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A Botanist’s Guide to Flowers and Fatality

The Story

Synopsis from the publisher: A Botanist’s Guide to Flowers and Fatality by Kate Khavari


1920s London isn’t the ideal place for a brilliant woman with lofty ambitions. But research assistant Saffron Everleigh is determined to beat the odds in a male-dominated field at the University College of London. Saffron embarks on her first research study alongside the insufferably charming Dr. Michael Lee, traveling the countryside with him in response to reports of poisonings. But when Detective Inspector Green is given a case with a set of unusual clues, he asks for Saffron’s assistance.

The victims, all women, received bouquets filled with poisonous flowers. Digging deeper, Saffron discovers that the bouquets may be more than just unpleasant flowers— there may be a hidden message within them, revealed through the use of the old Victorian practice of floriography. A dire message, indeed, as each woman who received the flowers has turned up dead.

Alongside Dr. Lee and her best friend, Elizabeth, Saffron trails a group of suspects through a dark jazz club, a lavish country estate, and a glittering theatre, delving deeper into a part of society she thought she’d left behind forever.

Will Saffron be able to catch the killer before they send their next bouquet, or will she find herself with fatal flowers of her own in Kate Khavari’s second intoxicating installment.

My Thoughts: A Botanist’s Guide to Flowers and Fatality

The second novel in Kate Khavari’s Saffron Everleigh Mystery series, where Saffron Everleigh slowly steps into a more independent role while defining herself in a predominantly white male space of academia. A mystery that will have readers racing across historical London, second guessing who it could possibly be as Everleigh and her new research partner dance from one glittering party to the next to figure out who is killing prominent women.

As I mentioned in my review of the first book, my hope for this series was to see Everleigh and her love interest from the first novel, Alexander Ashton, relationship grows as an equal partnership with a bit more steamy romance scenes. I was slightly disappointed in this one when it came to the romance. The POV is from Saffron’s perspective and her new research partner, Doctor Michael Lee. Both start to fall for each other and then enter Alexander Ashton back from his own research project and bit scruffy and wild around the edges. What was so confusing was Khavari drops Lee’s POV and switches to Ashton’s when he gets back. This could’ve been an easy fix by allowing for all three POV’s throughout the entire novel.

A Few More Thoughts

But by the end of the book Saffron takes another path all together, which was another unexpected twist to the story, but leaves us with a possibility of a third book that will feature Ashton and his family. My fingers are tightly crossed this time that we’ll explore his character and see him become more of a feminist character embracing Everleigh’s independence, allowing her, her own autonomy while loving her wealth of knowledge and unique charm.

My continued hope is that as the series progresses Khavari includes a few more women at the University that Everleigh can mentor and find kinship as well as a more diverse cast of characters.

If you love a cozy mystery, where the main character takes on the role of playing detective, and a love triangle romance, wondering which guy Saffron will choose, then A Botanist’s Guide to Flowers and Fatality is one to add to your TBR.

Happy Reading ~ Cece

RATING: ink blotink blotink blot – Satisfyingly Inked

Publication Details

Pub DateISBNPage CountPublisherAge GroupSource & FormatReview Posted Online
6-Jun-23978-1639102785352Crooked Lane BooksAdultNetGalley, Digital ARCJanuary 30, 2023

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Welcome Reader!

I’m Cecelia and I’m so glad you’re here! You’ll find honest reviews, book recommendations, along with other bookish essentials. So happy you stopped by!

– C

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