 5, 2019 |
A mysterious death in 1548. Another in 1945, in the waning days of WWII in Europe. Both involve the Docci family and revolve around their Tuscan villa and its famous garden. This is a highly literate novel and a two-fer on the mystery front. The majority of the story takes place in 1958, and the more recent death takes primacy as a young Cambridge scholar looks into matters. Both plot lines and their resolutions are extremely interesting. Add a whole host of fascinating characters, a superb narrative, a fair amount of academia, and plenty of Italian history and mythology and you end up with almost everything that I look for in a compelling novel. A real gem. ( )
1 vote jimgysin | Jun 19, 2017 |
Fun mystery with all kinds of appeal - art history, WWI Italy, family intrigue, Dante, and a hint of Jane Eyre. Good twist to the plot - the end was a surprise. ( )
  laurenbufferd | Nov 14, 2016 |
Interesting mystery leavened with an antiquary garden puzzle to be solved. A WW2 murder may not have been done by the Nazis. ( )
  jamespurcell | Aug 27, 2016 |
3.5 stars - This was a great idea for a story, but the execution was lacking. Young English scholar Adam Strickland goes to Tuscany to write a thesis about the garden of the Docci family. He stumbles across two murders, one 400 years ago when the garden was designed, another more recent. I failed to see the connection between the two events, and I would have loved to explore the 16th century storyline a lot more. I liked the descriptions of the garden, the plot was intriguing and most of the characters were interesting and easy to imagine. Some knowledge of Dante's Divine Comedy and the myths and ledgends of Ancient Rome and Greece would be an advantage, it certainly added to my enjoyment. Unfortunately, sometimes the storyline seemed to go round in circles and there were some unnecessary hints and developments that never went anywhere. Overall, it was a good story, but could have been presented a lot better. ( )
  SabinaE | Jan 23, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 65 (next | show all)
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We shall not cease from exploration

And the end of all our exploring

Will be to arrive where we started

And know the place for the first time.

-- T.S. Eliot, "Little Gidding"

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For Caroline, Gus, and Rosie
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He was known, primarily, for his marrows.
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