Where I share my love of books with reviews, features, giveaways and memes. Family and needlepoint are thrown in from time to time.

Monday, May 15, 2017

Book Review: The Garden of Small Beginnings by Abbi Waxman

Title: The Garden of Small Beginnings
Author: Abbi Waxman
Publisher: Berkley

About the book: Lilian Girvan has been a single mother for three years—ever since her husband died in a car accident. One mental breakdown and some random suicidal thoughts later, she’s just starting to get the hang of this widow thing. She can now get her two girls to school, show up to work, and watch TV like a pro. The only problem is she’s becoming overwhelmed with being underwhelmed.

At least her textbook illustrating job has some perks—like actually being called upon to draw whale genitalia. Oh, and there’s that vegetable-gardening class her boss signed her up for. Apparently being the chosen illustrator for a series of boutique vegetable guides means getting your hands dirty, literally. Wallowing around in compost on a Saturday morning can’t be much worse than wallowing around in pajamas and self-pity.

After recruiting her kids and insanely supportive sister to join her, Lilian shows up at the Los Angeles Botanical Garden feeling out of her element. But what she’ll soon discover—with the help of a patient instructor and a quirky group of gardeners—is that into every life a little sun must shine, whether you want it to or not…

My Thoughts:  I enjoyed reading this book and getting to know Lili.  Even though it starts out letting us know she is a widow, this book isn't so much a book about a widow as it is a book about a woman ready to let go of the past, but afraid to do so.  It also uses gardening to throw in some witty repartee in between each of the main chapters. 

You have to like Lili. She is now a single mom, just working on getting through a day with her and her kids, Annabel and Clare intact.  Her sister is a bastian of support for her, whether it is talking about the mistreatment they received as kids from their mom, taking care of the girls, or talking about the men in their lives.   And for Lili there is a new man - but he is the instructor of their Saturday morning gardening class, and he is Danish, and Lili can't stop thinking about the unexpected kiss they shared.  

There are a lot of lively characters in the book besides Lili and her sister.  The gardening class is filled with people from all walks of life and they come together and blend naturally.  As I mentioned earlier, in between each main chapter is a small one page chapter about a different vegetable.  It gives you many tips on how to grow them successfully, with some sarcasm thrown in.

I found this to be a quick, easy read - and perfect inspiration to go dig around in some dirt!

~I received a complimentary ecopy of this book from Penguin Random House in exchange for my unbiased review.~


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