April 15, 2024

The Twilight Garden

By Sara Nisha Adams
The author of The Reading List returns with another tale exploring the power of a shared interest as a catalyst for connection—this time, a neglected community garden.
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A maxim popularized by the Robert Frost poem “Mending Wall” counsels that “good fences make good neighbors.” However, in Sara Nisha Adams’ sophomore novel, The Twilight Garden, nothing could be further from the truth.

In a small neighborhood in northern London sits a neglected community garden that spans two homes. A peculiar feature of these two houses is that their deeds state that the garden must be shared and no fence can be built between them. Alas, apart from the garden, the only thing the warring residents of these homes have in common is a deep antipathy towards one another. Tired of the way his neighbor Bernice swans around as though she owns his home in addition to her own, Winston decides to engage in a literal turf war: Nudged along by mysterious photos that depict the garden as it was decades earlier, he vows to rehabilitate it and leave his mark on their shared space. Winston soon gains an unexpected helper in Bernice’s young son and eventually Bernice herself deigns to get her hands dirty and gets involved in the garden, too. As the erstwhile enemies learn to work together, their garden becomes a place where something more beautiful than flowers—friendship—blooms.

With The Twilight Garden, Adams revisits the thematic bedrock of her beloved debut novel, The Reading List, exploring the power of a shared interest as a catalyst for connection. Alongside Winston and Bernice’s story in 2018, Adams interweaves the history of another set of neighbors and the communal garden’s origins in the 1970s, cultivating a rich community of characters who burrow their way under your skin and tug at your heartstrings. This story uplifts and acts as a balm to the soul, reminding the reader that family is not just something we are born into but also something we can grow with others. This is a perfect choice for fans of languidly paced, relaxing reads and rewards those who are patient enough to see its storylines and characters fully blossom.

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The Twilight Garden

The Twilight Garden

By Sara Nisha Adams
William Morrow
ISBN 9780063025325

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