Like a Flower in Bloom  -     By: Siri Mitchell
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Like a Flower in Bloom

Bethany House / 2015 / Paperback

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Product Description

For years Charlotte Withersby has worked as an assistant to her father, an eminent English botanist. As she approaches the old age of twenty-four, her father pushes her out into society, swayed by an uncle who believes God's only two roles for women are marriage and motherhood. When one of the Withersbys' colonial correspondents, Edward Trimble, returns to England, he's drafted as the new assistant so Charlotte is free to marry. This suits Edward's plans quite well, since the last thing he wants to do is reunite with the family he is ashamed to call his own.

Though Edward proves himself vexingly capable on the job, Charlotte won't surrender the job without a fight, and schemes with her best friend to regain her position. Perhaps if a proposal seems imminent, Charlotte's father will see his error and ask her to return. Charlotte tries to make headway in her town's social life, but reveals herself to be unaware of all the intricacies of polite society. Though Edward pitches in, tutoring her in society's expectations, she just seems to make things worse. And the more she comes to know of her father's assistant, the more trouble she has imagining life without him. Caught in a trap of her own making and seeing the hopelessness of her prospects, will Charlotte get to keep her work or will she have to cede her heart?

Product Information

Format: Paperback
Number of Pages: 384
Vendor: Bethany House
Publication Date: 2015
Dimensions: 8.50 X 5.50 (inches)
ISBN: 0764210378
ISBN-13: 9780764210372
Availability: In Stock

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Publisher's Description

He Stole the Work She Loved.
Will She Let Him Steal Her Heart as Well?

It's all her uncle's fault. For years Charlotte Withersby has been free to pursue her love of plants and flowers by assisting her botanist father. But now that she's reached the old age of twenty-two, an intrusive uncle has convinced her father that Charlotte's future--the only proper future for a woman--is to be a wife and mother, not a scholar.

Her father is so dependent on her assistance that Charlotte believes he'll soon change his mind...and then Edward Trimble shows up. A long-time botany correspondent in the South Pacific, Trimble arrives ready to step in as assistant so that Charlotte can step out into proper society--a world that baffles her with its unwritten rules, inexplicable expectations, and confounding fashion.

Things aren't perfectly smooth between Trimble and her father, so Charlotte hatches a last gasp plan. She'll pretend such an interest in marriage that the thought of losing her will make her father welcome her back. Only things go quickly awry, and she realizes that the one man who recognizes her intelligence is also the person she's most angry with: Edward Trimble, her supposed rival. Suddenly juggling more suitors than she knows what to do with, Charlotte is caught in a trap of her own making. Will she have no choice but to leave her beloved flowers behind?

Author Bio

Siri Mitchell has written nearly a dozen novels, three of which were named Christy Award finalists. A graduate of the University of Washington with a business degree, she has worked in many levels of government and lived on three continents. She and her family currently reside in the D.C. metro area. Learn more at www.sirimitchell.com.

Product Reviews

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  1. Davenport,Iowa
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    witty
    June 10, 2015
    Thereadmaster
    Davenport,Iowa
    Age: 45-54
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    This book seemed to start a little slow for me but it is so worth finishing. Charlotte and Edward are so great together. Charlotte knows so much about flowers and nothing about men or how to act in society. Charlotte has helped her father write about and catalog all the flowers that they collect and study since she was 14 and her mother died. She does not think about marriage until her uncle insists it is time for her to find a husband. She does not want to go into society but then Edward shows up and he takes over all of her duties with her father. How will this end? You will need to read to find out. It is funny and romantic and a fun book. I received this book from Bethany House for a fair and honest opinion.
  2. Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Quirky, Witty and Altogether Fun!
    April 10, 2015
    Beth
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: female
    Quality: 5
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Charlotte Withersbys dearest wish is to study her beloved blooms as a botanist. She wants to be left alone by her uncle, society and most certainly by her fathers new assistant, an interloper named Mr. Trimble. In a time when womens views and expertise in botany are not given credence, Charlotte must rely upon the name of her father, a well-known botanist, to publish her own work. When her uncle and father insist that she take on society to snare a husband, Charlotte is sure Mr. Trimbles lackluster help will soon bring her back to her position as her fathers assistant and put all of the marriage nonsense to rest. What Charlotte doesnt account for is finding actual suitors, nor is she prepared for the questions that be thrust into society will bring is her merit in her work or does it lie within herself?

    Siri always chooses to write about historical elements that are usually not anything that Ive read about in another novel. She is a brave author in the sense that she chooses to tackle story elements and character traits that are not widely used. In this case, it was the science of botany. The botany details are fascinating and add a lot of depth to Charlottes character development and intellectual tendencies. Charlottes quirks are so unique to her character. Siris characters and settings are never the norm, which is why her books continue to be a delight to read.

    This novel is more on the humorous side, and nowhere is that more evident than in the main character, Charlotte. She is quirky, and if I may, sometimes a bit odd. At first, I wasnt sure how to take her, but as I read on, she grew on me. There is a possibility that she may not be for everyone; there were times that I was exasperated with her, but at the same time, she is extremely refreshing. She is everything that society is not she is blunt, unpretentious and lacks the knowledge of all of the social niceties that are expected of her. In her heart of hearts, she wants to take care of her father and wants to be valued for her intellectual abilities, and moreover, wants herself to be enough, no more, no less.

    There were also some compelling side characters present in this story. I loved her new-found companion, Miss Templeton - the scenes with her were full of humor, and I loved how she took Charlotte under her wing and had a feeling that she found Charlotte refreshing as well. Their friendship and back-and-forth banter was entertaining to read. Her uncle, her self-named chaperone during all of her social outings is rather enigmatic at first, but as the story progresses, his character and background are revealed, and I was pleasantly surprised by the depth in the interactions between him and Charlotte.

    Mr. Trimble may not be the conventional hero, but I felt that he fit well within the story, and his character is very endearing. Despite being declared the enemy by Miss Templeton, its soon very clear that he isnt the usurper that he appears to be and that he has his own reasons for becoming an assistant to a reclusive botanist. I wanted more interaction between him and Charlotte, and while the enemies turned lovers storyline sometimes wears on me, it works well in this story, and provides some humorous and also heartfelt exchanges between him and Charlotte.

    Whenever I pick a Siri Mitchell novel I know that I am in for something unique and fascinating. She always takes on topics that stand out, this story lives up to the standard Ive come to expect in Siris novels. Although Ive enjoyed all of her novels, this one definitely stands out as one Ive enjoyed most. With a quirky main character, a sweet romance and a fascinating look at the world of botany, Like a Flower in Bloom is a favorite read of the year so far.
  3. Indiana
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    Delightful!
    March 1, 2015
    Cara Putman
    Indiana
    Age: 35-44
    Gender: female
    I thoroughly enjoyed this book. Told in first person, it is from the perspective of a young woman who has been sequestered at home helping her father with his botany work. But now her uncle and father have decided she should be married and someone else has come in to take her place. She feels completely displaced and out of sorts. The book tells the story of her endeavors to convince her father of how much he needs her while making men fall in love with her.

    I loved reading this book, but what resonated with me most was the heroine's deep sense of displacement. How many of us have felt like we just don't fit no matter which way we turn? Yet through the pages of this story, I was reminded that God does indeed have a place for each of us. And that He turns our stories into things of beauty, even when there are a few valleys along the way. I also enjoyed looking into botany in 1850s England. There is enough richness to delight the most discriminating historical reader. And the romance is sweet and perfect.
  4. Age: 25-34
    Gender: Female
    5 Stars Out Of 5
    Like a Flower in Bloom - Siri Mitchell (4.5-5 Stars)
    February 23, 2015
    Brittany_BnBblog
    Age: 25-34
    Gender: Female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 5
    Meets Expectations: 5
    Siri Mitchell's Like a Flower in Bloom focuses on Charlotte Withersby and her father, who wrote the preeminent books on Englands botanical specimens. Living in the patriarchal society of the 1850s, Charlotte continues her failed attempts at publishing her discoveries under her own name, something that is considered unacceptable in the emerging field of botany. Her uncle and father join forces to persuade Charlotte that she should set aside her plants and scientific endeavors to pursue a husband and join society. While she is convinced that she remains indispensable to her father's work, Charlotte's role is soon occupied by one of her father's correspondents from New Zealand. Filled with quirky and amusing characters determined to turn Charlotte into a marriageable woman of society, Like a Flower in Bloom proves that all of God's creations are unique and perfectly made for their God-given work.

    Ms. Mitchell's works have become an emerging part of my reading list over the last several years. Honestly, I am not a huge fan of her earlier books, but have found that her writing and characters have substantially improved over time, particularly in the case of Unrivaled, The Messenger, and She Walks in Beauty. I was initially drawn to Like a Flower in Bloom based on its relatively unique premise involving a woman botanist in the mid-nineteenth century. In reading the first part of the book, I found it to be surprisingly similar to Julie Klassen's The Apothecary's Daughter and Elizabeth Camden's The Rose of Winslow Street. Also, I discovered a rather substantial editing problem in the earlier part of the book that could easily distract or confuse readers. However, I found myself increasingly enjoying the book as I progressed through it. The last several chapters presented some of the most interesting material of the entire work and I would have very much liked to see how those aspects of the storyline could play out over time and in further detail.

    Overall, I believe that Like a Flower in Bloom offers one of the strongest examples of Ms. Mitchell's work.

    Thanks!

    Brittany at the Books and Biscuits Blog
  5. Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    4 Stars Out Of 5
    I Enjoyed It.
    February 11, 2015
    Callie
    Age: 18-24
    Gender: female
    Quality: 4
    Value: 4
    Meets Expectations: 4
    I have read several of Siri Mitchell's books, and I have to say, I love how well-researched her historical fiction is! "Like A Flower In Bloom" was no exception. This book follows the story of Charlotte Withersby, a young lady who aspires to be a botanist, as her uncle and father decide it is time for her to put botany aside and find a husband. Mr Trimble takes over as botany assistant to her father, and she soon concocts a plan, along with a new friend, to get rid of Mr. Trimble.

    This book was set in an era a couple generations from Jane Austen, but to me it has that same sort of feel as on of Jane Austen's books as we follow Miss Withersby as she enters "society" in England. I also loved the romantic maneuvering and human nature angles that Mitchell included in this story.

    Although I found myself getting irritated at Miss Withersby's arrogance at times (maybe she was just supposed to be naive, but her character also seemed a bit arrogant to me), I still thought she was pretty lovable. I wish that through the story she had recognized that maybe she doesn't know best about everything, but I still thought the ending was satisfying.

    I found myself laughing throughout the book, and I think it was a very enjoyable read! If you like historical fiction or Jane-Austen-esque fiction, be sure to check this one out!

    Note: I received a copy of this book for free from the publisher in exchange for this review. This is my honest opinion.
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