Whorticulture was an intriguing title and as I have read quite extensively on the history of prostitution in the UK and Australia, I was interested to read something from an American perspective. I received this as a review title through LibraryThing.
As a collection of interlaced short stories, this didn't disappoint, however I wasn't all that sure that the language of flowers played as strong a role as it may have.
The collection certainly highlighted the plight of women in this particular age and location. To be regarded as little more than goods and chattels to be acquired, traded and abused was not unique to America nor this period in social history but the added frisson created with the issue of slavery and the community pressures brought about by the effects of the discovery of gold gave the stories a particular regional feel.
Hotel Noir is most certainly a tale of sadness, loss, friendship and suspicion, murder and mystery. The languid heat, the jaded locals and fading glory of the old favorite hotel all combine to cloud the perspective of the reader as to how it is that our 'hero' Francis (an American author whose profile is apparently also somewhat jaded) fits in this strange landscape.
There was certainly more happening than met the eye - the little snippets of information that were left about the place like discarded glasses in the bar teased at the reader, imploring them to go on further into the morass that was this man's private life.
Intrigued to the end....
A Widow in Waiting" had the potential to wallow in mushy, bodice ripping crud that would have bored the socks off me.... but it didn't.
It felt as if it was meticulously researched and correctly placed in the historical timeline, yet it swiftly left that path and veered into the beginnings of a subtly disguised alternative Ireland where a group people had come to live together to protect themselves from discrimination based on their 'powers'. Guess its a bit "Wizards vs Muggles" but the differences were more subtle.
An engaging set of characters, multiple plot layers that enriched the basic storyline, action and adventure - it left you wanting to find out where the story would head next as there were definitely little breadcrumb trails left to entice you further in Glenscar.
I received this review copy through Members Giveway at Librarything