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Publisher's Summary

Weaving. Healing. Haunting. 

The spellbinding story of a mysterious boarding school sheltering a centuries-old secret by the best-selling author of The Botanist's Daughter.

Australian history teacher Thea Rust arrives at an exclusive boarding school in the British countryside only to find that she is to look after the first intake of girls in its 150-year history. She is to stay with them in Silk House, a building with a long and troubled past, where the shadows hide more mysteries than she could ever imagine.

In the late 1700s, Rowan Caswell leaves her village to work in the home of an English silk merchant. She is thrust into a new and dangerous world where her talent for herbs and healing soon attracts attention.

In London, Mary-Louise Stephenson lives amid the clatter of the weaving trade and dreams of becoming a silk designer, a job that is the domain of men. Arriving in the market town of Oxleigh, she brings with her a length of fabric woven with a pattern of deadly plants that will have far-reaching consequences for all who dwell in the Silk House.

Intoxicating, haunting and inspired by the author's background, The Silk House is the exceptional new Gothic mystery by Kayte Nunn.

©2020 Kayte Nunn (P)2020 Hachette Australia Audio

What listeners say about The Silk House

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  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    2 out of 5 stars

Lots of promising themes that never materialise

The book starts off promising and I thought it was going to be a combination of The Corset and The Binding, but I was left confused and disappointed. None of the elements introduced in the story seemed to resolve. It feels unfinished or abridged. What was the role of the fabric designer? What was the silk merchant up to, why did the weaver want to get him back? The list goes on....
Odd to have a non-Australian read the part of an Australian too.

8 people found this helpful

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Entertaining read

lovely read that weaves nicely from the 1760s to now easily. a simple easy listening story.

4 people found this helpful

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Well paced, satisfying ending. I highly recommend.

Intelligent and captivating. Long enough to be worth it, yet not so long or complex that it distracted me from other things. I really enjoyed the interesting threads of the story coming together at the end for a satisfying finish. Kayte Nunn's writing kept my interest from start to finish and I really enjoyed the narration too, Definitely worth the time.

1 person found this helpful

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Good but disappointing ending

The story was good but the ending was silly and a bit of a let down.

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Interesting story line

A quaint story linking the past and the present. Quite enjoyed the narration although her words are very clipped. Interesting information regarding medicinal herbs.

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Enchanting

I was completely delighted and surprised by this little gem of a book. It took me to a place where herbs, weaving, fabrics had stories of women came alive. I was completely enthralled and kept guessing what would happen. The narrator was spot on, and really brought the story to life.

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Cracker of a story

I hate, hate, hate horror and even suspense, but this had that nice, subtle creeping feeling of ye olde Gothic horror and I really enjoyed it.

I preferred the parts of the novel set in the past, although that could just be my preference for historical fiction, I think it's because the present day chapters didn't have the realism or believability of things that could actually come to pass in a school. And I'm not talking about the fantasy elements of the book, I'm talking about the characterisation of staff and teachers.

Parts of the book could have gone further; To avoid spoilers I'll just say there was a stressful / suspenseful part of the story and instead of resolving it, the author just skips ahead in time and the situation has somehow miraculously been resolved and you didn't get to be a part of it. The ending is a little flat and let down the story a little bit imo but on the whole, it's a good read.

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Mediocre

This has/had potential to be an engrossing story across different time periods but sadly it all feels forced and pedestrian. Completely lacking in art or subtlety. I really enjoyed The Botanist's Daughter, so this was a huge disappointment- completely lacking in complexity, nuance & depth. I did manage to finish it, but I won't be rushing back to this author again sadly.

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The narrator kept me hanging onto every word!

Rowan is my favorite character in this book. Her quiet strength shone through and not without the brilliant narration of Amanda. I was not expecting a masterpiece but was thoroughly entertained. Will be looking out for Kayte's other books.

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