Friday Reads: Floral Fiction
Have we got a bouquet of beautiful books for your weekend! Our picks of the season share more that gorgeous floral cover art; These titles also are among Spring’s most well-reviewed. It’s so much better when a spring reading fling is about more than just looks!
A BOTANIST’S GUIDE TO PARTIES AND POISONS by Kate Khavari
Debut author Kate Khavari deftly entwines a pulse-pounding mystery with the struggles of a woman in a male-dominated field in 1923 London.
BLIND OWL by Sadeq Hedayat; Translated by Sassan Tabatabai
Written by one of the greatest Iranian writers of the twentieth century, Blind Owl tells a two-part story of an isolated narrator with a fragile relationship with time and reality…In a new translation that reflects Hedayat’s conversational, confessional tone, Blind Owl joins the ranks of classics by Edgar Allan Poe, Franz Kafka, and Fyodor Dostoyevsky that explore the dark recesses of the human psyche.
AT LEAST YOU HAVE YOUR HEALTH by Madi Sinha
Behind the wholesome veneer of a wellness clinic lies a dangerous secret in this compelling women’s fiction novel from the author of The White Coat Diaries.
Amid visits to her clients’ homes to educate and empower, and occasionally to remove crystals from bodily orifices, Maya comes to idolize the beautiful, successful Amelia. But Amelia’s life isn’t as perfect as it seems, and when Amelia’s teenaged daughter is struck with a mysterious ailment, Maya must race to uncover the reason before it’s too late. In the process, she risks losing what’s most important to her and bringing to light a secret of her own that she’s been desperately trying to keep hidden.
WHEN WE WERE BIRDS: A NOVEL by Ayanna Lloyd Banwo
A mythic love story set in Trinidad, Ayanna Lloyd Banwo’s radiant debut is a masterwork of lush imagination and exuberant storytelling—a spellbinding and hopeful novel about inheritance, loss, and love’s seismic power to heal.
“A searing symphony of magic and loss, love and hope, where in the middle of death, love comes shiny, sparkling and alive. This book might just heal you.”—Marlon James
VAGABONDS!: A NOVEL by Eloghosa Osunde
In the bustling streets and cloistered homes of Lagos, a cast of vivid characters—some haunted, some defiant—navigate danger, demons, and love in a quest to lead true lives. In Nigeria, vagabonds are those whose existence is literally outlawed: the poor, the queer, the drivers and dancers, the abused and displaced and vulnerable. Eloghosa Osunde’s brave, fiercely inventive novel traces a wild array of characters for whom life itself is a form of resistance…Blending unvarnished realism with myth and fantasy, Vagabonds! is a vital work of imagination that takes us deep inside the hearts, minds, and bodies of a people in duress–and in triumph.
SEEKING FORTUNE ELSEWHERE by Sindya Bhanoo
These intimate stories of South Indian immigrants and the families they left behind center women’s lives and ask how women both claim and surrender power—a stunning debut collection from an O. Henry Prize winner. Traveling from Pittsburgh to Eastern Washington to Tamil Nadu, these stories about dislocation and dissonance see immigrants and their families confront the costs of leaving and staying, identifying sublime symmetries in lives growing apart.
CHORUS: A NOVEL by Rebecca Kauffman
For readers of Alice Munro, Elizabeth Strout, and Claire Lombardo, Chorus shepherds seven siblings through two life-altering events—their mother’s untimely death, and a shocking teenage pregnancy—that ultimately follow them through their lives as individuals and as a family. Chorus is a hopeful story of family, of loss and recovery, of complicated relationships forged between brothers and sisters as they move through life together, and of the unlikely forces that first drive them away and then ultimately back home.
VIOLETA: A NOVEL by Isabel Allende; Translated by Frances Riddle
This sweeping novel from the New York Times bestselling author of A Long Petal of the Sea tells the epic story of Violeta del Valle, a woman whose life spans one hundred years and bears witness to the greatest upheavals of the twentieth century.
For more on these and related books, visit the collection Floral Fiction
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