Feasting on Phrases: Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen

I read to engage the senses. The sight of crisp black typeset against creamy white, the sound of pages flicking past, the smell of paper and dust and age, the reassuring weight of a novel as it sits in my lap, all enhance the experience of immersing myself into another person’s story. There’s no reason why the fifth sense should be neglected, and so I’ve begun this feature to highlight the food and flavor that serves as a backdrop for some of my favorite novels.

This week I’m spotlighting Garden Spells by Sarah Addison Allen. Allen’s story explores friendship, family, and the fears that can stand in the way of moving on from the pains of the past. Her writing drips with Southern charm, not the least of which comes from her sumptuous descriptions of Claire’s magic-infused cooking.

“She heard a thud and watched an apple roll out of the garden and stop at her feet. She stared at it for a moment. No one in her family ever found anything odd about having a tree that told the future and threw apples at people.”

“…she took a sip of coffee and found it had cinnamon in it, just like Grandma Waverly used to make it.”

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