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Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen (2007)


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English (309)  German (1)  Piratical (1)  All languages (311)
Showing 1-5 of 309 (next | show all)
A fun blend of magical realism and romance set in a small town in the South, Garden Spells was a delight. This is the first book in what is called the Waverley Family series, and I'm certainly planning to read any subsequent books.

Claire Waverley is a 34-year-old single woman running a catering and baking business specializing in edible flowers and floral flavorings - and the magical effects they can produce. She lives alone in a large Queen Anne that belonged to the grandmother she grew up with, in the fictional small college town of Bascom, North Carolina. Claire's mother abandoned her there along with her six-years-younger sister Sydney, and disappeared. Sydney too left town in imitation of her mother, but comes back at the beginning of this story along with her five-year-old daughter, Bay.

It's not a deep book and is rather predictable (particularly the romance), but the plot is enjoyable and the characters are quirky yet endearing. This was author Sarah Addison Allen's first book, and her others sound interesting to me, too. Susan Ericksen does a fabulous job as the audiobook narrator. I especially liked her voices for Claire's and Sydney's elderly cousin Evanelle (who is compelled to give people things they later find useful), and the evil wealthy Southern matron Ariel Clark.

© Amanda Pape - 2016

[This audiobook was borrowed from and returned to my local public library.] ( )
  riofriotex | May 14, 2016 |
Good story idea, just didn't catch me well. ( )
  mariahsidhe | May 12, 2016 |
I got a strong recommendation from a buddy in GR on this book and i read it. My first book by [a:Sarah Addison Allen|566874|Sarah Addison Allen|https://d202m5krfqbpi5.cloudfront.net/authors/1372537232p2/566874.jpg] and now all her other books are in my To-Read list:)

Garden spells is about a garden. A magical garden where herbs, flowers and fruits are grown. A combination of these will work as a magic potion in the life of the people who consumed it :)
Waverley's, generation after generation take forward the tradition of magical herbs and bring joy to the needful, but with a sad life of their own.
Two sisters, one stays home and takes forward the name of Waverley and another runs and leads an unfortunate life. They meet after long time and are forced to live together. And the story begins, with past, with future and with magic :) ( )
  PallaviSharma | May 9, 2016 |
  MrsDoglvrs | Apr 24, 2016 |
I had Garden Spells for years; the first time I saw it I knew I would like it, but the time never seemed right to start reading it until today.

I loved every word I read. It is simply one of the best books I ever read. This book is a must read for people who love food, magic, family and in need of hope. This book feels as if I bought it as a gift to myself. I just loved it.

In some ways the book reminds me a lot of the movie "Practical Magic", two sisters who have magical blood running through their veins, one stays home, with a garden and acknowledge of the secrets of gardening and plants, the other is always running away trying to find love and normality but never finding them, until a guy hurts her and she needs to feel family and safety again, so she runs back home to her sister.

I wished the book was even longer!! I wish there would be a sequel!! ( )
  mrsdanaalbasha | Mar 12, 2016 |
Showing 1-5 of 309 (next | show all)
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» Add other authors (8 possible)

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Sarah Addison Allenprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Allen, Sarah Addisonmain authorall editionsconfirmed
Ericksen, SusanNarratorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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For my mom. I love you.
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Every smiley moon, without fail, Claire dreamed of her childhood.
When you're happy for yourself, it fills you. When you're happy for someone else, it pours over.
When you tell a secret to someone, embarrassing or not, it forms a connection.  That person means something to you simply by virtue of what he knows.
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Haiku summary
Flowers have powers,
Family magic runs deep,
This garden sparkles.

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0553590324, Mass Market Paperback)

In a garden surrounded by a tall fence, tucked away behind a small, quiet house in an even smaller town, is an apple tree that is rumored to bear a very special sort of fruit. In this luminous debut novel, Sarah Addison Allen tells the story of that enchanted tree, and the extraordinary people who tend it.…

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.

Enchanting and heartfelt, this captivating novel is sure to cast a spell with a style all its own….

From the Hardcover edition.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:12:04 -0400)

(see all 5 descriptions)

The Waverleys of Bascom, North Carolina, are a curious family--even their garden has a reputation, famous for its feisty apple tree that bears prophetic fruit, and its edible flowers, imbued with special powers. When Sydney returns home with a daughter of her own, she and her sister Claire must deal with their legacy.… (more)

(summary from another edition)

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2 editions of this book were published by Audible.com.

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