MEET ME AT TWO LITERARY FESTIVALS IN ELORA AND QUEBEC
I’m reading from my award-winning book, The Untamed Garden, A Revealing Look At Our Love Affair With Plants, at two writers’ festivals this summer.
The first is in the pretty Ontario town of Elora, a short drive northwest of Toronto. Other writers in the line-up include Terry Fallis, author of the smash hit, Best Laid Plans, and Robert Rotenberg, whose crime novels have also become best-sellers.
Come and chat with us at The Elora Centre of the Arts on Sunday, May 26, between 1 and 4 pm. You’ll get a thought-provoking afternoon of readings –and I may even bring along a few of the sexy plants featured in The Untamed Garden.
Tickets cost only $20 and include a reception with wine and appetizers. We’ll also be autographing our books. They’re being sold at the festival by Roxanne’s Reflections, a stalwart independent bookseller in Fergus, and a big supporter of the festival. My beautifully illustrated little book costs $27 and makes a great gift.
Then on the weekend of July 20 and 21, I’ll be heading to Quebec’s beautiful Eastern Townships, to appear in an event called Wordfest. Meet me in a marquee set up on Sunday at the Joie de Lavande (Joy of Lavender) garden on Echo Rd. in Knowlton. I’ll reveal saucy facts about plants and flowers that you probably grow yourself. My books will be for sale afterwards.
Prior to my talk, there’s a picnic in this beautiful garden (overflowing with lavender) while poet Steve Luxton reads from his latest book. Shelagh Rogers of CBC fame is expected to be on hand too, as Master of Ceremonies.
Details are still being finalized, but it’s bound to be a fun weekend in a glorious setting. There some great B & Bs and restaurants close by! For more info, email: firstname.lastname@example.org
You can also catch me at the Tuesday April 16 meeting of the Beach Garden Society (details: email@example.com) and Whitby In Bloom on Wednesday evening, April 24. (details: firstname.lastname@example.org) At both events, the topic is once again, The Untamed Garden.
SHERIDAN NURSERIES TO SELL MY BOOKS
You can soon buy my two latest books at one of Ontario’s top venues for gardeners. Look for The Untamed Garden and also Incredible Edibles, 43 Fun Things To Grow In The City at Sheridan garden centres throughout the province in the spring. And if you don’t see them, ask.
I GOT THE GOLD
Whoopee! My latest book, The Untamed Garden, A Revealing Look At Our Love Affair With Plants, is, literally, tops. At the U.S. based Garden Writers’ Association annual convention in Tucson, Arizona, it won the Gold Award — beating out all the other books, magazines, newspaper sections and electronic media in the awards program.
As most of the 215 entries were American, it’s quite a coup, folks, for a “mere” Canadian to achieve this. My book had already won Silver for Best Book, but we had to wait until Oct. 16 to hear which “Best Overall Product” had nabbed the Gold. I felt immensely proud (and a bit surprised) as I heard my name called out at the awards banquet.
Three other people should share in the glory too. They are my editor at McClelland and Stewart, Anita Chong, who came up with the format for the book; Terry Nimmo who did such a beautiful job with the design; and my agent, Carolyn Forde, who had the original idea for a book about sexy plants. I call us The Gang of Four — and we’re all thrilled by this accolade.
Read more about our win in two news stories that appeared in the Star:
WATCH ME reading some sexy stuff beside the tallest, most suggestive flower in the world. This flower, called the Amorphophallus Titanum, bloomed for the first time in Canada during May 2012 at Niagara Parks Floral Showhouse. And it caused a huge sensation. The botanical biggie also plays a starring role in my sexy new book, The Untamed Garden, A Revealing Look At Our Love Affair With Plants. So videographer Mark Disero and I hopped down to Niagara to witness its performance.
Sonia’s story about the Titan Arum appeared Friday April 27 in the Star. Here’s the link: http://www.thestar.com/living/article/1168772–world-s-tallest-plant-ready-to-bloom-in-niagara-the-real-dirt
Mark Cullen thinks The Untamed Garden is one sexy read. Read more…
Incredible Edibles wins Silver at the Canadian Cookbook Awards. More below.
DISCOVER SOME SPICY STUFF ABOUT PLANTS
My seventh book, The Untamed Garden – A Revealing Look At Our Love Affair With Plants is now on sale. Published by McClelland & Stewart, it contains delicious tales and tidbits that may surprise you. Why? The plant world is a far sexier place than most people think — and I reveal some of its lusty secrets in this gorgeously illustrated little volume.
I’m also immensely proud to report that the folks at Indigo are thrilled with this book. Indeed, it makes a perfect gift for anyone–male or female–who loves plants. And it doesn’t cost an arm and a leg. (The price is $26.99 in Canada, $24.95 in the U.S. )
Rave reviews are also starting to appear on both sides of the border.
Why do people like it? Well — whoo hoo — you can read about:
- A luscious-looking rose whose name scandalized the Victorians.
- A suggestive plant that caused a Spanish queen to faint at court.
- The real forbidden fruit which caused the downfall of Adam and Eve.
- The amazing Coco De Mer, which resembles the pelvis of a naked woman.
- The reason why men fall in love with orchids.
- The night-blooming flower with a scent that turns men on.
- Love potions and lots more.
WHY I WROTE THIS BOOK
A remarkably sexy butternut squash (shown here) provided the inspiration. The “buttocks” of this squash had somehow managed to insinuate themselves into the backyard fence of a garden in downtown Toronto. After I wrote about her curves in my Toronto Star gardening column — and they ran the photo — it got me thinking: Why not a book about plants and sex? Could be fun. Thus The Untamed Garden was born.
What the book is — and where to buy it:
- Hard-cover, in full-colour, with easy-to-read. entertaining chapters that follow the “arc” of a love affair.
- Packed with remarkable illustrations and photographs. Some are contemporary, others are classic paintings by famous artists of bygone days, like Leonardo da Vinci.
- Buy (or order it ) at any bookstore. Or get it online from Indigo or Amazon. Click on Appearances for a list of where I’ll be autographing copies.
- Also published as an E-book. Go to Amazon or Indigo for instructions on how to download it.
INCREDIBLE EDIBLES GOES OVERSEAS
My colourful little book on growing food in the city (which won Silver at the Canadian Cookbook Awards in late 2011) is being translated into Turkish. The largest and oldest publisher in Turkey, called Inkilap, has bought rights to the book and will bring out a local edition in 2013. There are apparently legions of rooftop gardeners in Istanbul, the capital city, so here’s hoping for big sales!