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The Lake House


The Lake House

Detective Constable Sadie Sparrow has gotten herself into a spot of trouble with the Metropolitan Police, or at least she’s close to falling into it deep with her superiors. Her partner suggests that maybe she should take a holiday and see if the problem blows over. So off she goes to Cornwall to visit her granddad, Bertie. DC Sparrow is not one to sit idly by, though, so she finds herself wandering the countryside with Bertie’s dogs. That’s how she comes upon Loeanneth, the lake house that was once the happy home of the Edevane family. The parents, Anthony and Eleanor, have long been dead, as has their youngest daughter, Clementine. But the two eldest daughters, Alice and Deborah, who are old ladies now, live in London. Both have theories about what happened to their infant brother, Theo, during that Midsummer party nearly 70 years ago.

Sadie uses the Edevane mystery as a way to distract herself from the case that got her into hot water, another case involving a missing person, only this one the mother of a child. She could not believe a mother would simply walk away, leaving her daughter in uncertain circumstances. That’s precisely the sort of conviction that led Sadie to directly disobey orders. So finding out what happened to Theo many decades back becomes her new obsession. The boy’s disappearance had been so traumatic for the family that they closed up Loeanneth and moved to London, leaving the lake house a place frozen in time.

"Bravo, Kate Morton. You’ve penned a love story with such an incredible amount of suspense that readers won’t be able to put it down."

Sadie sees Loeanneth as the key to finding out what happened to baby Theo. Her curiosity leads her to the middle daughter, Alice, a bestselling crime novelist. Two women more different would be hard to find: Sadie, the police constable who doesn’t read, deals in facts and spends her time poking around other people’s lives, versus Alice, the very private writer who creates characters, plans crimes for them to commit and builds entirely made-up worlds in which her plots can play out. Yet Alice and Sadie must cooperate and find common ground if there is a chance of solving this mystery.

No one seems to disagree that Theo was kidnapped during the Midsummer party, but why was no ransom ever demanded? Did something go terribly wrong and the baby died before his abductors could ask for money? Did someone spirit him away for reasons other than ransom? Could one of his sisters have been in on his disappearance? Maybe his nanny? Or did a complete stranger take advantage of the revelry going on --- the hundreds of guests, the noisy celebration --- to steal a baby for himself?

Those are the questions that haunt Sadie, and they would be questions that haunted Theo’s sisters were it not for their guilty consciences. Why, then, do they agree to talk with a detective constable at all, even one not working officially on the case? A mystery loves to be solved, and Alice Edevane, writer of many of her own, wants to know exactly what happened that night. She is determined to know all of the intricate details. And her sister, Deborah, has her own demons to face and her own reasons for opening up old wounds.

Beautifully written, THE LAKE HOUSE is about love, family and loss. It’s also about promises, misunderstanding and discovery. While it falls into the mystery genre, it goes far beyond that. Anthony, Eleanor, Alice, Deborah, Clementine and Theo comprise an enviable family, yet the secrets they keep will astonish you. And Sadie Sparrow, dogged detective with a soft spot for lost children and loyal dogs --- not to mention her grandfather, Bertie --- became someone I wanted to have a cuppa with. Bravo, Kate Morton. You’ve penned a love story with such an incredible amount of suspense that readers won’t be able to put it down.

Reviewed by Kate Ayers on October 23, 2015

The Lake House
by Kate Morton

  • Publication Date: June 7, 2016
  • Genres: Fiction
  • Paperback: 512 pages
  • Publisher: Washington Square Press
  • ISBN-10: 1451649355
  • ISBN-13: 9781451649352