Book Review: Garden Spells

Author: Sarah Addison Allen

Pages: 286 (Paperback)

Genre: Fiction/Romance/Magic

Rating: 5 out of 5

Recommendation: A quick read that will make you feel warm and fuzzy inside.

Have you ever eaten a meal or dessert so delicious, so delectable that you try desperately to take it slow, savoring each and every scrumptious morsel, but instead you end up inhaling it, which leaves you satisfied, yet sad that it’s over?  That is the way Garden Spells makes you feel. It’s like Steel Magnolias meets Fried Green Tomatoes meets Practical Magic. Allen gives you just the right amount of sweet Southern charm, mixed with the mystery of enchantment, leaving you all warm and fuzzy inside (and completely unable to put the book down).  

The story follows the lives of the two Waverly sisters, Bascom, North Carolina’s peculiar outcasts.  The main character, Claire Waverley, is a caterer who creates unique food and desserts with the magical plants growing in her family garden.  She keeps to herself, and prefers it that way, since most of the small town believes her family is a little odd – and with good reason (you’re going to love their Aunt Evanelle).  Then, Claire’s sister, Sydney, who deserted Claire 10 years ago, comes back with her five-year-old daughter. The personalities of both sisters couldn’t be more different. Claire is steady, organized, and content in her routine.  Sydney’s past is filled with scandal, treachery, and pain, but she needs her sister more now than she has ever needed her before, if only she can bring herself to be honest with Claire about her past. The lives of these two women get even more complicated when love interests, childhood frenemies, an out-of-sorts apple tree, and Sydney’s past catch up with them.  After a decade apart, they can finally come to together again to help one another overcome their issues through magic, love, and persistence.

Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen Delights Your Senses

Garden Spells has all the components for a good read.  There is hardship, love, magic, and the sweet bonds of small-town friendship.  It’s one of those books that would make a wonderful, heartwarming movie – one that you would want to watch time and time again.  It’s the kind of book you can read with ease on a warm day when you can relax in a hammock with an iced tea, the cool breeze carrying away your troubles and the magical storyline taking you to a place where lavender, honeysuckle, and dandelions can soothe away any ailment and cure any worried thoughts.

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