Cover image for A morning in Eden
A morning in Eden
Gilbert, Anna.
Personal Author:
First St. Martin's Minotaur edition.
Publication Information:
New York : St. Martin's Minotaur, 2001.
Physical Description:
237 pages ; 22 cm
Geographic Term:
Format :


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X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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Following the death of her beloved Aunt Belle, Lorna Kent abandons her life in the city to move to a small country town. Once an ancient valley settlement, Canterlow's surrounding countryside remains, even in 1919, virtually untouched by the passage of time. Immediately welcomed by her new community, Lorna soon finds herself helping at the local school and befriending its well-respected headmaster, Adam Ushart.

Enchanted by its beauty, and enraptured by her first experience of love, Lorna is unprepared for the dark undercurrent of violence and betrayal lying beneath the smooth surface of life in Canterlow. When the mysterious death of a beautiful young girl named Alice captures her imagination, Lorna soon finds herself entangled in a web of dangerous secrets. Alice had also been in love, and by discovering the identity of the young girl's seducer, Lorna finds herself involved in the lives of more than one person with something to hide.

Author Notes

Anna Gilbert was born and raised in the north of England where she still lives. Her previous books include The Look of Innocence , winner of the Romantic Novelists' Award, The Treachery of Time , which won the 1994 Catherine Cookson Award, and A Hint of Witchcraft.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

It's 1919, and England is suffering the aftereffects of war and lingering Victorianism. Lorna Kent, raised by a maiden aunt, is a bit of a dreamer and a romantic, yet practical, too; she's pretty without being beautiful, curious about life without knowing how to live it, and full of plans and dreams tempered by the restrictions of the society in which she lives. When her beloved aunt dies, Lorna moves to a country village to live with another relative and finds herself drawn into the tragic story of young Alice Hood, who committed suicide after a mysterious lover left her pregnant and alone. When Lorna falls in love with Mr. Ushart, the married schoolmaster, she feels a connection with Alice and decides she must know the truth about who caused her tragic death. An intriguing mixture of gothic suspense, romantic intrigue, and historical mystery, Gilbert's latest has the flair and style to appeal to a broad range of readers. --Emily Melton

Publisher's Weekly Review

Gilbert's The Treachery of Time won Britain's Catherine Cookson Award, and fans of Cookson will particularly appreciate this latest from the subgenre of gentle gothic. In 1919, Lorna Kent forsakes city life for the more bucolic splendors of Canterlow, England. At first, the small town is a peaceful refuge, seemingly unchanged by the recent distant battles of WWI. But as Lorna slowly discovers, the community's pleasant facade masks a substrata roiled by malicious gossip, mysterious tragedy and even barbaric evil. As Lorna becomes romantically obsessed with the local headmaster, she is equally consumed with finding out the truth behind the death of Alice Hood, an unmarried young woman who committed suicide after finding herself pregnant. Who was the man Lorna saw with Alice just before Alice died? Gilbert's tone is a little too village-cozy for readers to feel seriously menaced by events. There's only one real contender for the role of villain, and the most interesting relationship of the book gives way to a safely tepid one as order is predictably restored to the universe. Like weak tea on a cold day, this slender offering won't satisfy readers looking for robust refreshment, but it's perfect for those who like a comforting story told gracefully and well. (Dec. 28) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved