Set in 1940s Appalachia, The Secret Sense of Wildflower tells the story of Louisa May "Wildflower" McAllister whose life has been shaped around the recent death of her beloved father in a sawmill accident.
While her mother hardens in her grief, Wildflower and her three sisters must cope with their loss themselves, as well as with the demands of daily survival. Despite these hardships, Wildflower has a resilience that is forged with humor, a love of the land, and an endless supply of questions to God.
When Johnny Monroe, the town's teenage ne'er-do-well, sets his sights on Wildflower, she must draw on the strength of her relations, both living and dead, to deal with his threat.
With prose as lush and colorful as the American South, The Secret Sense of Wildflower is powerful and poignant, brimming with energy and angst, humor and hope.
In its ability to create a truly original Southern voice, The Secret Sense of Wildflower establishes Gabriel as a thoughtful and powerful Southern writer.
Here's what readers are saying about this mesmerizing southern historical novel:
"The story is powerful, very powerful. Excellent visuals, good drama. I raced to get to the conclusion...but didn't really want to read the last few pages because then it would be over!" - Nancy Purcell
"In this the story about a young girl who must grow up faster than her time and make peace with several factors there is also mystery and drama along with the palpable female protagonist and soulful narrative to keep the reader emotionally charged and invested. The Secret Sense of Wildflower is eloquent and moving tale chock-filled with themes of inner strength, family and love." - Maya Fleischmann, indiereader.com
"This is a lovely story about the simple and sometimes very difficult life of mountain folk. Being born and raised in Appalachia, I can appreciate the authenticity of so much contained in these pages." - Penny M. Wolfe
Susan Gabriel is an acclaimed writer who lives in the mountains of North Carolina. Her novel, The Secret Sense of Wildflower, earned a starred review ("for books of remarkable merit") from Kirkus Reviews and was selected as one of their Best Books of 2012.
She is also the author of Temple Secrets, Grace, Grits and Ghosts: Southern Short Stories and other novels. Discover more about Susan at SusanGabriel.com.