The Garden of Small Beginnings

The Garden of Small Beginnings

Large Print - 2017
Average Rating:
Rate this:
"Lilian Girvan became a single mother when her husband died in a car accident. Three years later, she's getting the hang of it. She can get her two girls to school, go to work, and watch TV. When she's chosen to illustrate a series of boutique vegetable guides, her boss signs her up for a gardening class. Recruiting her kids and her sister to join her, Lilian shows up at the Los Angeles botanical garden feeling out of her element. But what she'll soon discover is that into every life a little sun must shine, whether you want it to or not..."--Back cover.
Publisher: Waterville, Maine :, Thorndike Press, a part of Gale, a Cengage Company,, 2017
Edition: Large print edition
ISBN: 9781432842307
Characteristics: 451 pages (large print) ; 23 cm


From the critics

Community Activity


Add a Comment

Dec 27, 2017

Delightful surprise of a book--a book of love & loss that had me laughing out loud throughout. Witty dialogue and characters that made me want to hang out with them even longer.

Aug 08, 2017

This book is light, quirky and fun! It can be tailored to a late teen audience by slight adjustments on language and adult situations. The supporting characters are awesome in that through the gardening class, they learnt by helping each other they strengthened their own selves. The description of loss of husband is touching, heartfelt and seems to draw from personal experience. Overall, it is a good read!

Jul 27, 2017

What a delightful surprise this book turned out to be! In the Garden of Small Beginnings, Lilian Girvan is attempting to get on with her life after the sudden death of her husband. She enjoys her work as an illustrator but it's a new assignment that finds her taking a gardening class at the local botanical garden, where she finds more than vegetables and flowers. A heartwarming, laugh out loud, and truly touching story.

Jul 20, 2017

Lilian, who is grieving the unexpected death of her husband more than three years earlier, is assigned by her publishing company to take a gardening class to help her learn to illustrate vegetables for a new project. There’s some serious stuff, but lots of hope and humor, too. The novel has an abundance of witty narration, dialogue and observations on human nature, as well as a large cast of delightful characters, such as Lilian’s seven-year-old daughter, who is described as having “the gravitas of a forty-year-old career diplomat.” The book was so hard to put down that it had me losing sleep, risking being late for work, and even reading it while walking (outside. on a busy street. through intersections.)

Jun 01, 2017

4.5 stars
I only bought this book only because I had a "Cartwheel" coupon from Target that made the purchase a bargain $8. Well worth my literary money.

This is a quaint, witty novel about a woman who is still trying to recover and find balance after the death of her husband. It's about complicated family dynamics and unexpected friends. It's about relationships and overcoming fear. And it's about growth and change -- much like the gardening that anchors the book.

I loved the multiple characters and the sharp, bantering dialogue. It made me want to take a gardening class.

A perfect summer novel.

*Language including the Fbomb

LPL_MeredithW Feb 20, 2017

A sweet, charming, and very funny book about a young widow who enrolls in a weekend gardening class, this book is more than the sum of its parts. It’s full of interesting, relatable characters, with a plot that zigs when you think it’s going to zag, and a pretty great recurring joke about canine worms. I read this an ARC, and I wouldn’t be at all surprised to see it made into a movie sooner rather than later. Recommended for fans of Jojo Moyes and Jodi Picoult!


Add Age Suitability

There are no ages for this title yet.


Add a Summary

There are no summaries for this title yet.


Add Notices

There are no notices for this title yet.


Add a Quote

There are no quotes for this title yet.

Explore Further

Browse by Call Number

Subject Headings


Find it at RCPL

To Top