June 8, 2024


curled up on the sofa

All Marnie wants is somewhere to call home. Mourning lost years spent in a marriage that has finally come to an end, she needs a fresh start and time to heal. Things she hopes to find in the rural west Lancashire village her mother always told her about. The Garden of Forgotten Wishes: The heartwarming and uplifting new rom-com from the Sunday Times bestseller.

About the Author of The Garden of Forgotten Wishes

Trisha Ashley is now a full-time novelist, but she has been known to work for stained glass makers and/or plumbers. She likes to paint, eat, drink, and read literary biographies.

Praises and impassion

After a somewhat rocky start, Marnie and Ned find common ground in their interest in the plants and the secrets that the overgrown garden gives up as they work. There are other surprises in store for Marnie as she settles into the job and life in the village, not all of them pleasant.

However, the pace of the story quickened towards the end, when there was a great deal of drama all within a few pages. I liked Marnie as a character and enjoyed her ability to stand up to the somewhat moody Ned.

I found him a bit annoying to start with, but he grew on me as the story progressed. I was intrigued by the cat in the story; his color and great size were unusual.

He was quite a formidable character with definite ideas of his place in the world. As well as the drama, romance, and hint of magic, the book has quite a bit of humor in its pages, with the old ladies living in the cottage providing a large proportion.

They enjoy experimenting with new ice cream flavors, and there is an interesting selection of recipes at the end of the book for those readers possessing an ice cream maker

The Plot

This is a deeply satisfying book, with a garden to cut back and transform, a secret or two, and some threats to contend with.

The Garden of Forgotten Wishes: The heartwarming and uplifting new rom-com from the Sunday Times bestseller.

With nothing but her two green thumbs, Marnie takes a job as a gardener, which comes with a little cottage to make her own.

Marnie has returned to England to work restoring a garden in a lovely little village in Lancashire. She’s been hiding in France because of her stalker/possessive ex-husband who seems to have finally moved on.

Turns out the garden belongs to Ned Mars, an old college friend who has heard some of the rumors her ex spread about her.

Gardening in The Garden of Forgotten Wishes

It is lively and funny and anyone with the slightest interest in gardening – even as an observer- will find much to enjoy in this story of Marnie getting to grips with an overgrown rose garden.

The element of romance is well introduced by the character of Ned, an old friend who has also endured a damaging relationship and is wary of any involvement with someone whose exit from gardening in the UK was much discussed.

Setting in the book

It is typically charming, with a large garden attached to a country house, and a bonus in terms of a waterfall considered to be a tourist attraction. The setting in this tranquil village with the river running through and the picturesque falls with the promise of fairies and angels left me feeling peaceful each time I read.

At the beginning of the novel, Marnie loses her mother who has dominated her life to this point, having been rejected by her own family. The main novel is about the adult Marnie, who has spent the previous few years in France working on refurbishing chateaux gardens.

Marnie’s husband

She had once had a promising career in British heritage gardens. But that was ruined by her controlling ex-husband Mike. He had sent an inflammatory resignation email to her employers. During their brief time together he had systematically controlled her life. And as her adoptive family was in France, nearly succeeded in cutting her off from all support.

Having escaped to France, Marnie has returned to Britain having found a strange live-in gardener job near her adopted sister Treena.

Marnie’s mother’s history

She has heard of Jericho’s End from her mother. But she is not prepared for the discoveries. Marnie makes when she arrives, including a family-run ice cream cafe. A memorable site on which to work, and the well-known gardener Ned.

Not that everything is straightforward, as she discovers that the people she works for are friendly and welcoming, including a rescue cat, Casper, who moves into her small flat. She soon learns something about the history of the village and realizes that a warning from her mother may finally make sense.

The brooding figure of Ned also worries her, as he is wary of anyone who may cause him problems as he battles to rescue his garden as a tourist attraction.

Ned Mars and Marnie in The Garden of Forgotten Wishes

The love story is just the tip of iceberg. Trisha Ashley’s covers every nook and corner of Jericho’s End. Also, its companiable community which has a healing effect on both Marnie and Ned. The book doesn’t give much of a story but we will be transported to the life of Marnie living and breathing the country air.

Review of the book

The Garden of Forgotten Wishes

It’s a wonderful read. Both Marnie and Ned are great characters, perfect for each other. The secondary characters have just the right amount of kindness, eccentricity, and fun to add a lot to the story.

Lancashire is gorgeous anyway, and the setting exemplifies those characteristics. I enjoyed all the bits about gardening as they enhance the setting and book.

The perfect read for a quiet Sunday, the conversations with Casper made me smile. This is a book that includes some of the challenges of life, both contemporary and in the past, and is a deeply satisfying read.

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Black Swan (13 May 2021)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Best Sellers Rank: #1,412,653 in Books

Author’s some of the books

1. Sweet Nothings (2006) aka The Magic of Christmas

2. A Winter’s Tale (2008)

3. Wedding Tiers (2009)

4. Chocolate Wishes (2010)

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