Thank you, NetGalley for giving access to an eBook copy of Gardening Can Be Murder: How Poisonous Poppies, Sinister Shovels, and Grim Gardens Have Inspired Mystery Writers by Marta McDowell for free in exchange for an honest review. The eBook I received from NetGalley didn’t have a cover image, so I am using a cover image I have found through google (Fair use under the copyright act sections 29 and 30 under use for a review).
Happy Publication Day
Title: Gardening Can Be Murder: How Poisonous Poppies, Sinister Shovels, and Grim Gardens Have Inspired Mystery Writers
Author: Marta McDowell
Genre: Nonfiction, Gardening, Crime writing
Pages: 216 pages
This fun, engrossing book takes a look at the surprising
influence that gardens and gardening have had on mystery novels and their
authors. With their deadly plants, razor-sharp shears, shady corners, and
ready-made burial sites, gardens make an ideal scene for the perfect murder.
But the outsize influence that gardens and gardening have had on the mystery
genre has been underappreciated. Now, Marta McDowell, a writer and gardener
with a near-encyclopaedic knowledge of the genre, illuminates the many ways in
which our greatest mystery writers, from Edgar Allen Poe to authors on today’s
bestseller lists, have found inspiration in the sinister side of gardens.
At the risk at being put on a watchlist somewhere I requested this book as I find natural poisons fascinating and I would love to visit The Alnwick Garden. No one needs to worry though I have a black thumb and can’t grow anything. I also love looking at the influence gardens and gardening have had on mystery novels and their authors. You can call me odd, but it was a cosy read.
It is clear Marta has researched not only authors but mystery books involving plants, and botanical murder methods. Marta is a writer and a keen gardener its wonderful seeing her passion for both subjects. This book highlights the fact that writers commonly find inspiration in their daily lives. Marta also points out how many writers have used gardening and their knowledge to write sinister mystery novels.
Slight spoiler dear Reader I had no idea that Arthur Conan Doyle studied medicine and botany. I enjoyed the books set up and enjoyed how each chapter covered different aspects of the world of mystery novels. At no point did the book feel overwhelming or information dumpy and was a cosy nonfiction read.