If you're a botanist or a scientist, or interested in those subjects or historical flower language, definitely give A Botanist's Gude to Flowers and Fatality a try.
Unfortunately I could tell this book just wasn't for me. I DNFd at 15% when I could tell it wasn't going to improve for me. I was hoping for a slightly whimsical mystery from a different perspective. Sadly I didn't really connect to Saffron and the flower/poison premise that drew me in ended up feeling too technical for my taste as I'm not a scientist or a naturalist. If you're into those fields, I think this one will be fun and intriguing for you.
Thanks to Dreamscape Media and Netgalley for an audioARC in exchange for an honest opinion.
I thoroughly enjoyed this return to our intrepid Saffron Everleigh's world. It was again so refreshing to revisit a mystery/historical fiction that takes place in 1920s London, a time period not as often featured. Saffron is brillant, kind, and healthily independent. In some ways I enjoyed this outing more than the first. Dr. Lee was a terrific character addition and Saffron's roommate Elizabeth was again a delight. I loved that the mystery involved the Victorian language of flowers, a topic I've always found fascinating. The medical-botany cases were scientifically sound and even helped me diagnose a mysterious injury I had a few years ago! I was not a huge fan of the introduction of a 'love triangle'... but was actually quite pleased with the decision Saffron made, as it seemed quite right for her character. The ending certainly left the door open for a third installment, which I will eagerly pick up too!
Thanks to Netgalley and the publisher for an audio ARC in return for a fair and honest review.
I was already into this before I realized it was technically a book 2, but this was not a problem at all. While there may be some character backstory I missed out on, enough information was provided for me to keep up with not only the case, but the characters story as well.
I really enjoy stories like this. It’s a female “investigator” in a time when that was definitely man’s work. Plus the case itself?? Killing with flowers?? I’m here for it. That was such an interesting storyline!
I received the audiobook from NetGalley and the narration was spot on for this book. It made it an immersive experience and I love that.
Saffron Everleigh is at it again!
Tasked by Department Head Dr. Aster she must work on a project with an irresistibly charming Dr. Michael Lee.
Soon Inspector Green shows up asking for Saffron (and Michael’s) help when bouquets of poisonous flowers are left at two crime scenes.
Tossed into another murder mystery, Saffron must figure out who is killed these women using her expert knowledge in botany.
The pacing was consistent and contains some spoilers from the first book.
So excited to be back in the world of Saffron! Our mystery this go around revolves around drugs rather than plants which I didn't love - I love seeing Saffron dazzle with her brilliance (there was some flower symbolism but she had to look that up, so it wasn't her strength). The drama was high, the romance was tense, and Saffron continues to develop as a person in her own right. However, this story fell a little flat for me as, again, it centered on a mystery that wasn't related to botany. I was thrilled when we started with a medical mystery that required fast action to find a poisonous plant, but then we dove into a high society drug scandal? I would have loved a book of Saffron working to solve poisoning mysteries around the UK! Desperation and scandal is all well and good, but it wasn't nearly as interesting as it tried to be. I still adore Khavari's writing and finished this in one sitting, so I can't rate it lower than a 3, but it doesn't hold a candle to the first book in the series.
**Thank you NetGalley and Dreamscape Media for the Audio ARC**
An enjoyable romp thru the early 20th century thru the eyes of a forensic botanist.
I know... odd, right? Actually, Khavari does a great job of coupling historical fiction with salient forensic details as a poisoner is discovered. Add to the mix a blooming love triangle and a female protagonist, and you have the recipe for a good story!
But, sadly, only a decent mystery. I feel like there was perhaps so much content and one or two great ideas, but the actual mystery felt telegraphed and a bit obvious. However, this borderline cozy mystery kept me turning pages, and Saffron's character is full of pluck!
My thanks to NetGalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review!
It’s the 1920s and Saffron Everleigh, is a woman in a man’s world. She is a botanist and a research assistant at the University College of London. She just started her own research alongside Dr Lee. She embarks on an adventure with him trying to solve the cases of women that have been killed by bouquets of flowers. Saffron is recruted by DI Green who needs her help and knowledge to interpret the bouquets and find the killer.
Check the review for book one here!
After book one, the connection she had with Ashton has decreased, we barely see him for he is in the Amazons in an expedition and comes back around half of the book. So that said, meet Dr Lee, her new pair in arms! He is a tease and there’s a connection between the two! There’s kind of a love triangle and I was totally in for it.
I really enjoy Everleigh, she is a strong character and she defies the odds. She also changed from book one, she is now more capable alone, she doesn’t require all the male help she did before, which I loved. She is one of a kind, battling for a place in a man’s world. She is intelligent and has a knack for poisonous plants, which makes it interesting. She is an also an amateur detective and as soon as DI Green talked to her, she is all over it, ready to help and conduct her own investigation!
I love all the plant talk, especially about poisonous plants, it’s just exciting even though I know nothing about it. I have in my opinion learned quite a lot from this and the previous book.
Lee is super cute, he loves to tease Everleigh and get reactions for her, there’s sparks between them but I’m a Ashton all the way. Although I must say I did like Lee’s character. He is funny and endearing and I couldn’t but like him…
There are lots of murders in this book and the appeal from being from flowers kept me hooked. They were all poisoned and there was even a bit of gore at one time, very little, but there.
To solve the bouquets murderer, anyone could be dangerous. In social circles she is not used to anymore, she and Dr Lee do the best to get acquainted in a wild environment and get swept away into out-of-hand parties, jazz clubs and users of cocaine.
This is definitely not over and I think there’s definitely potential for more books in the series, and I can’t wait to see what Saffron does next!
A Botanist's Guide to Flowers and Fatality is the second book in Kate Khavari's Saffron Everleigh Mystery series. Saffron is moving forward with her career at the University College of London studying botany. After her work with the police in the first book of the series Inspector Green comes to her with a new case involving deadly flowers.
I really love the Victorian setting of this book. Saffron is such a great heroine. She is smart and tenacious. Her knowledge of flowers is used so well paired with the mystery. I think this book was even better than the first. I can't wait to see what adventures Saffron gets up to next.
I received a copy of this title from the publisher; all thoughts and opinions expressed are my own. A Botanist's Guide to Flowers and Fatality is the second title set in the post-WWI era featuring Saffron Everleigh. The story picks up several months after the events of the first book. Saffron is working with Dr. Lee on a project to research potential sources of poison when they get reports of an interesting study. Saffron and Lee are dispatched to the scene as soon as possible. Dr. Lee enjoys teasing Saffron who is focused on trying to prove herself to the university faculty in a male dominated field. Saffron soon finds herself drawn into a new investigation when several women are murder after receiving a bouquet prior to their deaths. Using the language of flowers, she convinces the police that the deaths maybe the work of one killer. She ends up going undercover to attempt to infiltrate the social circle of several of the victims and Dr. Lee reluctantly comes along with her.
I did enjoy the mystery in this one although I was able to solve it prior to the big reveal - the author did a good job laying out the clues in a way that the culprit makes complete sense. The ending is unexpected and sets up future titles in the series very nicely. I like Saffron and find her to be very likable with a fun cast of supporting characters. The narration was very well done and definitely added to my enjoyment of the story. I'm looking forward to future titles featuring Saffron.
When the police come to Saffron Everleigh to ask for her botany expertise and consult on a case, she gets sucked into yet another tangle of murder. With this case, though, comes night life, a new partner both at and outside of work, and the gnawing absence of Alexander Ashton. As Saff runs full tilt into the case, things progress and she becomes central to it all...perhaps to her detriment.
This was a fun and engrossing next book in the series. Khavari writes with whit and vulnerability, taking us with Saffron as she navigates an enthralling mystery all while trying to navigate personal feelings. I did miss Alexander in this book and wasn't a huge fan of the love triangle aspect of it, but that's just not a trope I enjoy in general. I will be looking forward to more in this series!
A Botanist’s Guide to Flowers and Fatality is the second book in the Saffron Everleigh Mystery series by American author, Kate Khavari. The audio version is narrated by Jodie Harris. Late summer 1923, and just a few months after dramatic events that see botanist Saffron Everleigh unpopular with her colleagues at University College London, she has been promoted to researcher in the Botany Department.
Her notoriously taciturn Department Head, Dr Aster has her conducting a phytotoxicology study with a noisy, messy, infuriatingly smug but attractive medical doctor, Michael Lee. Saffron and her study partner attend plant poisoning victims to interrogate, observe, take samples, and try to determine the botanical culprit.
But then Inspector Green turns up wanting what he surprisingly, given their previous interactions, terms Saffron’s “unique insight that could prove to be helpful” into two baffling murders. In each case, the dead woman has received a very unusual bouquet. And while the bouquets contain a number of poisonous plants, they are not the cause of death.
Saffron’s research leads her into the field of floriography, the Victorian tradition of secret messages via bouquets, which only provides vague clues, and what else might link these wealthy women is a mystery.
With the upper crust closing ranks against the police, Saffron sees that her own background as the granddaughter of a viscount might give her an entry with the friends of the younger victim, to gain important information. This entails several visits to a jazz club, being at the exclusive party of Lord Vale, a theatre attendance, a trawl through newspaper archives, and a visit to an upmarket fashion house, occasionally under the alias of Sally Eversby.
As the nephew of Lord Chamberlain, and with a fascination for the cases, Michael Lee is the perfect partner for some of these outings, and takes it upon himself to illegally enter and search the flat of one of the suspects.
The series needs to be read in order as there are massive spoilers for book one within. This instalment features a love triangle, some grisly murders, discrimination based on gender, race and wealth, shell shock, quite a lot of drug use and, of course, many, many flowers. There are several red herrings and distractions before the dramatic climax and reveal.
Khavari captures the era well, and her characters are mostly appealing, except when they’re villains. Saffron is a very principled young woman who sticks to her values despite pressure from the men around her. Some parts feel a bit like melodrama on steroids, but this is, mostly, a fairly enjoyable cosy mystery.
This unbiased review is from an uncorrected proof copy provided by NetGalley and Dreamscape Media.
A BOTANIST'S GUIDE TO FLOWERS AND FATALITY is the second book in the Saffron Everleigh Mystery series, and I enjoyed it just as much as the first book.
1920s London setting with mystery and poison, featuring a woman in a male dominant world. I thought the audiobook narration was entertaining, and I loved being transported to that timeline.
*many thanks to the publisher and netgalley for the gifted copy for review.
I went back to read my review of book 1 and I guess I had a lot of questions after reading it. I'm not sure that those questions were answered, but onwards and upwards!
I was lucky to receive the audio version and that made it so much easier to fly through this book as I traveled this week. The narrator was engaging and her tone felt right for the characters. I was totally invested!
I finished this book about an hour ago and all I can think is that I'm proud of Saffron and also devastated for her! So much bittersweet emotion and I admire her for sticking to her morals. There is so much that goes on in this story with murders and mayhem! Some of it was a bit cliche, but it led us where we need to go. Dr. Lee is a welcome partner and fun to work with. He brought a bit of light to Saffron's personality. He was a true partner without gender affecting his belief in her abilities. Without the set up for the next book, I like the way the book ended. I hope Saffron sticks to her beliefs and it appears we're finally getting a bit of background!
Setting the Scene: Set in post-WWI London, Saffron Everleigh has attained the position of researcher in the botany department at University College of London. With the handsome Mr. Ashton on an expedition in the Amazon, Saffron is teamed with Dr. Michael Lee, a medical doctor, for her first research study tracking episodes of reported poisonings around London. When Detective inspector Green asks Saffron's assistance with an unusual case. Each of the victims, all women, received bouquets of poisonous flowers, and there may be a clue in them. The case takes Saffron and Dr. Lee into the disreputable playgrounds of London's aristocracy.
What I Thought: The characters are charming, with relatable flaws, and the mystery well plotted. This book lends a unique perspective on academics, science, and recreational drug use in the infamous Roaring 20s, as well as interesting insight to post-WWI PTSD and coping mechanisms. I do hope the love triangle that makes a brief appearance in this book is over and done, but only time will tell. Saffron may find it challenging to find a man who respects her intellect, as well as her desire to become entangled in police matters, in the hallowed halls of academia.
I enjoyed this book so much, I had to go back and buy the first one in the series to read too. This particularly story has a perfect ending to set up Book 1 in the series.
It has a great cast of characters, a strong female lead, and an intriguing mystery.
A serial murderer is on the loose, and the only thing that points to it being the same murderer is that each victim received a bouquet of flowers tied with a black ribbon just before being killed. However, the manner of death for each victim is different, and as the meaning of the flowers is translated, the reason for their death is explained.
Now, Saffron must determine who the killer is before they strike again or silence her forever.
While I don't often reach for a historical mystery, I truly enjoyed this one! And it's left me wanting more from this author. Can't wait to go read Book 1 and eagerly await Book 3.
Thank you to Kate Khavari, Dreamscape Media, and NetGalley for an advance review copy.
Truly enjoyed this book. It was very entertaining. I love how the book was written and how the mystery was done. The epilog has me wanting to read the next book. Characters were great and I love the strong female lead.
This was a great follow up to book one.
While it can be read as a standalone, you’ll get more out of it if you also read the book before this one.
I really enjoyed this book and found that the pacing was pretty good.
The audio for this audiobook was fantastic and well voiced.
This book is an awesome mix of mystery, botany/herbalist vibes and strong female lead.
This book would make a great mystery beach read.
This second book in the Saffron Everleigh Mystery series is even better than the first. It will appeal to fans who enjoy a historical setting, a strong heroine, and a bit of gentle romance. Once again, Jodie Harris does a wonderful job narrating the story, creating a unique voice for each character.
Set in 1923 London, Saffron Everleigh is a research assistant at the University College of London. Saffron is currently working with Dr. Lee, responding to reports of poisonings and traveling the countryside. Saffron recently discovered who poisoned one of the professor’s wives, which is why Detective Inspector Green asks for her help in a murder case. Saffron is intrigued by the circumstances - the female victims are given bouquets that include uncommon and poisonous flowers. Saffron and Dr. Lee must uncover the murderer before Saffron becomes his next victim.
I gave A Botanist's Guide to Flowers and Fatality 4 stars
1920s London isn’t the ideal place for a brilliant woman with lofty ambitions. But research assistant Saffron Everleigh is determined to beat the odds in a male-dominated field at the University College of London. Saffron embarks on her first research study alongside the insufferably charming Dr. Michael Lee, traveling the countryside with him in response to reports of poisonings. But when Detective Inspector Green is given a case with a set of unusual clues, he asks for Saffron’s assistance.
The victims, all women, received bouquets filled with poisonous flowers. Digging deeper, Saffron discovers that the bouquets may be more than just unpleasant flowers— there may be a hidden message within them, revealed through the use of the old Victorian practice of floriography. A dire message, indeed, as each woman who received the flowers has turned up dead.
Alongside Dr. Lee and her best friend, Elizabeth, Saffron trails a group of suspects through a dark jazz club, a lavish country estate, and a glittering theatre, delving deeper into a part of society she thought she’d left behind forever.
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The second book in the Saffron Everleigh Mystery series. I read the first book last year and liked it, but this book was actually better. It was more focused on the mystery and the flowers played a big part in this book, something I liked.
I like Saffron a lot. She is smart and stand up for herself, something that can be hard for a woman at that time. I also liked Alexander in the first book, but he was away for the most part in this book, so Saffron work together with another man, Dr Michael Lee instead. I don't like a love triangle, so this was not fun to read about. Hopefully the author decides not to continue in that way in the future.
I listened to this book and I really recommend this medium since the narrator did a great job.
This book comes out June 6.
Thank you, Net Galley and Dreamscape Media for the ARC in exchange for my honest review.
I love this series
Little lame with the stupid love triangle, but the story is still good in spite of it