The Magic of Flowers
by Roxanne M.

"You can't change your past, but you can look at it with different eyes."

Amanda is a psychologist who specializes in talk-therapy, letting her patients express themselves in an unguarded way. Her newest patient, Tatiana Ayoub, however, has a harder time opening up, fluctuating between wanting to work through her trauma and not sharing. Amanda begins to take a personal interest in Tatiana, curious to know what haunts her. As the two women's therapy sessions continue, they grow closer together, forming a deep and intimate friendship of understanding and healing. What happens when they find out their lives are intertwined more than they thought? How does Amanda's perfume, "Quelques Fleurs," affect those closest to her?

Set against the backdrop of Paris, Roxanne M. deftly weaves psychological intrigue, romance, and modern-day events together to form a tale that meditates on the power of human relationships and trauma. The majority of the story takes place in Amanda's office, which runs the risk of being repetitive and heavy due to the nature of therapy. However, M. succeeds at using these therapy sessions as the vehicle of the story through Tatiana and her animated storytelling. The novel does not treat Tatiana's emotional and abuse issues lightly; rather, the manner in which the issues are presented and discussed allow Tatiana to be in control, something that fellow readers who may have similar issues will appreciate.

Although the book could benefit from light copy-editing and tighter dialogue, the straightforward language, consistent pacing, and likeable characters keep the reader engaged. In addition, M. unfolds the plot in a way that keeps the reader surprised; when it seems that the story may go in one direction it takes a sharp turn—as evidenced in the latter half of the book—that is unexpected but rewarding.

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