Briseis has a gift: she can grow plants from tiny seeds to rich blooms with a single touch. When Briseis’s aunt dies and wills her a dilapidated estate in rural New York, Bri and her parents decide to leave Brooklyn behind for the summer. Hopefully there, surrounded by plants and flowers, Bri will finally learn to control her gift. But their new home is sinister in ways they could never have imagined–it comes with a specific set of instructions, an old-school apothecary, and a walled garden filled with the deadliest botanicals in the world that can only be entered by those who share Bri’s unique family lineage. When strangers begin to arrive on their doorstep, asking for tinctures and elixirs, Bri learns she has a surprising talent for creating them. One of the visitors is Marie, a mysterious young woman who Bri befriends, only to find that Marie is keeping dark secrets about the history of the estate and its surrounding community. There is more to Bri’s sudden inheritance than she could have imagined, and she is determined to uncover it . . . until a nefarious group comes after her in search of a rare and dangerous immortality elixir. Up against a centuries-old curse and the deadliest plant on earth, Bri must harness her gift to protect herself and her family.
I’ve been ready for this book since I finished Cinderella Is Dead. It didn’t even what it was about. If this author wrote it, I was going to read it. Though, the synopsis did make me even more intrigued. A retelling of the The Secret Garden, about a girl who can make plants blossom and grow with a single touch. But, the gift has a deadly side, and she suddenly inherits a mysterious old house that has strangers randomly showing up. Oh yeah, I was intrigued.
I just love all Kalynn Bayron books. I know I’ve only read two, but two that are as good as these is enough to say that I love all Kalynn Bayron books.
I never quite fully got into The Secret Garden. I got the general gist of it, but was very heavy on the general haha. It just didn’t seem like something I fully loved. But, I definitely fully loved this retelling. So much so that I might just go check out the original to see what all the hype is about.
I know this is weird thing to start off with, but I’m going to start off by talking about the plants, because they were SO COOL. I don’t want to go into too much detail about the main character’s power, because I don’t want to spoil anything, but it was so fascinating. It felt like a breath of fresh air. It was also just downright cool to learn so much about plants haha. Probably because there is an emphasis on the poisonous kind.
I think I loved the plant aspect of this book so much because of how freaking well this book is written. Seriously, Bayron is TALENTED. Her writing feels like a cool breeze, something that slips over your skin and leave a refreshing feelings behind. And that feeling goes very well with plants and gardens. It also goes really well with books in general because I really did fall completely love with her writing. It’s just that good.
The characters were another highlight. The strong, healthy familial relationships, the longing for friendship, and just being downright badass. Every single one of them felt like they had their own story and their own thoughts and feelings. It was amazing.
Greek myths also tie heavily into this book and the best way I can describe them is just downright fascinating. Like, I want to go find another Greek myth book to read after this because this one has me craving more. Again, I’ll be tightlipped on the specifics to avoid spoilers, but just know that if you enjoy any kind of Greek myths, this is DEFINETLY the book for you. Plus, there’s a bit of a mystery and some riddle solving tied into them.
Another thing to mention is that I got straightbaited by this book. I know, I’m laughing too, and it’s great.
Overall, I fell completely in love with this book. Greek myths, amazing writing, plants, and incredible characters, plus so much more, all add up to something amazingly incredible. I’m gonna say it’s so good again even though I’ve said it so many times already, but it’s that good. So yes, this book is so good.