Book Reviews of The Distant Hours

The Distant Hours
The Distant Hours
Author: Kate Morton
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ISBN-13: 9781439152799
ISBN-10: 1439152799
Publication Date: 7/12/2011
Pages: 576
  • Currently 4/5 Stars.

4 stars, based on 123 ratings
Publisher: Washington Square Press
Book Type: Paperback
Reviews: Amazon | Write a Review

17 Book Reviews submitted by our Members...sorted by voted most helpful

reviewed The Distant Hours on
Helpful Score: 3
Kate Morton,Is a true storyteller.she gets you hooked.I couldn't put this down .I was living the story. If this is the type of reading you like ,she is the best. I have read all three of her books ,and they are books I am saving for my granddaughter. so I won't be swapping them. that says it all .
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 109 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
Did you ever come across a newer author and get so excited because they made you feel all their books are going to be great? The kind of author who's first few books are so wonderful, you have to force yourself to wait to read whatever else they have available? You enjoy them so much you'd consider selling your soul to get your greedy little hands on their next book? That's how I used to feel about Kate Morton. I loved the author's first two books, and expected the same quality from her third. I was sorely disappointed.
Where I didn't want The Forgotten Garden or The House at Riverton to end, I couldn't wait for this one to. When you strip everything away, the basic story is a great idea, the characters a very likeable, and the surroundings are beautifully described. But, where the hell was Morton's editor? This book was seriously bogged down with useless, rambling, unimportant thoughts and descriptions. What makes this so infuriating is even though Morton felt the need to ramble on and on about nothing, unless I missed them, there were still loose ends at the end of the book!! The book felt like Morton was trying to write a gothic story along the lines of Brontë, Shelley, or Collins. She should never do this again, because she fails. Miserably.

If this had been my first Kate Morton book, it would have been my last. I will still read her next book, but I am no longer overly excited about it
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 2 more book reviews
Helpful Score: 1
I read this book by Kate Morton after reading The Forgotten Garden. It was a very interesting story and I enjoyed it immensely. I love the way she writes and her descriptive narrative is so beautifully written. Characters are sympathetic and believable.
reviewed The Distant Hours on
Great read, I will be reading more of Kate Morton.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 4 more book reviews
Second book by Kate Morton, that I have read. I thoroughly enjoyed!
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 3 more book reviews
This is the first novel I have read by Kate Morton. I really enjoyed the book and I liked the fact that it kept me guessing, trying to figure out what happened to the characters, until the end of the book. Needless to say I was surprised. I will definitely be looking for her other books to read!
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 44 more book reviews
Have to admit it took quite a while to get involved. Almost quit quite a few times. I would rate the first half of the book a 2 - so slow - the first 200 pages could have be edited down to 100 pages, much too wordy. Too many rambling descriptions that were unnecessary and bogged the story down. Was disappointed because I had read "The Forgotten Garden" and enjoyed it from the beginning so was looking forward to reading this. I persevered because I liked the basic plot and characters.

The second half of the book I would rate a 4. Once more of the actual story was being told and I got involved I enjoyed the book. But still disappointed in the end, felt like there were still loose ends.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 469 more book reviews
Having read "The Forgotten Hours" years ago, and really loved it, I was a little disappointed in this bbok, but it is still a worthy rad, a gothic mystery. Her characters are so interesting and the plot kept me interested as I love historical fiction.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 2 more book reviews
I found it to be a tedious read. Hard to get into and stay into. Slow moving. Obvious foreshadowing. Finally gave up, skimmed through and read bits and pieces to find the ending somewhat interesting.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 16 more book reviews
I got absolutely hooked on Kate Morton after I read House at Riverton. She is one of those writers that you can't wait to read her next book. I love the way she switches between the past and present, giving you insight into each event. The Distant Hours is no different, Edie is a young editor who stumbles upon Milderhurst Castle, once home of Raymond Blythe, the man who wrote the book that made her passionate about reading. Unbeknownst to her though, she has her own bit of history wrapped up in the decaying walls that is home to the curious Blythe sisters, Raymond's three daughters. Edie begins to unravel the truth behind the walls, opening secrets not only from her family's past, but the tragic stories from World War II that have kept the Blythe sisters from moving on.
It is slow to start, but the ending is something you would not want to miss! A great summer read
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 130 more book reviews
It took about 200 pages before I was engrossed but from then to the end---it was enchanting.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 16 more book reviews
A lot of "filler" but still a good story and characters well developed.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 219 more book reviews
Love, love, LOVE Kate Morton's descriptive phrases! Her way with words is refreshing. Love the way she slowly feeds you clues, until you are itching to find out what is next. However, in this book nearly every single character smokes either cigarettes or a pipe, and not just once in awhile, but constantly. Somehow I don't feel that was at all necessary to the story, even if it was staged during WWII when smoking was common. The book was published in 2010, and even her modern characters smoke heavily. It became a distraction from the plot to me, a former smoker. I wish she'd left those scenes out totally! D.
reviewed The Distant Hours on
A good book but not as good as her other books. Too long a lot of details could have been left out and jusgt had the storyline.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 504 more book reviews
My friend passed this across the table and promised a trio of spinsters, a creaky castle and long hidden family secrets. I probably should not have taken the book, seeing as it's roughly a million pages long and I read at a slugs pace, but I was sold anyway because I'm nosey and books with dark secrets cannot be turned away.

This book kept luring me in with tantalizing lead ins to secrets.

But then it delivered nothing but a whole lot of empty promises until about page 4 million and 80. Then the twists and turns come fast and furiously but for me it was a little too little and all far too late.

From here on out, I will never ignore my instincts to DNF.

So on to the good. For those with more patience for slow moving books than I, this story is very atmospheric and I have to admit that there was something about it that kept me reading. It starts off with a letter that leads a woman to delve into the past of her mom and her relationship to three sisters who live in a castle. She's nosey like me. I liked her. There's a smidge of romance and the promise of dastardly deeds and perhaps a murder. There were many points where I zombie read and had to flip back a few pages but it always managed to re-hook me. The characters are also a quirky bunch and I liked that.

So, I'd say this is a good choice for a gloomy rainy day (week, month?) if you like mysterious books where the castle is more of a character than many of the living, breathing characters within. But you must have endless patience and I clearly do not.
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 4 more book reviews
Great book! Interesting characters and plot twist!
reviewed The Distant Hours on + 350 more book reviews
This is a story of Milderhurst Castle and the family that lives within the stone walls.

I read and liked Kate Morton's books: The Forgotten Garden, The Secret Keeper and The House at Riverton. I was disappointed in this book. I found it hard to get into and by page 250 I wanted to stop reading but I figured I must push on. It was not until I hit the 400's did I want to keep reading. It would have been nice if she included the story of the Mud Man and not just a prologue. The book keeps referring to it. This book is over 500 pages, she could have included a 250 page book of the Mud Man and it would have taken nothing away from the story. The book had too much filler.