A beguiling and disarming novel about a mysterious group of children who appear to a disfigured recluse and his country doctor.
Morgan Fletcher, the disfigured heir to a fortune of mysterious origins, lives on a sprawling estate, cut off from a threatening world. One day, his housekeeper, Engel, discovers a baby left on the doorstep. Soon more children arrive, among them stern, watchful David. With the help of Engel and town physician Doctor Crane, Morgan takes the children in, allowing them to explore the mansion … and to begin to uncover the strange and disturbing secrets it holds.
This novel is the first I have read that I feel I have not quite understood.
Morgan is a disfigured man, who has locked himself away in his large house in kind of self imposed exile.
With his housekeeper Engel, who is committed to his care, they have ‘acquired’ several children who just one at a time ‘turned up out of nowhere’. The ringleader, if you can call him that is David. He seems to know things and gives Morgan a mask made of wax. This mask seems to mold itself as if real skin to Morgan’s face, this helps to give Morgan confidence to leave the house.
This is more of a story about Morgan than it is about the children, and is one book that I shall re-read and re-read again. It has a magical quality about it, and although it is so simply written I feel that this is what gives the book a beautiful and air of wonder.
The Children are oddities, in that they are quiet and tend to ‘disappear’. The questions that I found myself asking are, who are they and what are they?.
I have several theories about this read although I suspect non are correct.