Sunday, April 2, 2017

The Garden of Small Beginnings by Abbi Waxman ~ My Thoughts


The Garden of Small Beginnings

The Garden of Small Beginnings by Abbi Waxman
Paperback and ebook, 368 pages
Expected publication: May 2nd 2017 by Berkley Books

Not since Good Grief has a book about a young widow been so poignant, funny, original, and utterly believable. A compelling debut novel about loss.

Give grief a chance . . .

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 about The Garden of Small Beginnings ~~

(I love to note the first lines of the books I'm reading. First lines can really grab a reader's attention and I love seeing where the author takes the reader after their first lines.)

First line—"It's been more than three years since my husband died, yet in many ways he's more useful than ever."

I enjoyed The Garden of Small Beginnings immensely. Lilian is a young widow with a small child trying to make it all work. She gets an assignment to work on the illustrations in a gardening book. Little did she know that this assignment would change her life.

Her boss makes her take a gardening class so she can be better informed about her upcoming job. I loved all the wonderful characters that she and her son meet in this class. There are a lot of misfits in the class and people with problems but they all just seem to mesh and connect with each other.

The Garden of Small Beginnings is an enjoyable story about the power of friendship and support and I loved every minute of it!

I received a copy of this book from First to Read and am voluntarily reviewing it.


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  1. Hi Susan, looks like a good one! It would be great if you added your review to the Books You Loved: April collection over at Carole's Chatter. If you would like to join in the fun please schedule a reminder for the first Wednesday of each month (NZ time). Cheers!

    1. Hi Carole - thanks for stopping by. It's been awhile since I have shared on your blog. I used to and then seemed to have forgotten about it. I'll start doing that again. Thanks for doing that! Have a great week and happy reading!


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