cover image Homecoming


Kate Morton. Mariner, $29.99 (560p) ISBN 978-0-06-302089-4

Morton (The Clockmaker’s Daughter) delivers an eerie epic involving a wealthy family’s mysterious deaths in Adelaide Hills, South Australia. It’s Christmas Eve 1959, and patriarch Thomas Turner is abroad on business, leaving behind his wife, Isabel, and their four children. One day, neighbor Percy Summers happens upon the family while riding his horse. At first, it appears they’re resting on blankets after a swim, but upon closer inspection, he realizes they’re dead and that baby Thea is missing from her basket. A painstaking investigation begins, and Percy is grilled by a detective who was brought in from out of town. Morton then cuts to 2018 as journalist Jess Turner leaves her London home to travel back to Adelaide after her grandmother, Nora, injures herself in a bad fall. At Nora’s house, she finds an old book about the unresolved Turner deaths, which Jess never knew about, and discovers the family’s connection to her own. Jess’s gripping inquiry into what happened brings up staggering revelations. Along the way, there are beautiful descriptions of the region’s landscape and canny insights into the neighborhood’s tight-knit community. This is Morton’s best yet. Agent: Lizzy Kremer, David Higham Assoc. (Apr.)