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The Language of Flowers

A Novel

by Vanessa Diffenbaugh

The Language of Flowers
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  • First Published:
    Aug 2011, 336 pages
    Paperback:
    Apr 2012, 352 pages

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There are currently 34 reader reviews for The Language of Flowers
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Jean N. (New Richmond, OH) (05/31/11)

The Language of Flowers
When I finished this book, it was hard to let go of Victoria. I wanted to keep walking down the road with her. She is a character that I'll always remember.

What a valuable, heartfelt book. One of those books that stands heads above so many others- it is unforgettable. I want to stand up and cheer for Victoria and for this book.

Thank you Vanessa Diffenbaugh.
Lynn R. (Wautoma, WI) (05/31/11)

The Languagae of Flowers
I feel that this is one of the best books that I have written a review for. I was always interested in the way that Victoria responded to life situatiions after having been a fostor child most of her life. I feel that it brought out the insecurities and lack of trust in general that foster kids develop when they become adults. Of course not all foster kids have bad lives, and Victoria did not have a bad life, just not a good one, some of which she brought on herself because of these insecurities.

The book tells a story of one foster child and how not being able to trust in humankind can cause some sad mistakes and also how love can change things. I would recommend this book for just about anyone, it would be a great book for book clubs.
Power Reviewer Diane S. (Batavia, IL) (05/31/11)

The Language of Flowers
From its wonderful cover (simple but elegant) to the wonderful characters this book is one that I enjoyed immensely. It is such a unique concept to use the language of flowers as a form of communication and I liked learning the meanings of these flowers. All of us have baggage from the past we try to deal with and it was heartbreaking yet joyful to watch Victoria struggle and than to grow as a person and someone who is able to accept and give love. Readers of Anne River Siddons, Elizabeth Berg and Anita Shreve will love this book.
Diane D. (Blairstown, NJ) (05/30/11)

!
This was a very well-written book, but the subject matter made it hard for me to read...especially at first. Our granddaughter was in a group home for several years, before she was adopted (around the age of 13) by a good family. We're just thankful we were able to keep connected to her, even though it's been difficult. She had many of the same types of problems Victoria had, and she's still dealing with them, even though she's in her late 20s and living on her own.

I wanted to read this book BECAUSE of the subject. I wasn't surprised at what I read, since we've been through a lot of it; and I hope this book can help the "system" change some, but it probably won't. What it will do is help other people understand what these kids go through...something I think is a "Good Thing". I don't remember reading anything about counselling, but maybe each state is different as to whether they do much of that.

The one thing that bothered me, and a lot of books do it, was the jumping back & forth between "then & now", though I understand that it probably was done to compare what was happening at different stages of Victoria's life.
MaryEllen K. (Albany, NY) (05/28/11)

The Language of Flowers
I was pulled right into this fascinating novel because of the beautiful writing style, the complexity of Victoria's character, and the mesmerizing story that unfolded. A lovely bonus included at the end is a Dictionary of Flowers and their meanings. If I could make a bouquet for the author, Vanessa Diffenbaugh, I would fill it with bouvardia (enthusiasm), lisianthus (appreciation), and bellflower (gratitude).
Anne G. (Austin, TX) (05/27/11)

The Language of Flowers
Victoria is a difficult child evidenced by her aversion to touch and her unwillingness to communicate but there is ample explanation for her characteristics as we read into the book and understand her history in the foster system. It's no wonder she puts up barriers and refuses to love when she has been rejected and returned to the system so many times. I was almost instantly drawn to this character and her story.

Generally I don't like books that mix up the chronology of the story line but in this book it added an element of suspense as I wondered what happened to make Victoria the girl she is in present day; I liked it in this case. I also love the language of flowers and I was so happy to find it detailed so carefully in a book that is not a Victorian romance.

I would summarize by saying this a wonderful story that speaks to the heart and feeds the brain. It is white carnation.
Mindy. (Alabama) (05/25/11)

Language of Flowers
Surprisingly, this heart-warming story of relationships was hard to put down! The heroine, Victoria, reaches out and grabs you from the very beginning and you are left wondering what happened to her, what will happen to her, and how she finds the courage and resilience she displays in facing life's difficulties. As a foster child, she lacks many of the coping skills that most of us have, yet she not only survives but thrives in her own way. I highly recommend this book for book clubs, young adults, and other adults.
Jane H. (Indianola, IA) (05/24/11)

The Language of Flowers
Constantly rejected and mistreated in foster homes, Victoria, at the age of ten has become mean and vicious; difficult to handle. She is given one more chance when she is taken to live with Elizabeth. However, mistrust and jealousy on her part, cause her to be removed, and once again tossed into the foster care. On her own at the age of eighteen, she learns "that the unattached, the unwanted, the unloved could grow to give love as lushly as anyone else". This is a heartbreaking, beautifully written book!

Beyond the Book:
  Victoria's Dictionary of Flowers

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