The Care & Handling of Roses with Thorns

roses book

for BlogHer Book Club this month, i got to read Margaret Dilloway’s new book The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns. i was really excited about this book when i first heard about it and it was definitely interesting!

The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns is about a 30-something biology teacher named Gal Garner who suffers from kidney disease.
she tries to live a somewhat normal, albeit boring, life teaching at a private Catholic school and going to her constant doctor appointments.
although her life from the outside can seem a little disappointing, the one thing that she truly lives for is breeding and experimenting with her Hulthemia roses and longing for winning Queen of Show in a major competition.

but her life gets “flipped, turned upside down” when her sulky, 15-year-old niece, Riley, quite literally shows up at her {classroom} doorstep being sent there by her irresponsible older sister.
she is not the little girl Gal once remembered, having grown up so much and been changed by her sister’s poor parenting decisions.

as much as Gal wants to be a good influence on Riley, in many ways Riley helps Gal a lot as well.
one thing i found really interesting about the book is how many times Gal questions her parenting ability and think that she is doing things wrong.
to go from having no kids to having to raise a teenager can be a little shocking i’m sure!
but i think in a lot of ways Gal actually does a fantastic job even with her self-doubts.
i loved seeing both of them grow.

the book was good although i felt it was a little slow at first…
it took me a little while to really get into it.
and even then i was expected a little more shocking revelations from the hints that they would give. but once the news would actually come out about possible drama it never seemed as big of a deal as they made it sound.
{maybe i’m just a drama queen though so that’s why i was disappointed}

i also wish there was a better conclusion at the end.
although it definitely ended happy and i was glad how it turned out, i felt like there wasn’t much resolution besides just wrapping it up so that everyone is happy.
{but again, maybe i’m just a drama queen :)}

i still really like the book and would recommend it to anyone!
it had lots of interesting elements that i never had in a book before so i enjoyed it.
and i definitely learned A LOT about roses that i never knew before!

if you end up reading the book, i would love to hear your thoughts!

This is a paid review for BlogHer Book Club but the opinions expressed are my own.

1 comment:

Mom of A and a said...

That's pretty informative. Thanks for sharing!