The Unfinished Garden by Barbara Claypole White

Tilly Silverberg loves her garden.

After her husband had passed away, her garden and her thriving plant business is her sanctuary.  Between that and her son Isaac, Tilly finds enough to keep her mind busy and to avoid sticking a toe out beyond her own little world.  Its safe in Tilly’s world and it is enough.

James Nealy has money to spare and when he wants something… it is just a matter of tossing money at it to make it so.  As an in demand software developer he has trouble quieting the activity in his mind, but he has a plan to do just that… by creating a garden.  He has seen Tilly’s work and wants her to be the designer even as she doesn’t think she is the right person for the job – after all, she sells plants, she does not design gardens.

And so the story goes, a family emergency creates a new way to escape for Tilly and as she retreats with Isaac to where she grew up she finds that while on the outside things look wonderfully the same – they clearly are not.  Her best friend has a secret, her mother is plotting, and an old boyfriend is available and that is a temptation Tilly does not want… but does. 

And then suddenly there is the compulsive and attractive James knocking on her door, asking again about an idea he has for a garden…..


As featured in Book Page magazine

Why did I want to read this book?  Well… cover love for one!  This was offered to me through a TLC book tour and I thought the synopsis sounded fun.

AND The Unfinished Garden was fun… an adventure really.  Barbara Claypole White’s characters jump off the page.  I was reading this book this past week and while at first it seemed a bit jumbled (those first pages…) do not be discouraged!  Suddenly the book was flowing nicely along and I really found myself enjoying Tilly and her strength.  While James is not normally the type of character I would find myself drawn to (the impulsiveness, the guilt he carries) I dd find myself waver a bit… it was not a love, but I was able to like him. 

The book provided a nice story line that kept me engaged and interested.  I am not a fan of romance reads, but this one never felt heavy in that department and I am thankful for that.  This book to me was a story about second chances and finding the strength to let go… and in ways that are both sweet and surprising, I think you will find that both Tilly and James are characters with flaws that are endearing because they reflect some of the same flaws we can find in ourselves. 


Amazon Rating

Goodreads Review

Thank you to TLC book tours for allowing me to spend some time in the garden.

27 thoughts on “The Unfinished Garden by Barbara Claypole White

  1. The Unfinished Garden seems like a metaphor for my own life 🙂 No, when it has “garden” in the title, I’m always attracted to the book. It sounds like a good one!

  2. The title grabbed me since I’ve just read The Unfinished Journals of Elizabeth D – however this looks to be a interesting read too – must look it up, thanks!

  3. I think if an author is able to make you like a character you wouldn’t normally be drawn to, that says a lot about the book! I’m glad you enjoyed reading it. Thanks for being on the tour!

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