Thursday, December 22, 2011

Review: The Language of Flowers by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

Title: The Language of Flowers
Author: Vanessa Diffenbaugh
Publisher: Ballantine Books
Publish Date: August 23rd 2011
Source: Library

Why You're Reading This Book:

  • You like good writing.
  • You like realistic characters.
  • You like coming of age stories.
What's the Story?:

From "The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating grief, mistrust, and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings.

Now eighteen and emancipated from the system, Victoria has nowhere to go and sleeps in a public park, where she plants a small garden of her own. Soon a local florist discovers her talents, and Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But a mysterious vendor at the flower market has her questioning what’s been missing in her life, and when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness."

My Two Cents:

AHHH! I loved this book. Just to give you a taste of how much I loved it, it actually made me cry. I'm a crier by nature but books typically don't make me cry unless they are really something special and this book is definitely special. I was really sad when I got to the last page. It was one of those books where I'd love to know how the characters ended up after the story ended. Diffenbaugh did such a good job with pulling me in and really making me care about what happened to the characters.

I fell in love with all of the characters. The main character Victoria has been hurt so much. She's been bounced from foster home to foster home throughout her young life. It's easy to see why she's a little mistrustful of other people and why she has so much trouble once she was emancipated and out on her own at 18. My heart truly broke for her. Her character was so well written and so real. The other characters were also really well written. I love when an author is able to take a character and make them almost seem to jump out of the book at you.

I was really fascinated with the idea of all flowers having some sort of meaning behind them. Victoria learns the language of the flowers from Elizabeth, the only person that Victoria ever had in her life that truly cared about her. I'd definitely love to learn more about the subject after reading about it in this book.

At its core, this book is about forgiveness and redemption; two things that are sometimes incredibly hard to come by sometimes depending on the situation. 



  1. I just finished this last week and I loved it too. I agree with you about Victoria, she was a wonderful character and my heart broke for her too!

  2. I also really loved this book, although I was wishing for a better ending!

  3. Ok, I'm reading this book ASAP! I've wanted to read it for awhile, and I actually brought it with me to my parents house while I'm visiting for Christmas. Somehow, though, it keeps getting pushed back. A 5 star rating from you, though? I've gotta read it!

  4. Thanks for the review! I'm going to check this book out. I love books that I don't want to end!

  5. This is on my TBR list. I read a great review a while back from another blogger, but I just haven't gotten around to it yet. I love what they've done with the flowers and the meanings. Great review. ;)

  6. Wasn't this book fantastic. I reviewed it a few months ago and loved it. I thought i was following you..idk...but I am now :)

  7. I bought this a while and sort of forgot about it. It sounds so good. I definitely need to keep this in mind!

  8. Very informative post. Thanks for taking the time to share your view with us. massachusetts florist

  9. @rhapsodyinbooks I would love to know what happened to the characters after the book ended!

  10. Oh gosh! I adored this book so much! It was definitely one of my favorites of 2011 - so glad you read it and loved it!

  11. This book is not for the faint of heart. The language of flowers can be used to express negative emotions as well pleasant ones, and Victoria does both. Victoria's voice, as written by Diffenbaugh, is very powerful. We share her experiences almost viscerally, and in some instances it's impossible not to be repulsed by her actions while completely understanding her motivations.

    Diffenbaugh's prose is astonishing. This is one of those books where the reader is torn between wanting to know what happens and reading slowly in order to appreciate her communication using the written word while she teaches us the language of flowers.


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