- Publisher: Random House USA Inc
- Format: Hardback | 220 pages
- Dimensions: 155mm x 236mm x 33mm | 454g
- Publication date: 29 January 2013
- Publication City/Country: New York, NY
- ISBN 10: 030790752X
- ISBN 13: 9780307907523
In her best-selling debut, "Hothouse Flower and the""Nine Plants of Desire," Margot Berwin brought us to the rain forests of Mexico--to a land of shamans, spirit animals, and snake charmers--in the search for nine rare and valuable plants. Now, with her hotly anticipated second novel, Berwin takes us somewhere darker: deep into the bayous of Louisiana, to a world of fortune-tellers, soothsayers, and potent elixirs. "Scent of Darkness" is a magical, seductive story about the power of scent, and about what happens when a perfume renders a young woman irresistible. Evangeline grows up understanding the extraordinary effects of fragrance. Her grandmother Louise is a gifted aromata, a master of scent-making and perfume. When Eva was a girl, Louise carefully explained that lavender under her pillow would make her dream of the man she would marry; eucalyptus would make her taller; almandine, fatter; and jasmine, Louise promised, would wrap her life in a mystery. When Eva is eighteen, Louise leaves her the ultimate gift--a scent created just for her. The small perfume vial is accompanied by a note in Louise's slanted script: "Do not remove the stopper, Evangeline, unless you want everything in your life to change." From the moment Eva places a drop--the essence of fire, leather, rose, and jasmine--on her neck, men dance closer to her, women bury their noses deep into her hair, even the cats outside her bedroom cry to be near her. After a lifetime spent blending into the background, Eva is suddenly the object of intense desire to everyone around her. Strangers follow her down the street; a young boy appears at her door asking for a favor; and two men, one kind and good, the other dark and seductive, fall deeply, madly in love with her. As her greatest gift becomes an unbearable curse, Eva must uncover the secret of her scent and the message her grandmother, the woman who loved her most, wanted to tell her. A bewitching tale of love, blood, power, and magic, "Scent of Darkness" is a wildly inventive novel that will seduce the reader's every sense.
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Margot Berwin is the author of the best-selling novel "Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire." Her work has been translated into nineteen languages. She earned her MFA from the New School in 2005 and lives in New York City.
Praise for "Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire" "The great escapist novel . . . [A] shameless guilty pleasure of a romp that involves black panthers, poisonous snakes, scorpions, and the Adonis-like son of a Huichol Indian shaman . . . [A] sultry, psychedelic summer souffle of a read."--"Elle" "Sensual, voluptuous . . . Berwin vividly evokes the mosquito-loud, velvety blackness of a rain forest night." --"National Geographic Traveler " "Berwin makes a clever imaginative leap in her first novel, creating her own horticultural myth and then fashioning a lively novel around it." --"The Boston Globe" "Take two parts Carlos Castaneda, one part Sunset garden book, and top with a splash of "Indiana Jones" . . . Shameless, sweet, and deceptively potent." --"Santa Fe New Mexican " "Seductive interludes and exotic adventures define "Hothouse Flower and the Nine Plants of Desire" . . . A guide on plant mythology, spirit animals, "curanderos "(healers) and the mystery that can guide us to spiritual discovery, if only we open up to it." --Austin" American-Statesman" "A psychedelic adventure." --"The Wall Street Journal" "[A] grown-up fairy tale full of mysticism, shamans, and animal spirits. Light and breezy, it's also full of romance." --Fort Worth "Star-Telegram"