Nominated by:

Katona József County Library, Kecskemét, Hungary

Pikes Peak Library District, Colorado Springs, USA

San Francisco Public Library, USA

Richland County Public Library, Columbia, USA

Publisher of nominated edition:

Ballantine Books, USA

The Language of Flowers

Vanessa Diffenbaugh      

Longlist 2013

The Victorian language of flowers was used to convey romantic expressions: honeysuckle for devotion, asters for patience, and red roses for love. But for Victoria Jones, it’s been more useful in communicating mistrust and solitude. After a childhood spent in the foster-care system, she is unable to get close to anybody, and her only connection to the world is through flowers and their meanings. Now eighteen and emancipated from the system with nowhere to go, Victoria realizes she has a gift for helping others through the flowers she chooses for them. But an unexpected encounter with a mysterious stranger has her questioning what’s been missing in her life. And when she’s forced to confront a painful secret from her past, she must decide whether it’s worth risking everything for a second chance at happiness.

(From Publisher)

About the Author

Vanessa Diffenbaugh found inspiration in her own experience as a foster mother to write The Language of Flowers. After studying creative writing and education at Stanford University, Vanessa taught art and writing to youth in low-income communities. She and her husband, PK, have three children and live in Cambridge, Massachusetts. The Language of Flowers is her first novel.

Librarians’ Comments

A compelling novel set in the San Francisco Bay Area brings you into the world of one foster child and her struggles and triumphs.

The Language of Flowers is a heartbreaking and redemptive novel about the meaning of flowers, the meaning of family, and the meaning of love.

An enchanting and beautiful tale.

This engaging novel is the story of a person who is alone and emotionally barricaded, but who seeks and finds redemption.

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