Roz is a woman of independent means who thinks love is all in the past-but she's about to be taken by surprise. Number-one bestselling author Nora Roberts presents the second novel of her In the Garden trilogy, as three women discover the secrets from the past contained within their historic home.
Showing 1-2 of the 2 most recent reviews
1 . Very Enjoyable
Posted December 31, 2010 by Jessie L. , Drexel Hill, PAI think Nora Roberts' series are more enjoyable than the single novels. I enjoyed all three in this series and I liked that each one gave you a deeper understanding of a different character, even if some of the events were obvious.
2 . Great reading.
Posted March 21, 2009 by Dorothy Lathrop , CollinsvilleI loved the whole series
May 19, 2005
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Excerpt from Black Rose by Nora Roberts
Dawn, the awakening promise of it, was her favorite time to run. The running itself was just something that had to be done, three days a week, like any other chore or responsibility. Rosalind Harper did what had to be done.
She ran for her health. A woman who ' d just had ' she could hardly say ' celebrated ' at this stage of her life ' her forty-seventh birthday had to mind her health. She ran to keep strong, as she desired and needed strength. And she ran for vanity. Her body would never again be what it had been at twenty, or even thirty, but, by God, it would be the best body she could manage at forty-seven.
She had no husband, no lover, but she did have an image to uphold. She was a Harper, and Harpers had their pride.
But, Jesus, maintenance was a bitch.
Wearing sweats against the dawn chill, she slipped out of her bedroom by the terrace door. The house was sleeping still. Her house that had been too empty was now occupied again, and rarely completely quiet any longer.
There was David, her surrogate son, who kept her house in order, kept her entertained when she needed entertaining, and stayed out of her way when she needed solitude. No one knew her moods quite like David.
And there was Stella, and her two precious boys. It had been a good day, Roz thought as she limbered up on the terrace, when she ' d hired Stella Rothchild to manage her nursery. Of course, Stella would be moving before much longer and taking those sweet boys with her. Still, once she was married to Logan ' and wasn ' t that a fine match ' they ' d only be a few miles away.
Hayley would still be here, infusing the house with all that youth and energy. It had been another stroke of luck, and a vague and distant family connection, that had Hayley, then six-months pregnant, landing on her doorstep. In Hayley she had the daughter she ' d secretly longed for, and the bonus of an honorary grandchild with the darling little Lily. She hadn ' t realized how lonely she ' d been, Roz thought, until those girls had come along to fill the void. With two of her own three sons moved away, the house had become too big, too quiet. And a part of her dreaded the day when Harper, her firstborn, her rock, would leave the guesthouse a stone ' s throw from the main.
But that was life. No one knew better than a gardener that life never stayed static. Cycles were necessary, for without them there was no bloom.
She took the stairs down at an easy jog, enjoying the way the early mists shrouded her winter gardens. Look how pretty her lambs ear was with its soft silvery foliage covered in dew. And the birds had yet to bother the bright fruit on her red chokeberry.
Walking to give her muscles time to warm, and to give herself the pleasure of the gardens, she skirted around the side of the house to the front.
She increased to a jog on the way down the drive, a tall, willowy woman with a short, careless cap of black hair. Her eyes, a honeyed whiskey brown, scanned the grounds ' the towering magnolias, the delicate dogwoods, the placement of ornamental shrubs, the flood of pansies she ' d planted only weeks before, and the beds that would wait a bit longer to break into bloom.
To her mind, there were no grounds in western Tennessee that could compete with Harper House. Just as there was no house that could compare with its dignified elegance. Out of habit, she turned at the end of the drive, jogged in place to study it in the pearly mists.
It stood grandly, she thought, with its melding of Greek Revival and Gothic styles, the warm yellow stone mellow against the clean white trim. Its double staircase rose up to the balcony wrapping the second level, and served as a crown for the covered entryway on the ground level.