I read Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire for a panel I was moderating, and let me tell you, I never in a million years would have picked this book up but it ended up being a Top 10 favorite in 2009.
Okay, so here’s the synopsis: Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire is about Lila Nova, a recently divorced woman, who on a late night walk, discovers a laundromat that doubles as a greenhouse. Lila gets to know the owner, Armand, who is growing extremely rare plants. He takes her under his wing, but in the meantime she meets a gardener, David, who steals her heart. Her loyalty is torn, and she ultimately betrays Armand by telling David about what Armand has hidden in a room in the laundromat. Lila has to travel to the rain forests of Mexico to right the wrong she created. Got it? Good, now for the fun part.
I have never read a book this fun or this humorous. Humor in writing is completely lost on me, which is weird since I think I have a pretty good sense of humor. But whatever! I’ve never laughed out loud while reading, but I did while reading this book. I would stop reading to soak in the story and the humor and bizarre situation that Lila always found herself in.
There’s a little blurb at the beginning of each chapter that tells about a particular plant or something or other that Lila might encounter. Here’s a blurb at the beginning of one of the chapters. It’s entitled, “Scorpions”.
Disgusting as it may seem, there are over two thousand species of scorpion. Most varieties have a claw and three to four sets of usable walking-legs. To make matters worse, the venom of the scorpion, which appears to come from its tail, actually comes out of its anus. Male scorpions court females by doing a dance called the “promenade à deux.” After this dance, the male kisses the female and at the same time injects a tiny bit of venom into her mouth, just enough to paralyze her for a short time, so he can have sex with her. I don’t know about you, but this scenario sounds a lot like a guy dropping a bit of Rohypnol into his date’s drink at a bar. Men are all the same. Women, on the other hand, are not all the same, and when two scorpions are finished mating and the venom has worn off, the male must leave quickly or the female will set a plate and eat him for dinner.
Armand is a character that you won’t soon forget. He’s the perfect mixture of mentor, friend, and father. He has a dry sense of humor and he’s rather eccentric. He took the story to the next level.
I can’t say enough good things about Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire. I loved it, it’s going into my permanent collection, and I think you should make sure you buy a copy today.
Rating: 95 out of 100
The Book Maven (she loved it too!)
Book source: I received this book to prep for the panel I moderated.
And one more thing? If you click on one of the Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire links and buy something from Amazon, I’ll make a commission! Mwahahahaha!! Maybe with the pennies I make I’ll be able to call someone who cares.
You can thank the FTC for this disclosure!