A horticultural fantasy

  • by <a title="Carol" href="http://areadinglife.com/author/carolellison/" target="_blank">Carol</a>, Everett Public Library staff
  • Thursday, May 24, 2012 3:49pm
  • LifeA Reading Life

Sorticulture is fast approaching and we’re smack in the middle of gardening season. What better way to ease those sore muscles after a turn in the garden than unwinding with a book featuring some truly crazy gardening practices?

Crystal Gardens by local author Amanda Quick is the first in a new trilogy, the Ladies of Lantern Street. Each of the Ladies of Lantern Street novels focuses on women who are employed by a hired companion agency. While they appear to be hired out as paid companions, the ladies actually use their specialized psychic powers to solve mysteries. Have I lost you? Keep reading—the gardens will take prime focus, I promise.

Crystal Gardens is the story of paid companion and budding novelist Evangeline Ames. She’s come to the small town of Little Dixby to focus on writing her novel. Unfortunately she was followed from London and is attacked in her rented cottage. She flees in the middle of the night and takes refuge in the Crystal Gardens. She has heard the villagers speak warnings of the dangers that lurk within, but she takes a risk that pays off. Eluding her attacker, she is then discovered by the owner of the property, Lucas Sebastian. He offers to help her figure out who sent the attacker after her, and why.

Lucas’s deceased uncle, the former owner of the Crystal Gardens, was rumored to have gone mad trying to improve the properties of the plants in the gardens. No one really knows what makes the plants glow—yes, glow— but the stories of missing intruders are still told in the village. Most people are smart enough to steer clear of the gardens, but the legend of buried Roman gold is enough to lure a few people past the gates despite the rumors that the grounds are haunted.

What may first appear to be a romance wrapped in a mystery and sprinkled with the paranormal is actually a fantastic novel surrounding the creation and growth of the weirdest garden I have ever encountered in literature. You will be fascinated by the horticultural possibilities in Crystal Gardens.

If you enjoy the paranormal aspects of this book, you may also enjoy titles in the Arcane series, written under the two nom de plumes of the author Jayne Ann Krentz : Amanda Quick and Jayne Castle. I’ve always been a fan of her works but these novels have reduced me to counting down the days until the next book is released…and I couldn’t be happier.

Be sure to visit A Reading Life for more reviews and news of all things happening at the Everett Public Library

More in Life

‘Found’: Author and climber a 20-year veteran of mountain rescue

In her second book, Bree Loewen shares her experiences of volunteering with Seattle Mountain Rescue.

Secret garden: Privacy trees that won’t outgrow a small space

These plants offer some height to block out unwanted sights without taking over your yard.

Stock your winter bookshelf with these animal and nature reads

Four new books cover outdoors topics from butterflies to wolves.

The Shed Players recently released their new album “Our Shingle Most Favorites.”
Listen here: Josh Clauson, The Shed Players release new CDs

This feature is all about Snohomish County’s homegrown talent: locals who make music and record it.

Newfangled cooker isn’t for those with tried and true methods

Columnist Jennifer Bardsley recently succumbed to peer pressure and purchased an Instant Pot.

Now is the time to assess your student’s back-to-school plan

Take a good look at how your kids are managing their new routine, class, teacher(s) and homework.

Author’s talk of birds and clouds kicks off Marysville series

1. Birds and clouds Marysville’s Outdoor Adventure Speakers Series is kicking into… Continue reading

How to shop in the street markets of France

It’s the best way to connect with the nation’s farmers and artisans.

Oprah Winfrey joins ‘60 Minutes’ for 50th anniversary year

The media giant debuts on tonight’s show, reporting on a story about America’s political divisions.

Most Read