Garden Spells would make a great “chick flick”. If it were one, it would be a cross between Chocolat and Sleeping With the Enemy. Bascom, North Carolina is home to an odd assortment of citizens, and none are more eccentric than the Waverleys. Each Waverley has a special gift. Claire caters the affairs in town with her magical dishes made with edible flowers and Evanelle always seems to know, even before they do, when someone will need a certain kitchen gadget or an extra quarter. Strangest of all is the apple tree in the back yard of the Waverley house which bears very unusual apples.
When Claire’s sister Sydney returns home after a long absence, on the run from an abusive relationship, it shakes up Claire’s lonely but safe life. Will Claire take a chance on love with the sexy artist next door? Will Sydney find love in the safe haven of her hometown and discover her Waverley “gift”? Will that apple tree ever stop butting into thier lives? This is a quick and enjoyable read. Recommended. Read a review of Allen’s book, The Sugar Queen, here and her newest book, The Girl Who Chased the Moon, here.