First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen

January 20th, 2015 kimbacaffeinate Review 69 Comments

20th Jan
First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen
First Frost
by Sarah Addison Allen
Series: Waverley Family #2
Published by: St. Martin
Genres: Magical Realism
Source: Publisher
Purchase: Amazon
Goodreads
Rating: One StarOne StarOne StarOne Star

From the New York Times bestselling author of Garden Spells comes a story of the Waverley family, in a novel as sparkling as the first dusting of frost on new-fallen leaves...It's October in Bascom, North Carolina, and autumn will not go quietly. As temperatures drop and leaves begin to turn, the Waverley women are made restless by the whims of their mischievous apple tree... and all the magic that swirls around it. But this year, first frost has much more in store. Claire Waverley has started a successful new venture, Waverley’s Candies. Though her handcrafted confections—rose to recall lost love, lavender to promote happiness and lemon verbena to soothe throats and minds—are singularly effective, the business of selling them is costing her the everyday joys of her family, and her belief in her own precious gifts. Sydney Waverley, too, is losing her balance. With each passing day she longs more for a baby— a namesake for her wonderful Henry. Yet the longer she tries, the more her desire becomes an unquenchable thirst, stealing the pleasure out of the life she already has. Sydney’s daughter, Bay, has lost her heart to the boy she knows it belongs to…if only he could see it, too. But how can he, when he is so far outside her grasp that he appears to her as little more than a puff of smoke? When a mysterious stranger shows up and challenges the very heart of their family, each of them must make choices they have never confronted before. And through it all, the Waverley sisters must search for a way to hold their family together through their troublesome season of change, waiting for that extraordinary event that is First Frost. Lose yourself in Sarah Addison Allen's enchanting world and fall for her charmed characters in this captivating story that proves that a happily-ever-after is never the real ending to a story. It’s where the real story begins.

I was ecstatic when I discovered that First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen was to be the second book about the Waverley Family. I discovered Garden Spells quite by accident back in 2011 pre-blog and fell in love with both the book and the author. It has remained among my favorite books and opened the door to magical realism. First Frost was everything I could have hoped for and more.

Five reasons to snuggle up with First Frost

  • If you are a fan of Allen and like me, you hold Garden Spells as your favorite of her books; you are in for a delightful treat. Once again, we are back in Bascom, North Carolina and spending time with Sydney, Claire and Bay. Beautifully written with all the magic of Garden Spells, First Frost displayed all the reasons I fell in love with Sarah Addison Allen. I loved this glimpse into their lives and hope Allen revisits them again.
  • Magical realism lives and breathes within the Waverley family home. Pendland Street, the apple tree and old Queen Anne home are magic and I loved the subtle way the tree and house voice their opinion.
  • Being a part of Claire and Sydney’s life again was exciting. Sydney still has her gift with hair and Claire with baking. A lot has happened since we last visited these sisters, their spouses and friends. Allen made it feel like coming home after a long spell away. A cup of good tea, a little bread and I felt warm and fuzzy. I quickly became caught up in both of their struggles.
  • Bay is a teen now and very much a misfit with her gift of knowing where things and people belong. I loved how the author weaved in Bay’s story with threads from her mother’s past. I adore Bay and her calm acceptance of who she is. Unlike her mother, she embraces her heritage, and is comfortable in her own skin, even if being a teenager especially a Waverley sucks. The characters emotions, actions and interactions have a genuine feel to them. I honestly can say I identify and connected to each of them.
  • There is a stranger in town, and things are off for each of the Waverley women. The time between the last harvest and awaiting the next cycle in the apple’s tree brings unease and unrest into the Waverley’s life. Sydney wants to conceive, and Claire’s bout of fame has not been all that. Bay struggles with her unrequited feelings for a young man and her desire to help him find where he belongs. All of the threads are beautifully blended to create a story that held me captive. I love how balanced First Frost unfolded with each perspectives. The author has this uncanny ability to make me relax and savory events.

My time with First Frost was magical, and I sincerely home Allen takes me back to Pendland Street again!

About Sarah Addison Allen

New York Times Bestselling novelist Sarah Addison Allen brings the full flavor of her southern upbringing to bear on her fiction — a captivating blend of magical realism, heartwarming romance, and small-town sensibility. Her big break occurred in 2007 with the publication of her first mainstream novel, Garden Spells, a modern-day fairy tale about an enchanted apple tree and the family of North Carolina women who tend it. Booklist called Allen’s accomplished debut “spellbindingly charming.” The novel became a Barnes & Noble Recommends selection, and then a New York Times Bestseller. Allen continues to serve heaping helpings of the fantastic and the familiar in fiction she describes as “Southern-fried magic realism.” Clearly, it’s a recipe readers are happy to eat up as fast as she can dish it out.

Reading this book contributed to these challenges:

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About Kimberly
Kimberly is a coffee loving book addict who reads and listens to fictional stories in all genres. She's a self-professed Whovian, as well as a Supernatural, and Sherlock Holmes junkie, She enjoys sharing books, tips, recipes and hosting the Sunday Post. The coffee is always on and she is ready to chat... Twitter | Facebook | Instagram

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69 Responses to “First Frost by Sarah Addison Allen”

  1. Alise

    The book and the author are new to me but that cover is so gorgeous and I love a story that you can easily fall into. Plus the fact you can connect to each character sounds amazing, it’s so great when that happens in books. Very nice review!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I really enjoy this author and have enjoyed everything she has published

  2. Trish

    I hadn’t even read the first book (but I will now!) and I still loved it. The characters are fab, the magic is fun and it’s just so heart warming. I totally agree with all 5 of your reasons, it’s a great one to cozy down with.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      So glad you loved it, and yes Garden Spell is my favorite book

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I recommend Garden Spells first Mary, although they work alone..

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Thanks Sophia..magical realism is such a cool genre, and I recommend Garden Spells first.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I loved Garden Spell and if your library has it..it is worth the trip

    • kimbacaffeinate

      If you haven’t tried magical realism you are in for a treat 🙂

    • kimbacaffeinate

      It is the type of story you slip back into and time has passed for them as well. I would just read a few reviews and the synopsis to refresh your memory.

  3. Heidi

    I love Sarah, but I am still waiting for one of her books to totally capture me like Garden Spells or Sugar Queen. I enjoyed this one, but the whole story line with the stranger was just icky. I didn’t like it, and I felt like it ended with a lot of loose ends. I certainly wanted more of Bay’s story. I hope there are going to be several more in this series.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I am hoping the openness means we will revisit again. Agreed that the stranger was a dark thread.

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I loved Garden Spell the first and it my absolute favorite by her

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Ooo I hope you have Garden Spell in that pile ..it is my favorite. Enjoy them!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Magical realism is cool and Allen can spin a tale. Thanks Tyler!

  4. Samantha

    So glad to see that you liked this one! I loved Garden Spells so I’m def. going to have to eventually read this. Thanks for the review!

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Glad you loved Garden Spell and hope you enjoy visiting them again Samantha

  5. Rashika

    I haven’t read any of Sarah’s books but I’ve heard so many good things about them and have been meaning to give her a shot! I know Garden Spells comes highly recommended so I think that’s where I will start! I am glad you thought this was a great follow up to the book! 🙂

    Lovely review, Kimba! 😀

    • kimbacaffeinate

      Oh I hope you grab Garden Spells Sharon…I love magical realism

  6. sharonda

    I read Garden Spells back when it first came out and for the life of me I couldn’t remember the name of the book or the author and it bugged the heck out of me because it was so good. I lost print copy when I moved so thank you for this review Kim, now I can go back get Garden Spells and read the other books too 😉

    • kimbacaffeinate

      I have done that! I am glad I could reunite you..happy reading