First of all, I really like Franz Ferdinand. Their latest CD makes me want to have a party--or workout (seriously, they make working out and running so much better).
Anyway, I've been reading everywhere about Margot Berwin's Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire. Is the hype justified?
Hmm, well, isn't that a pretty cover? No, just kidding, the book was interesting and I really enjoyed the focus on tropical plants, along with their mystical qualities. It's probably just so different (a bit of magic realism combined with plant lore) that it stands out.
Here's the plot: Lila is a recently divorced, youngish, NY advertising executive. She meets a hottttttt plant man who sells her a tropical plant. She discovers that she loves plants, which leads her to this random laundromat filled with plants--including the nine plants of desire. A few mistakes later, the plants are stolen and Lila must make it up to the laundromat owner, Armand. So they travel to Mexico to locate replacements and Lila learns more about the plants and realizes how full her life can be.
I liked the book; however, I think you can see where plotting and symbols tighter. Still, Berwin shows a lot of promise and definitely offered up a unique twist with her focus on tropical plants.
On a side note, it's been pretty darn hot here and I don't have air conditioning (by choice--I love being warm!), so I could really feel her descriptions of the jungle and heat.