The Peculiar Miracles of Antoinette Martin : A Novel
LJ Reviews 2016 May #2
Growing up on a commercial flower farm in Redbud, KY, Rose and Lucy Martin were more like best friends than sisters. Lucy's compulsive need to count and her fascination with the language of flowers made her stand out in their small town; Seth, the proverbial boy next door, made everything okay. Then Seth left for the seminary, Rose gave birth to Antoinette, and the sisters stopped speaking after Lucy drew attention to Antoinette's differences from other children. Now Rose's heart is failing and she needs Lucy to take guardianship of her daughter. Will Lucy come home? What if she knew Seth was there, too? Knipper skillfully shows the sisters' relationship with complex layers of support and understanding alongside the conflict that drove them apart. Rose's increasingly fragile health is an authentic reason for reconnecting and creates a dramatic twist at the end. Antoinette's abilities remain somewhat mysterious but consistent, allowing readers to accept them without needing them to be defined. Lucy's quirks and romantic dilemmas are nice extras. VERDICT This charming debut will appeal to those seeking elements of magic realism, family relationships, and personal growth, as well as Sarah Addison Allen fans.—Stacey Hayman, Rocky River P.L., OH[Page 67]. (c) Copyright 2016 Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
PW Reviews 2016 June #4
Knipper's first novel chronicles how two sisters, Rose and Lily Martin, attempt to mend their longtime rift once Rose realizes that she's dying and that she wants Lily to come home to care for Rose's 10-year-old daughter, Antoinette. Antoinette has never spoken and exhibits other autistic-like behaviors as well as supernatural abilities, including the ability to heal things with her touch. She's currently cared for on a flower farm in Redbud, Ky., by her mom and Rose's childhood friend Seth Hastings, who lives next door. Seth still carries a torch for Lily, despite having left her years ago to go to seminary school. Lily has similar feelings for Seth, though she hides behind her friendship with dashingly handsome Will Grayson, who's also in love with her. Lily, meanwhile, has OCD, which manifests in her need to count things; she's stayed away all these years for fear that exposure to her niece will worsen her tics. But luckily for everyone, Lily and Antoinette warm to each other, though Lily is spooked that Antoinette has the ability to restore the dead and wounded. Though some of the pieces don't quite fit together, the originality of the plot in Knipper's debut will keep readers turning the pages. (Aug.)[Page ]. Copyright 2016 PWxyz LLC