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…
Sabrina-Kate - 5 Star
I simply loved this book. From the gorgeous yet simplistic cover to the story within, The Garden of Small Beginnings is one of my favorite books of this year so far.
Lilian was one of those characters that you loved and just wanted good things to happen to. Having had a rough past few years, she was as true to life as they come. I felt for her, felt like her and sometimes wanted to be her. I loved how strong she was and what a great role model she was to her own children despite having been through so much.
Admittedly, the story was a bit easy to figure out at times, but that was part of its charm. I really do enjoy books that are inspiring and easy to read and this was definitely all of that and more!
I loved that the plot was endearing and amusing and made me want to cry and give Lilian and hug. I also really liked all of the supporting characters, from her kids, to her sister and to the oh-so-cute gardener. If you give this book a try, you will probably also fall in love as well!
Thank you to Penguin Random House for our review copy. All opinions are our own.
Connect with Abbi Waxman: