Friday, January 27, 2012

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen
"The Waverleys have always been a curious family, endowed with peculiar gifts that make them outsiders even in their hometown of Bascom, North Carolina. Even their garden has a reputation, famous for its feisty apple tree that bears prophetic fruit, and its edible flowers, imbued with special powers. Generations of Waverleys tended this garden. Their history was in the soil. But so were their futures.

A successful caterer, Claire Waverley prepares dishes made with her mystical plants - from the nasturtiums that aid in keeping secrets and the pansies that make children thoughtful, to the snapdragons intended to discourage the attentions of her amorous neighbor. Meanwhile, her elderly cousin, Evanelle, is known for distributing unexpected gifts whose uses become uncannily clear. They are the last of the Waverleys - except for Claire’s rebellious sister, Sydney, who fled Bascom the moment she could, abandoning Claire, as their own mother had years before.

When Sydney suddenly returns home with a young daughter of her own, Claire’s quiet life is turned upside down - along with the protective boundary she has so carefully constructed around her heart. Together again in the house they grew up in, Sydney takes stock of all she left behind, as Claire struggles to heal the wounds of the past. And soon the sisters realize they must deal with their common legacy - if they are ever to feel at home in Bascom - or with each other."

It always amazes me when I discover a new to me author and get enthralled in a story to learn that he or she is so young.  There are times I am reading a story and you get the feeling of a very old soul. One who knows, whose lived a dozen lifetimes.  One whose been around a while, been writing forever.   The ladies on the Well Trained Mind group have been talking up a storm about Sarah Addison Allen's novels so decided I must read one.  Garden Spells is an incredibly charming story with an endearing cast of characters blending magical realism and romance with small town politics and secrets.  I thoroughly enjoyed Garden Spells and look forward to reading more of Sarah Addison Allen.

ISBN-13: 9780553384833
Publisher: Random House Publishing Group
Pages: 320
Excerpt