Garden Spells by Sarah Allison Allen - 290 pages
For nearly a decade, 34-year-old Claire Waverley, at peace with her family inheritance, has lived in the house alone, embracing the spirit of the grandmother who raised her, ruing her mother's unfortunate destiny and seemingly unconcerned about the fate of her rebellious sister, Sydney, who freed herself long ago from their small town's constraints. Using her grandmother's mystical culinary traditions, Claire has built a successful catering business -- and a carefully controlled, utterly predictable life -- upon the family's peculiar gift for making life-altering delicacies: lilac jelly to engender humility, for instance, or rose geranium wine to call up fond memories. Garden Spells reveals what happens when Sydney returns to Bascom with her young daughter, turning Claire's routine existence upside down. With Sydney's homecoming, the magic that the quiet caterer has measured into recipes to shape the thoughts and moods of others begins to influence Claire's own emotions in terrifying and delightful ways.
As the sisters reconnect and learn to support one another, each finds romance where she least expects it, while Sydney's child, Bay, discovers both the safe home she has longed for and her own surprising gifts. With the help of their elderly cousin Evanelle, endowed with her own uncanny skills, the Waverley women redeem the past, embrace the present, and take a joyful leap into the future.
My Review: 4.5 stars
Recipes and magic, sisters and family ties, romance and homecoming; this little gem of a book is a little bit of fairy dust for us all. This author did a fine job at creating magical realism with turning it hokey. This book makes you want to believe, move forward and find strength.
Quotes I liked:
-“She sometimes thought she was going crazy. Her first thought when she woke up was always how to get him out of her thoughts. And she would keep watch, hoping to see him next door, while plotting ways to never have to see him again.”
-“When you're happy for yourself, it fills you. When you're happy for someone else, it pours over. It was almost too bright to watch.”
-“Sometimes people who had been together for a long time got to imagining that things used to be better, even when they weren't.”
Tags: Chick Lit, Fiction, 2008, Favorites
Labels: 2008, Chick Lit, Favorites, Fiction