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Publisher's Summary

A magical Pendleford prequel novella from the best-selling author of The Language of Spells, that introduces the world to Iris Harper - the original Harper witch.

Iris Harper has lived in Pendleford for decades. The local witch is mistrusted by the townsfolk, but that doesn't stop some coming to her begging for potions, spells and quick-fixes.

As time has marched on suddenly Iris is aware that her days are beginning to fade. Her sumptuous garden is turning against her, the sweet scent of rot potent and now a young girl has come begging for a solution at her door.

Yet, the problem she brings causes Iris to remember a man from long ago - the man she loved, the man she could never trust...

©2015 Sarah Painter (P)2017 Sarah Painter

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Prequel Novella from Language of Spells

I have not read the Language of Spells but I'm looking forward to reading it soon. This was a short audiobook Novella that was light and easy to follow. The story kept me interested until the conclusion.

The narrator did a good job bringing the story to life.

If you like supernatural stories with a touch of magic you should give this book a try. It was laid back and a good introduction to this author's writing style. She doesn't spend a lot of time with descriptions of places and people. This book was straight forward and I found it engaging. If you have read her Language of Spells, you will probably enjoy learning about Iris.

"I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review."

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

A clean story tells life as is, but with humor

its a very nice and clean story, starting out a bit slowly with all the necessary descriptions, but soon enough you can see and hear the underlying humor of everyday life. This is a very realistic portrayal of a slice of village life, telling of all the bumps, aches, and pains in daily life as one grows older. But, along with the realism comes delightfully sly humor in the telling. The matter of fact portrayal of the reader with the characterizations given each person allow the humor in daily life to sneak up on you. After all, it's better to laugh than to curse or cry when life isn't cooperating with expectations or plans. SPOILER ALERT: I really liked the sly old girl of a witch getting the truth out of the dirty not so old goat, but I think my favorite bit is how Bex has an inspiration which finally helps little Carly relax and give in to the expected on the potty.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Short and Sweet

This was a short and sweet story. A little magic but a lot of funny moments and truth bearing. The witch was really a herbalist but also was a member of a family with different talents. Her's was to discern the right thing to give or do for people. The narrator was good and made the story come alive. The story plot was interesting and I am glad that the HEA was included. Becca needed a break. John hung in there until she realized that she could tell him how she felt. I got this ARC via audiobook boom.

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A WONDERFUL SHORT STORY OF WITCHES AND LOVE

What made the experience of listening to The Garden of Magic the most enjoyable?

The trials and tribulations of being this particular kind of witch.

Who was your favorite character and why?

Iris because she had managed to deal with her life and all her memories and help others at the same time

Which scene was your favorite?

drinking the spiked wine

Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?

The ending

Any additional comments?

I received this audio book freely from the author, narrator or publisher and am freely offering my unbiased review.

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Fantastic story


I was gifted this audio ARC for a honest and unbiased review from the author/narrator.
Sarah Painter has painted a fabulous story of witches. The Garden of Magic is the prequel novella to The Language of Spells. The story was very entertaining and I really enjoyed it.
Tracey Norman has the loveliest voice and was such a pleasure to listen to. She was able to take me into they story well into the night.
I would highly recommend The Garden of Magic.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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Entertaining Magical Story

Any additional comments?

Iris is a witch in the town of Pendleford. The witches in her family all have special talents or "afflictions", as they are regarded. Iris's affliction is an overwhelming compulsion for giving. More importantly, she is compelled to give others what they need, even if it makes no sense to her at the time. Now an elderly woman in her 80's, Iris is beginning to feel the effects of her age.

A young woman named Rebecca (Becs) comes to her for help with her employer. After resisting his advances, she is accused of stealing as retribution. The employer turns out to be none other than the son of the man that Iris was once engaged to. This knowledge conjures up old, painful memories for Iris. But will she help?

The Garden of Magic is the prequel novella to The Language of Spells. The story was very entertaining and I really enjoyed it. The narration was wonderfully done. Tracey Norman has the loveliest voice and was such a pleasure to listen to. I would recommend The Garden of Magic.

I was voluntarily provided this review copy audiobook at no charge by the author, publisher and/or narrator. This review is my honest opinion.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

The Truth Serum

Would you listen to The Garden of Magic again? Why?

yes, because you always miss things the first time around.

Which scene was your favorite?

The confrontation in the Farrier living room.

Was this a book you wanted to listen to all in one sitting?

yes, short but complete.

Any additional comments?

I was voluntarily provided this free review copy audiobook by the author, narrator, or publisher

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Good audiobook

What made the experience of listening to The Garden of Magic the most enjoyable?

Nice story, read in an magical ,colorful way.

Who was your favorite character and why?

I liked all the characters. The reading matched their feelings and the story .

If you were to make a film of this book, what would the tag line be?

I wouldn't choose the tag line of the audiobook.

Any additional comments?

"This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review."

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars

Love the narrator

The story is short but done so well. The narrator is awesome! Gave the story a richness and depth. I received this book at no charge in exchange for an honest review.

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    5 out of 5 stars
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The Garden of Magic Was a Great Listen

I listened to The Garden of Magic written by Sarah Painter and absolutely loved it. From the start it was easy to fall into interest of the story. I liked the character of Becs who at first with her love interest John reminded me a tiny bit of Bridget Jones. Just a little bit. But my favorite character was Iris. She reminded me of a gifted elder crabby grandmother who knows how to fix everything. Loved her.

So I think this is a prequel to another story by the same author titled The Language of Spells which I haven't listened to. That said, perhaps it's better to listen to this one first as this story mentions Gwen who is the great niece of Iris. The other, longer audiobook is where she (Gwen) comes home to Pendleford after 13 years and learns about her great aunt Iris from journals she inherits along with her estate.

Tracey Normans' performance was brilliant. She had a lovely voice with perfect inflections. She's a super good voice actor and I'll listen to her again. Both author and narrator were excellent.

"This book was given to me for free at my request and I provided this voluntary review."

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    3 out of 5 stars
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  • Jo
  • 06-03-18

a bit disappointing

I enjoyed the book overall, the characters were well rounded and believable, the pace was good and I liked Iris a lot - I felt that the ending was a bit of a let down though. I'd love to read more about these characters and see the relationship between iris and Bec develop more. I didn't think there was enough about the garden and iris either. however, I guess that's part of it being a short story - not enough space to explore everything.

I enjoyed the writer's style though and will look out for books by her in the future. the narrator was also good and I would listen to other audiobooks read by her.

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    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Emily
  • 10-22-17

Entertaining

I was given this free review copy audiobook at my request and have voluntarily left this review.

This follows two storylines, one concerning a town witch called Iris Harper, who is struggling with loneliness and age, and a young woman called Bex who is fired from her position as a nanny after she is accused of stealing. I much preferred Iris’s storyline and plot even though both felt rather light. It was entertaining but I felt like it ended abruptly.

  • Overall
    3 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars
  • DubaiReader
  • 05-30-17

Novella.

I'd never read a book by Sarah Painter, but it's hard to resist her beautiful covers, so I offered to review this audiobook for Audiobook Boom. I don't know the author or the narrator, so this is an impartial review.

Iris Harper is a herbalist, but she is getting on in years and I felt for her struggle to get downstairs and answer the doorbell when it rang. She has quite a reputation, but I couldn't quite see how she was going to help when a young girl is wrongly accused of theft.
In fact, I thought she was unacceptably rude to Bex when she came asking for help, and Bex was surprisingly long suffering. In the end, the resolution revolved around a considerable coincidence, which always makes me cringe.

It was an enjoyable listen, if a bit twee; well narrated by Tracey Norman. But it was only a novella, so it was hard to get into the story or the characters, before it drew to its conclusion. For this reason I'd feel this book was better suited to those who had already read some of Sarah Painter's novels, as it would elaborate on some of the folk they had already met. For a first time reader it was too short and didn't make me feel I needed to read more.