books I've read

Anne Hawn's books

Who Moved My Cheese?
If Democrats Had Any Brains, They'd Be Republicans
Scientific Secrets for Self-Control
Just One Damned Thing After Another
The Vanishing
Exercises in Knitting
The Good Dream
The Very Best of Edgar Allan Poe
The Chosen
BT-Kids' Knits
Talking God
The Professor
The Christmas Files
The Finisher
Home Decor for 18-Inch Dolls: Create 10 Room Settings with Furniture and 15 Outfits with Accessories
Dracula and Other Stories
A New Song
All Quiet on the Western Front
File Under: 13 Suspicious Incidents

Anne Hawn Smith's favorite books »

I'm reading 150 Books

Saturday, June 05, 2010

The Thirteenth Tale

The Thirteenth TaleThe Thirteenth Tale by Diane Setterfield

My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Reclusive biographer Margaret Lea has grown up in her father's bookstore. She has been asked to write a biography of the dying Vida Winter. The mysterious Ms. Winter has been a wildly popular writer whose real background has been clouded in secrecy. It is not that Ms. Winter won't tell of her past, it is that she makes up wild stories that are obviously untrue. She published a book called the Thirteen Tales, but there were only twelve. But now she is dying and she wants to finally have her tale told.

As Margaret begins to interview her in her brooding mansion she finds that she is in the dark about what she is to write. Ms. Winter seems to be spinning a tale again and Margaret does some investigating. What follows is a tale that is eerily like Jane Eyre and Wuthering Heights. As Ms. Winter becomes weaker, the story becomes more twisted and sinister.

I enjoyed this book. I found the idea to be completely original while serving up a true gothic mystery with all the false trails, the sinister seeming servants and the derelict old mansion. I will probably read this one again as I am sure I missed quite a bit the first time.

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