Title: Season of the Dragonflies
Author: Sarah Creech
Publisher: William Morrow (HarperColliins)
Release Date: August 12, 2014
Acquired Via: TLC Book Tours
As beguiling as the novels of Alice Hoffman, Adriana Trigiani, Aimee Bender, and Sarah Addison Allen, Season of the Dragonflies is a story of flowers, sisters, practical magic, old secrets, and new love, set in the Blue Ridge Mountains.
For generations, the Lenore women have manufactured a perfume unlike any other, and guarded the unique and mysterious ingredients. Their perfumery, hidden in the quiet rolling hills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, creates one special elixir that secretly sells for millions of dollars to the world’s most powerful—movie stars, politicians, artists, and CEOs. The Lenore’s signature perfume is actually the key to their success.
Willow, the coolly elegant Lenore family matriarch, is the brains behind the company. Her gorgeous, golden-haired daughter Mya is its heart. Like her foremothers, she can “read” scents and envision their power. Willow’s younger daughter, dark-haired, soulful Lucia, claims no magical touch, nor does she want any part of the family business. She left the mountains years ago to make her own way. But trouble is brewing. Willow is experiencing strange spells of forgetfulness. Mya is plotting a coup. A client is threatening blackmail. And most ominously, the unique flowers used in their perfume are dying.
Whoever can save the company will inherit it. Though Mya is the obvious choice, Lucia has begun showing signs of her own special abilities. And her return to the mountains—heralded by a swarm of blue dragonflies—may be the answer they all need.
Praise for Season of the Dragonflies
"Season of the Dragonflies is a magical, romantic, and riveting novel. You won’t be able to put it down, and as soon as you finish reading, you’ll begin waiting for Sarah Creech’s next book. What a dazzling new talent!" — Nina de Gramont, author of Meet Me at the River
When I was given the option to review Sarah Creech's debut, Season of the Dragonflies, I jumped at it. I know I read a lot of YA and "genre fiction", but I also have a deep love for "literary fiction". (I'm using quotation marks because those aren't my labels, as I enjoy them all.) Season of the Dragonflies did not disappoint, and I read it all in one sitting while suffering from insomnia. It has everything promised in the description, and so much more.
At its core, Season of the Dragonflies is a book about family and coming home. One of the main characters, Lucia, makes her way back home to the Blue Ridge Mountains after her life and marriage in New York City has failed. Mya has to deal with the repercussions of her mistakes and deal with the return of her little sister. Willow is facing the ruin of her family's empire due to the mistakes that they have all made. Of course, this is the perfect fodder for a good story because of the tension.
Lucia is my favorite character. She went to NYC to try to make it as an actress without her family name or money holding her up and failed. She has to come to terms with her divorce and unemployment, as well as being the "ordinary" Lenore daughter. I really liked watching her start to take up for herself and figure out what she wanted.
Since I was up all night reading Season of the Dragonflies, I think that may have heightened my reading experience. The book has a bit of magical realism with walking plants and their supernatural scent. There was an entire backstory about how the plants ended up in the family and how they came to be used for perfume. Willow's grandmother, Serena Lenore, is in the prologue and would have been my favorite, I'm sure, had her part been longer.
The one issue that I had with the book was minor, but it has been niggling in the back of my mind. Season of the Dragonflies has these strong women, but the importance of their men kind of overshadowed everything about them at the end. SPOILER: The flowers were only saved when Lucia screwed a guy in the field and got pregnant, and Mya had to give up all of her powers to save Luke? *shrugs* I still liked the book.
Season of the Dragonflies was a lovely read with just enough magic and fantasy to keep me glued to the pages. It's one of my favorite pieces of adult literature in the past few years, and I have already been recommending it to my friends from my old book club. I am definitely looking forward to Creech's future work.
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About the Author
Born and raised in the foothills of the Blue Ridge Mountains, Sarah Creech grew up in a house full of women who told stories about black cloud visions and other premonitions. Her work has appeared in storySouth, Literary Mama, Aroostook Review, Glass, and Glimmer Train. She received an MFA in 2008 and now teaches English and creative writing at Queens University of Charlotte. She lives in North Carolina with her two children and her husband, a poet. This is her first novel.
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Follow the Tour
Season of the Dragonflies Tour Schedule
Tuesday, August 12th
No More Grumpy Bookseller
Wednesday, August 13th
Always With a Book
Thursday, August 14th
Read. Write. Repeat.
Friday, August 15th
Monday, August 18th
Svetlana’s Reads and Views
Tuesday, August 19th
Wednesday, August 20th
Peeking Between the Pages
Thursday, August 21st
From the TBR Pile
Monday, August 25th
Tuesday, August 26th
Wednesday, August 27th
What She Read …
Thursday, August 28th
Bookfoolery and Babble
Friday, August 29th
To satisfy FTC guidelines, I am disclosing that I received a copy of the novel from the publisher through TLC Book Tours in exchange for an unbiased review. It has in no way affected the outcome. All expressed opinions are awesome, honest, and completely my own.