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Comments

vicki (skiourophile / bibliolathas)

I'm not much of a gardener, but I can see that this approach is so much more humanising for the reader who wants to get a better picture of these 'monoliths' (great description!).

Liz F

This is a lovely book isn't it?
I idly looked it up on the library catalogue not expecting to find it but there it was - and in my branch of the library too!

Needless to say, I pounced and if the first few pages (and your review) are anything to go by, I am sure that I will love it.
It has now joined my 'in progress' pile which is currently heading for Leaning Tower of Pisa proportions!
Oh well - leopards and spots and all that!

Janet

Again this sounds like a book I would enjoy, will have to put it on my wish list.
I started Shadow Sister yesterday and I have to tell you it gave me nightmares.
I was a teacher and in my last year of teaching an emotionally disturbed student was put in my class, he was very bright, but any problem would make him fly off, the rest of the class was terrified of him.
I did all I could and finally demanded, for my sake and my class's sake that he be removed. He was.
Shadow Sister has brought back memories of him.
But what a good book it is.

Stefanie

Such a fun book! You know if history was told like this when I was a kid in school I would have wanted to grow up to be a historian. History is stories not important dates to memorize. I am still tickled when I think about the meetings in PA where they were all hashing out the constitution and spend their breaks talking about and visiting gardens.

Penny

I actually checked this out, some time ago, from the library. Like much of what I check out, it sat in my teeter-totter of a pile, until finally being returned. Your review is so inciting, Danielle, that I will soon be on a mission to check it out again. Thanks.

Danielle

I am not a gardener either--but I like the idea of gardening--does that count? :) It was a wonderful book--and did make the men more human and everyday. They are such icons now that is nice to get a feel for what they were really like.

Danielle

It is! I am happy to hear your library has this one--she does live in Britain though and I think one of her other books is more about British gardeners. Besides I get the idea that Britain is a nation of gardeners--so I expect there are lots of reading choices! It is easy reading and very interesting, but she packs so much in it sort of slows you down as you want to take it all in. Needless to say for me--now I want to read about each and every man and more about those years of the Revolution and just after! Your pile sounds like my pile!

Danielle

I can happily recommend the Wulf book--she is an exceptional writer. Oh, though, the van der Vlugt book sounds like it has hit quite close to home! That would indeed be scary. I think you might be surprised by the direction the story goes--but it certainly makes you think about what teachers go through. Thankfully it sounds like your school handled the situation much differently than in the book! It is a very suspenseful story--so glad to hear you are enjoying it.

Danielle

Isn't that the truth! I could devour history books in general if they were all written in such a way. Who would have thought they were so interested in their gardens, but it really does ring true and makes so much sense. I love that Jefferson was so generous with sharing his seeds, too. Very cool.

Danielle

That's just what happens to me and my library books. We seem to have the same habit of wanting to read more than we have time for (and those lines and short check out due dates do make for hard going sometimes). It is well worth bringing home again (and even again if need be--I can't tell you how often I have checked out a book several times in order to get it read....). ;)

Caroline

How interesting. I hadn't heard of America being thought of as a nation of gardeners. That sounds so great and I loved the quote you shared. She sounds like a gifted writer.

Danielle

I was surprised too by this book--in many ways. I had never thought of Washington and Jefferson as gardeners, even though I knew both had plantations (and I have even been to Washington's Mount Vernon). She is a most wonderful writer/storyteller-and if all NF was so good, I could read so much more of it!

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