Renegade Muse

books

All books
Flowers From the Storm

Avon Books, 1992; 2003
ISBN-10: 0-380-76132-7
ISBN-13: 978-0380761326

buy now

Flowers From the Storm

He’s the Duke of Jervaulx…powerful, rich, intelligent and locked in a lunatic asylum.

Discuss this book

Setting:

England, early 19th century

Mascot Animal:

Cass and Devil, a pair of setters, and a ghostly wolfhound

Laura's Comment:

Hmmm, what to say about Flowers From the Storm? Sometimes the muse rocks. The odd tidbit of original inspiration for Flowers came from a great-aunt of mine. When I was fairly young—7 or 8?—she suffered a stroke and lost the ability to speak. My grandmother, her sister, brought her to live at home for the next ten years. She would come up behind us kids and grab our hair or our arm, pinch so hard that it hurt, and say “No, no, no, no!” I thought she was nuts. Forgive me, I was young and afraid of her. My grandmother always insisted that she could understand what was said to her, and stood by her to the end.

Many years later, many—out of nowhere, the thought came to me that my grandmother had been right. That my great-aunt had been trapped behind a wall. It was a stunning realization.

I spent a fascinating period researching brain damage while writing Flowers from the Storm. Yes, for all those who’ve guessed or wondered, Christian suffered a cerebral hemorrhage. A one-time bleeding in the brain caused by a malformed blood vessel. He never had another one, I promise. I deliberately made him left-handed because left-handers have an atypical layout of speech centers in the brain, and often recover better from aphasic injuries.

One of the many strange and wonderful facts I stumbled across in my research on the brain: Did you know that sailors who spend long periods at sea, away from their wives, have a higher-than-normal percentage of left-handed children? Explain that one.

Recognition:

Romance Writers of America Golden Choice Award— Finalist, Best Romance Novel of 1992

Laura's Fave Review:

“If you want to read a book that comes as close to perfection as any historical romance, then pick up Flowers from the Storm. The story, the language, the emotional intensity: this book has everything. It’s Laura Kinsale at the top of her game - or anybody else’s, for that matter.” All About Romance

(I often wonder if I actually wrote that book or if it wrote itself while I was reading all those medical texts! LK)

Old Covers:

C’mon.  I dare you to resist that eloquent beckoning hand and grocery store bouquet.

Discuss this book

[1] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.07.2010

Please feel welcome to discuss this book.  All opinions are welcome, positive or negative, but civility and polite language are required for comments to remain.  Political or religious references are not allowed, unless directly related to the book under discussion. I do answer questions but I seldom give interpretations about my books or characters, because I enjoy hearing what readers see in them.  These comments and discussions replace my old forum at The Terrace. (Note that the spam captcha is an english word interspersed with a number—this may help you tell a letter from a number.  If it’s still too hard to see, reload the page for another one.)  WARNING: Book discussions may contain spoilers. 

[2] Posted by Erin Thompson on 01.07.2010

I am a bookseller at Borders.  I just wanted you to know that I just did a staff pick display and I whenever I do those, Flowers From the Storm is my first choice.  This book is one of my all time favorites.  I don’t know how to describe how much I love this book.  It showed me that Romance can be so much more.
Thank you, Laura, you rocked my cerebral world.

[3] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.08.2010

Erin, thanks so much.  It means so much to me that this book has been ‘loved’ by readers over the years.  It doesn’t really feel as if it belongs to me, but to all the people who have enjoyed it and remembered it.

[4] Posted by Patricia Whitaker on 01.10.2010

I am an avid reader. I read a book daily. I read Flowers From the Storm 4 times and each time was as heart wrenching as the first. I am reading it again and I can’t put it down. I seem to feel what they feel and cry when they cry. What a story.  Thank you for writing it. I know I will read it again and again. I have told all my friends about you and they are now tuned in to your books.
Always a fan.

[5] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.10.2010

Wow, Patricia, a book a day! That is the best compliment for a writer, when a reader feels what the characters feel.  Thank you for telling your friends, too.

[6] Posted by hilly on 01.15.2010

This is not an easy read - it’s difficult to understand Christian’s POV, because his muddled language skills baffle our brains as much as his!  We need to be patient, as only in the smallest increments does his comprehension improve.  It’s so worth the effort!  We, like Maddy, are impressed with his determination as he regains the ability to communicate.  This is one book that gets better every time you re-read it!

My favorite quote is actually with Wellington, when Christian retorts “Wrong fire”.  I want to cheer!

[7] Posted by Susan on 01.16.2010

By this time I was a total fan, reading every word I could find anywhere about upcoming books to get a clue for your next book.  When I read somewhere, in Laura Kinsale’s new book Flowers from the Storm the hero has a stroke; I was stunned for a minute.  Really, I just paused for a minute thinking, and then I thought, it’s going to be great!  As has been said before by many, it is one of the all time best books ever.

More left handed children is an interesting factoid.

[8] Posted by Kathy on 01.18.2010

After the fun of reading French Lessons, I went back and re-read Flowers from the Storm, my original copy with its fabulous Fabio-chested cover (requiring discreet book-folding in public). I had forgotten the heroine soft but direct voice, the real tension and suspense around the hero’s recovery, and the great cast of secondary characters, who put the hero and heroine in sharp relief.  I’m glad the new novels helps re-issue all our previous fave’s.  And new reads can get the discreet pretty lilac covers—but I’ll keep Fabio, just to prove I was one of your early adopters!

[9] Posted by Fao on 01.19.2010

Of course, this book is my all-time favourite. So much so that I repeatedly said it to my family and friends and now, I find myself translating it bit by bit into French so my sister and best friend can “read” it, too. But I’m not sure I’ll be able to express Laura’s genious with words (sigh!)

[10] Posted by Joey on 01.21.2010

The first time I read Flowers From the Storm (in ‘98), our son was in a coma.  Each day when I sat by his bedside at the hospital we watched for signs that he ‘was in there’. On the weekends, when time was not as limited, I sat with him - reading a book while he ‘listened’ to books on tape or music through headphones. Researching brain injury, I discovered many of the things you touched on in Christian’s story - such as not recognizing the side of the body affected by the injury - dressing only one side of the body (they really don’t ‘recognize’ the opposite side).  At the time, it was profound and comforting as well to read a story (albeit fiction) of how it might be for our boy should he recover - to get an idea of how things would seem through his eyes/reasoning should he ‘wake up’. I was learning more about trauma to the brain and at the same time, enjoying a beautiful love story. Of course, that was the first time I read the book - I’ve read it twice since and each time it carries a personal message.  Thank you, Laura Kinsale.

[11] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.21.2010

Joey, thank you.  Your post means a great deal to me.  Thank you for writing it.

[12] Posted by Beatriz Williams on 01.22.2010

“C’mon.  I dare you to resist that eloquent beckoning hand and grocery store bouquet.”

LOL!! Seriously, though, this is about the only “reformed rake” story out there that rings true. In the real world, a philanderer doesn’t reform just because he’s met the so-called right woman (paging Mrs. Tiger Woods); it would take something as world-shattering as a stroke to re-orient his mental and emotional compass to genuine fidelity. Christian’s journey to redemption is nuanced and believable, and Maddy’s moral agony achieves the near-impossible in romance: making a pious heroine sympathetic.

Also, Christian is way hot. More geniuses, please.

[13] Posted by Ash H. on 01.22.2010

I picked this book up few years ago randomly at B&N. Even more random was the occurrence since I donot usualy read romance novels. And what a delightful surprise. For a classic reader like me, it was sort of a jolt. I thought, guess what, I would need to start looking at other ‘so called’ romance writers, one never knows what a jem might be hiding there. Since then I have read all of LK’s book, atleast the published ones. But, this one will forever remain my favourite of hers.

[14] Posted by CM on 01.24.2010

Flowers in the Storm was the first book by you that I read.  As Patricia stated on 1/10/10, I was able to feel what Christian felt.  This made rading the book difficult because it was emotionally exhausting.  However, it is one of my very all time favorite books.  I always look forward to finding one I do not have, and am looking forward to French Lessons. 

Thank you for writing books that are unique and wonderful.
CM

[15] Posted by Caitlyn on 01.27.2010

I gave this book to my mother for Christmas. She is wary, but starting it today, and I’m certain she will love it. I think any reader who is expecting a formulaic or cheesy, historically inaccurate, typical romance, is in for a huge surprise the minute they pick this one up. It truly transcends the genre and takes romantic storytelling to a whole new level.

I am so thrilled you are writing again! I’ve been desperately seeking out all your oldies, with some difficulty I might add, and was saddened by the idea of getting to the end of the pile… I can’t wait to pick up Lessons in French!

:)

[16] Posted by Dishonor on 01.27.2010

Flowers has long been my very favorite romance novel. Christian and Maddy, perhaps not the best of people on their own, are perfect as a pair; they fit together like puzzle pieces whose ragged edges fill each other out. There is the sense always of the eloquence of their story, which melds beautifully with the lean, elegant prose. Watching Maddy and Christian learn and grow while remaining true to themselves is simply…incredible.

I’m so glad you’re writing again. We’ve missed you!

By the way, is Christian influenced in any way by Evariste Galois, the 20 year old mathematical genius who was killed in a duel the day after he crafted his famous proof (which indicated that there are no general equations for polynomials above degree 4)?

[17] Posted by Dawn on 01.29.2010

I read this book after reading a recommendation by Diana Gabaldon, one of my favorite authors.  I was in no way disappointed.  Christian was my first experience with a disabled hero.  He was truely flawed and his recovery and personal growth were wonderful.  Maddy was conflicted, innocent and intelligent.  I loved her moral compass which helped Christian find his.  I’m going out to buy the rest of your books (as soon as it stops snowing!).

[18] Posted by Vikki Johnson on 02.05.2010

All of Laura Kinsale’s books are my favorites, her heroes usually tormented by inner and outer demons, but this hero was tormented by the physiological episode that left him “buffle-headed”. I felt that I could not breathe when he could not. I felt like screaming in frustration when no one could understand him. I wanted to beat the “ape” bloody senseless when he smashed him with a rod to get him into the tub of freezing water. But more—oh, far more—I felt like rejoicing when he got Churchill in his pocket. When he wept over his daughter. When he saw the legendary hound… and many other times too numerous to put here.
I loved this so much that when my husband—who reads even more than I do—asked me to suggest a good fictional novel to break the monotony of his college cirriculum, I reccommended this one. Since he is a pyschology major, I figured it would appeal to him. And it did. He carried it with him whenever he left the house until he was finished, unmindful of bare-chested Fabio on the cover. Afterward, he told me that he understood why Laura Kinsale is my all-time favorite author. She is a master storyteller.
If a historical romance can win over a man… wow. That’s great writing!

[19] Posted by Meanne on 02.08.2010

I had always been an avid romance reader in my early teens, twenties and thirties but for one reason or the other ( which escapes me at this point ), I went on a 10 year hiatus of not reading these kind of books. One serendipitous day, I found myself in the romance section of a bookstore. I think nostalgia brought me there. And this book beckoned to me ( No, it was not the Fabio cover, but the new one that spoke to me…). Hmmm, I wonder what romance novels are like these days, I thought to myself. After buying this book, I went home to read it. Little did I know that this book would open the door once again to my romance reading addiction. I felt quite stunned while reading this book and felt that the quality and poignancy of romance novels have improved by leaps and bounds. Since then I tried my best to make up for lost time by devouring Laura Kinsale’s backlist and discovering other new to me fabulous authors like Connie Brockway, Mary Balogh, Mary Jo Putney, Julia Quinn, Eloisa James, Loretta Chase, Georgette Heyer etc…Thank you Laura Kinsale for your wonderful talent and for being instrumental in bringing me back to the fold…No matter how many other fantastic books I have read in the past, and will read in the future, FLowers From The Storm will always have a special, indelible place in my heart..

[20] Posted by Sonia Lima on 02.13.2010

Hello Laura, I’m your fan from Lisbon, Portugal.
I’m reading “Flowers from the storm” for the 4th time and I felt I had to congratulate the talented writer of my all time favourite book…a book that truly takes me away to a whole different world and it seems each time I read it, it has whole new details and new outlines I didn’t know about.
I absolutely love it.
“Flowers from the storm” was my premiere in romance reading and since then I’ve been addicted to your books.
Thank you for the wonderful book and thank you for the marvelous love story, so perfect and beautiful…in summary, thank you for your enormous talent.

[21] Posted by Hannah on 02.17.2010

I have been reading romance novels since I was a teenager. Over the years I have gathered favorite authors and will often pick up their books based on name alone, without reading an excerpt. Laura Kinsale has been added to this list. This book had me caught from the first page, I could not put this book down, it drove my husband crazy. I read the book in 3 days. I had to catch up on laundry, mail and make nice with my family for disappearing for those 3 days. If you havent read this book, GO GET IT! Be forewarned, this novel will captivate you.

[22] Posted by laura kinsale on 02.18.2010

I’ve been traveling and mostly offline, so I haven’t been able to respond individually, but thank you all for your very kind words.  I love it when readers can’t put a book down.  That makes it all worthwhile. 

Welcome from Lisbon, Sonia.  Portugal is a country I’d like to visit someday!

[23] Posted by Judy Martinez on 02.23.2010

Hello Laura!

I’ve been meaning to read your books for a couple of years now, and just never had the chance to get to it for one reason or another. I found out about “Flowers From the Storm” from other authors and have seen that its always on the 100 list for best romance novel of all time. I finally decided to get to your books and read “Lessons in French” first (which I just adored, by the way!) and I finally got FFTS from the library. It was UH-MAZING! I loved the unconventionality of the characters and situations. Thought it was very fascinating the dynamics between hero and heroine, also the journey of co-dependency to love on both sides. Very realistic and heart-wrenching. And I personally felt the frustration that Christian went through every time he realized that what had come easy to him, won’t be easy ever again. It’s very difficult to live with a disability in a world that isn’t adaptable for people outside of the norm and needing the patience and understanding from the people who might not have those to give.

Thank you so much for the wonderful read and sharing the journey of true love.

[24] Posted by Heather on 03.03.2010

I saw on the news not long ago that there have been studies showing that women who are under stress during their pregnancy tend to have a higher chance of having a left-handed child. I would imagine women whose husbands are away at sea are more likely to be stressed out. Interesting.

I have read a few of your books in the last month and have loved them. I just finished “Flowers from the Storm” and didn’t want it to be over. I really enjoy how you expose the darkness in all of your leading men. A bad boy is more interesting, as long as he is good to his woman. :-)

[25] Posted by laura kinsale on 03.03.2010

Heather, that’s an interesting correlation and very likely right!  Thank you, I’m glad you enjoy my books.

[26] Posted by rubi on 03.12.2010

I’m on page 254, this is my first LK book..i gotta tell you its a hard read, not the subject matter so far, but the read. I want to put it down, but something compels me to continue, like a looking at a car crash but different. after reading all these comments, i can’t wait to finish..Maddy just received the letter from Gill telling her to stick with Shev…..can’t wait
Kathy 01.18.2010 I was a huge fan of Fabio, wish i saw that cover

[27] Posted by eKathy28 on 03.13.2010

I can only agree with the readers here who found this book gripping and ultimately exhilerating. There literally was a sense of tensing up all over my body as Christian tried to communicate, the exhaustion others have mentioned as his frustration mounts. But one of my favorite scenes is with his dragon relative who tells Maddy that if she goes back to her Quaker lifestyle she will continue to do only tiny little good things when as a Duchess she could really accomplish good for many. What a lesson from such an ornery character.  The Laura Kinsale marathon continues!

[28] Posted by rubi on 03.13.2010

im starting to like the dragon..she just arrived and wants a baby, i think he might be thinking to blot something with a ghost..maybe?? can’t wait to find out,on page 343 but can’t read today, have to clean for company…something always getting in the way of reading. man my life..lol

[29] Posted by Liz on 03.28.2010

FFTS is my favorite LK novel of all.  (And I love them all.)  I remember exactly where I was (in an airport) when I began the book and how stunned and compelled I was by the depth of the characters and the language.  And how I kept being annoyed by bells and admonitions to put on my seat belt and was entirely surprised to find myself back in ‘real life’ when I was forced to look up from a page.  This book taught me that emotional involvement with the characters was the hallmark of a LK novel.  This book not only made me love reading, but made me want to be a better writer.

[30] Posted by laura kinsale on 03.30.2010

Hope you enjoyed it, Rubi!

Liz, I really appreciate your story about remembering where you were when you began reading the book.  That’s quite a compliment!  Good luck with your own writing.

[31] Posted by ava on 04.06.2010

i love this book.

[32] Posted by amy on 04.06.2010

My first Laura Kinsale. I love to read, I love to read great writing best! This one is on my top to recommend.
I am in a season that I have the time and the excuse to read.
The better to book, the longer I can stay on the treadmill. On this one, I didn’t even feel the burn.
As some have posted, this book made me tense. I had to finish in a day. The story drew me in because the emotions were real, the responses human.
I appreciated Christian’s battle, his trial by fire; it was almost too painful to read.
I truly understood Maddy’s struggle, to follow the road less traveled. To be lead, and not deceived. ‘No rule but love.’
One of my favorite lines for Maddy at the end:
‘It had not seemed difficult, on a small income, to know what was right to do….Now, with so much, it was daily a decision: what was necessary, what was frivolous…It was so much gray—so little black and white; for a year she’d spent more of her time questioning herself and how she lived in Truth than she had done altogether in her life.’
Thanks for writing Laura. Please continue!
Your new fan,
Amy

[33] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.07.2010

Thank you, Ava and Amy!  If a book can make you not feel the burn on the treadmill, what more could I ask?

[34] Posted by meg on 04.20.2010

Dear Ms. Kinsale,

I’m a late bloomer in the world of romance novels. A major reason is that I was intensely disappointed with the first romance novel I read back in high school (90’s) - thought it was a bunch on porn without plot.

However, I stumbled upon “Flowers from the Storm” quite recently, mainly because of its intriguing premise. I read the book in one sitting for 12 hours straight. I was that hooked. The scenes were so incredibly powerful that I could completely sympathize with Christian and Maddy - feel their pain and dilemma in every written word. No other story has moved me so much.

I just want to say that you are a gem of writer. I consider “Flowers from the Storm” as one of the best books I’ve ever read right there with Tolkien’s and Gaiman’s works.

Looking forward to reading more romance from you!

Sincerely,
Meg

[35] Posted by Denise Herron on 04.20.2010

Dear Ms. Kinsale,
I just have to tell you how much I am loving “Flowers From the Storm”.  I first read about your book when I did an internet search for the “best historical romance novels” and this was one of the top 100 listed.  Out of pure curiosity, I ordered it from the local library when I found out that they did not have a copy in stock.  I am so happy that I did.  I am midway through the book and just can’t stop reading.  I feel every emotion that you write for your two main characters in the story…just love Christian and Maddy.  At first, I thought that Christian had been poisoned until I realized that he really did suffer a stroke, or cerebral hemorrhage.  I can’t wait to find out how the story ends, but at the same time, I don’t want it to end b/c I love this story.  Does that make sense?  This is the first one of your books that I’ve ever read.  Since I’m a huge historical romance fan, I am now looking forward to reading all your other books, especially “Lessons in French”. 

Keep up the great writing.  Your words are just masterpieces!  This book is bound to become a collectors’ item.  I would definitely recommend it to others and would re-read it in a heartbeat.

All the best…

Denise

[36] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.21.2010

Meg, thank you, that is quite a recommendation! 

And thank you Denise, I always love to hear that people can’t put a book down.

I’m very glad both of you are enjoying Flowers.

[37] Posted by Denise Herron on 04.23.2010

**WARNING: IF YOU HAVEN’T FINISHED THE BOOK, YOU MAY NOT WANT TO READ WHAT FOLLOWS**

Ms. Kinsale:
I finally finished reading “Flowers From the Storm”.  I just had to share the extent of my feelings towards the end of the book.  I truly did not think that Maddy would go back to Christian, and started crying like a baby around page 500.  I knew that I had to read the last 35 pages in one sitting, so I reserved a slot of time last night to read the conclusion, and I was so surprised about the ending.  The scene in the meeting house made me cry picturing Maddy standing there with tears running down her cheeks and Christian watching her read her letter and disputing the things he knew were untrue.  I still get chills whenever I think back on that scene. First of all, I didn’t think he’d wait more than 5 minutes for her to come to him, and secondly I didn’t think that she would go back to him.  I could feel Christian’s humbling emotions when he slowly realized that Maddy could only be with him and would indeed help him raise his daughter.  What a lovely ending to a beautiful and uplifting love story.  I really wanted to keep reading about their future together and wondered how it was that Christian’s mother and sisters came to finally reconcile with Christian and accept Maddy as the duchess. 

Could you please let me know whether it’s at all possible that you may continue writing their story or perhaps one day write about Diana?  I know that some authors don’t like to write sequels to their stories, but these two characters, in my opinion, were so compelling that I would love to see them raising Diana along with their own children.  I just picture Maddy as the perfect mother and Christian as the doting father.  [If I say pretty please, would you consider it? Pretty please?]  I re-read the last 3 chapters at least 4 times!  That’s how much I loved your ending to The Best Love Story Ever Written.

All the best…
Hope you respond!

Denise

[38] Posted by Denise Herron on 04.23.2010

Two More things:
1) I loved the development and growth of the two main characters throughout the book; and
2) I think that this book would make a great movie.  Has anyone ever approached you about purchasing the rights to the book to make a movie?  Just curious.
Thank you for writing these unforgettable characters and their amazing atypical love story.  All the best…always!

Denise

[39] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.27.2010

Denise, sorry to be a little slow to answer, I was called out of town unexpectedly.  I’m very glad you enjoyed Flowers so much.  There have been occasional vague inquiries about a movie, but it’s very unusual to have a historical romance make it to Hollywood, so that’s quite unlikely. 

I know it may be disappointing to hear, but I’m not very likely to write a sequel to Flowers.  For one thing, it’s been a very long time since I wrote it, and I’m interested in other characters now.  For another, I think sometimes with a book many readers love (which makes me very glad!) I could only upset as many as I could please with whatever I did with those particular characters.  I never count anything out, but a sequel for Flowers isn’t high on the list.  If I did anything, it would likely be a short story or novella.  But since I’ve never been able to write “short” that would be unusual too!

[40] Posted by Denise Herron on 04.27.2010

Ms. Kinsale,
Thanks so much for responding to my inquiries.  If anyone ever did decide to make another historical romance movie (think “Atonement”), I think that Flowers would be a great choice.  I’ll keep my fingers crossed that it might happen one day. 

Also, I totally understand why you may not want to write a sequel to FFTS since it may disappoint some readers.  So, I guess I’ll just have to look forward to reading all your other great romance novels.  Right now I’m deciding among “The Shadow and the Star”, “Lessons in French”, or “The Prince of Midnight” (tough choice!).  You may hear from me again in the future.  Ms. Kinsale, you are such an amazing writer, and I am so glad that I found your books. 

Best wishes for your continued success!

Denise

[41] Posted by Jessica on 05.07.2010

Just finished this book, and I LOVED it.  I’m a nurse, so the whole time I was diagnosing Christian!  Wonderful research, I loved your portrayal, and the fact that you made him left-handed was brilliant!
The scene at the end in the Meeting House definitely had me in tears.  The whole story was beautiful. 
Also, I laughed out loud at some of Christian’s references, especially “thee-thou sugar scoop,” referring to Maddy’s bonnet :)

[42] Posted by Patricia Whitaker on 05.07.2010

Well, I have fallen totally in love with the Duke. I have just finished my 8th reading of Flowers. No matter what other book I pick up, I just can’t seem to read it. I always go back to the Duke. At this point I can pick any page and know what happened before and I can continue on from there. The thing is, I still cry just as hard or harder, than I did the first time. I find myself holding my breath when the Duke tries to talk. It is really, by far, the most touching storwphave ever read.
  Patricia

[43] Posted by laura kinsale on 05.10.2010

That’s amazing, Patricia.  So glad you enjoy Flowers so much. 

Jessica, it makes me smile when “medical” readers wonder “what’s really wrong.”  I figure making him left-handed gave me some wriggle-room. ;)

[44] Posted by Cláudia Neves on 05.17.2010

” Flowers From The Storm ” is best romance in the word!!!
Tank you.
From Portugal.

[45] Posted by laura kinsale on 05.18.2010

Thank YOU, Claudia, that is a very sweet comment and I’m glad you enjoyed it.

[46] Posted by eKathy28 on 05.18.2010

I just finished “Flowers from the Storm” again for the second time this year—and the year is not even half over. Caught a lot of things I didn’t pay enough attention to when I re-read it earlier this year. The details leading up to his attack, for one. And I read the meeting house scene very, very slowly thanks to some of the comments here. “Truth!” Whew, can still feel that one. i was not surprised he was still waiting two hours later. These two are way beyond the games characters in other books play when they are trying to figure out how to reach their happy ending. I think if she did not come to him as she left the meeting house he would have chased her down and abducted her. “Duchess on the inside.” Amen. As I was reading it I was imagining Robert Downey Jr. playing the Duke. We can dream, right?

[47] Posted by Gabrielle on 06.13.2010

Words cannot describe the depth of my love for this book. I am addicted to romance novels and for years I thought I knew what my favourite has been. But recently, I’ve realised that no book has stayed with me like this one has. It is so beautifully written and so different from anything else that I’ve read or come across. I adore every word. Christian is my all-time favourite hero and his struggle is so real and heart-wrenching that whenever I recommend it to friends, all the words get choked up and I can barely even tell them how good it is!! Needless to say, I think they get the drift. Maddy is also amazing! I love how your characters are so far from perfect and they think so clearly and consistently that it’s hard to believe they’re fictional. It never disappoints no matter how many times I read it. Thank you thank you thank you!!

[48] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.15.2010

Gabrielle, thank you!  Maybe you are channeling Christian when you can’t find the words to tell them about him. ;)

[49] Posted by Deborah on 06.21.2010

I’ve read thousands of romances over the years. I bought Flowers brand new when it originally came out and I’ve re-read it many times.  It’s a masterpiece. Some of the finest work I’ve ever read.

[50] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.22.2010

Thank you Deborah, I’m glad you remember it out of so many you’ve read.  That’s a real compliment.

[51] Posted by Joan Chin-Gasee on 06.26.2010

Flowers from the Storm is my all time favourite Laura Kinsale book. I read it over 17 years ago when I was a university student in Barbados. It was unputdownable. I had the original Fabio cover too. When I left Jamaica (where I am originally from) in 2002 I had to leave my copy. I now live in Canada. Years later I found out that a reprint was out, I had to replace it. I’ve read this book more than 20 times. The best historical romance ever!!. My other fave is The Shadow and The Star.

[52] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.27.2010

Thank you Joan!

[53] Posted by Barb on 07.04.2010

This is the first book I’ve read by Laura Kinsale.  It certainly lived up to the hype of many blogs top booklists.  The story is compelling, touching and fulfilling (as only a good romance novel can be).  Who would imagine that a stroke victim would be one of the best alpha heroes out there?  Who would imagine that a Quaker spinster would make a proud romantic heroine?  Laura Kinsale, that’s who! Thanks to you and your muse for breaking my “reader’s block”.

[54] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.08.2010

Sorry, I was out of town for the holiday.  Thank you, Barb, very glad you enjoyed it!

[55] Posted by Michele Powers on 07.16.2010

Loved, loved this book!  I really enjoyed how you showed how he heard language, and how his language appeared to other people.  Then I liked how you showed the progression of his getting better.  I’m a teacher and I work with children with language impairments, and with speech therapists so maybe this was why I especially enjoyed how you got that so perfect.  I read the book a few months ago and I still remember how he called her “thee thou Maddy girl”.  I was also touched by the end where she was reading the letter aloud and called it fornication and he said no, it was love and then he waited two hours instead of 5 min. You did a great job of showing him becoming a better person, and a very romantic love story too. My grandmother had a stroke and lost her language and became a very angry person so I really enjoyed the emotional authenticity of his character.  How original that you had him have a stroke and she was a Quaker?  I have read lots, and lots, of historical romances and this is now one of my favorites.  So well written!  Great work!

[56] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.16.2010

Michele, it’s always a special treat to hear from readers who have personal experience with some of the aspects of FFTS.  Thank you!

[57] Posted by Angelique on 07.19.2010

Flowers from the Storm…

I think Im on my 5th read. I have the NON-FABIO cover. I have a book cover that I used all the time until I realized that people probably think Im still reading the same book everytime they see me and maybe I cant read that well! I dont care, I will take this book anywhere. It has stuck with me through other reads and now I find myself comparing. What a story. Sigh….
I can visualize so much of this story. I can feel the anger and frustration, the cold and smell of the seclusion room, I can feel the pain in Christian’s back, see him handing her the flowers. I love the old aunt, fiesty thing that she is. I love the father and his interaction with the duke. The scene when he meets him again in the hall just reaches me. And then theres Maddy, strong, independent, tough, never give up on him Maddy. She encourages me to stop, think, listen, and feel. I have a much better personal idea of Quaker life and Im grateful.
Ive read your other books and enjoyed them as well but nothing beats this book. I have every single book of Stephanie Laurens and thought I would never find another I liked so much. You’ve proven me wrong!

[58] Posted by Mary on 07.20.2010

WOW.  Always on the eternal hunt for a well-written great romance.  This one is a CLASSIC.  Thank you Mrs. Kinsale.  This story is beautiful.  Your style reminds me of Laura London’s (Tom and Sharon Curtis) Windflower, and their other books.  Very dark hero saved by extremely pure heroine.  Call me naive, but I LIKE my girls to be sweet and pure, and for everybody to love them. (LOVE the supporting casts, including dogs, and their love for hero and heroine.)(Also loved the sweet and knowledgeable glimpse of a quaker’s perspective. Have very conservative spiritual views myself, and LOVED Maddy’s conscientiousness.  GREAT STORY.)  Also love feisty dowagers!  One of the most precious attributes of this book has to be the research and desire to show how a stroke victim might feel.  I will never treat one the same again. Loved all of the things mentioned above.  This book is one of my all time favorites, and I have read a LOT of books.  Thank you so much.

[59] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.20.2010

Mary and Angelique, I’m glad you enjoyed some of the secondary characters too.  Thank you!

[60] Posted by Colleen on 07.27.2010

Several years ago, I stayed up all night to finish FFtS, unable to put it down until 5 am when I finally went to bed sad and happy and tired. It was the first of your books I ever read, and it made a devoted fan of me. Last night, I was inspired to reread it after having put it aside for a few years, and I again stayed up all night. These two characters are like no one and nothing else in this genre, and I love them so much. Thank you for writing this.

[61] Posted by Sandra Keller on 10.08.2010

I came across this book when I was just about to give romance novels for lack of depth. Kinsale you are an amazing writer! I wish you’d get a movie deal for this book though! Maybe we can start a facebook campaign for someone who offer you a movie deal! ;) If you had to pick actors to play the role of the Duke and Maddy who would you pick?
Thank you for all the amazing reads!

[62] Posted by laura kinsale on 10.10.2010

Thanks, Sandra!  Actually I can never remember actors or their names, so I don’t have any suggestions there.  Glad you didn’t give up on romances!

[63] Posted by Liz on 10.23.2010

I put off the reading of this one for a long time, because it is the final book and I’ve now read them all.  I kept it on my shelf for months just so I could continue looking forward to it and I was not disappointed.  Christian may have eclipsed ST Maitland as my favorite but I need to give it time before I make that kind of decision (though I’m sure Nemo will always remain my favorite mascot)!!

I have vague memories of a very taciturn, somewhat stern grandfather from when I was very little.  He was a strong, rugged farmer all his life.  When I was 7 he suffered the first of two massive strokes and lost movement on one side of his body as well as his speech as we knew it.  He truly was a changed man after that.  He became much more emotional and often frustrated/angry when he could not communicate with us.  I remember hearing a lot of “no no no” and the curse words were certainly always at the ready because that was the only way he could express himself.  My grandma was always telling us that he understood us and I grew to believe it eventually because he still managed to order us around with “You.. you! God d**n! No!”  Yea, we eventually got it.  ;-)  Now, most of my memories of him are of a sweet and (mostly) gentle man who always cried when it came time for us to leave.

I am in awe of how well you wrote and described Christian’s brain injuries. It made me so sad to imagine what it must be like for him being unable to effectively and clearly communicate, and even to understand the things that were once so basic and integral to daily life.  I read his dialogue very slowly, because I felt that those words just would not come quickly for him… just remembering how my grandfather struggled with his words.  I have to shut up now.  AWESOME BOOK.  Great love story, but far more than that.  I’m glad to have read it and depressed that it’s over.  Thanks, Laura.

[64] Posted by laura kinsale on 10.25.2010

Thank you Liz.  I think it just takes growing older to realize the meaning of many things about people we knew as childen.  And it can make you sad that you didn’t understand more at the time.

[65] Posted by Janina on 10.28.2010

This was the first book of yours that I read,Laura, and it was amazing. I pride myself on being the girl that doesn’t cry during sad movies and doesn’t cry during a sad book. This story brought tears to my eyes - I just wanted to hug Christian so many times during the course of the story. And even though Maddy drove me batty at times, I understood her and why she was so conflicted between what she wanted and how she was raised to look at certain things. This is a book I know I will revisit many times. Thank you. Since I am new to your books, I was wondering if any of Christian friends will be getting their own stories one day as well?

[66] Posted by Maria on 11.04.2010

Hello! I read this book for the first time one year ago. I could not resist to show it to all my friends. One year later it got back to me and read it again this last weekend and it was just like the first time. I really don’t know how can this be so inspiring, so full of love. This is what I feel when I read it: love! And I can’t let go this feeling, the story, the characters in the days and weeks after read it. Congratulations. This is the most amazing book I ever read.
Somebody should make a film out of this book!! I’m sure it will not be great, it never is, but during the reading I was always imaging Hugh Jackman as Christian…
Regards from Portugal!

[67] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.04.2010

Thanks, Janina!  We authors are cruel and love to make readers cry. ;)  And laugh too, I hope.  I’ve thought of doing something with the secondary characters but so far nothing has quite gelled.

Maria, thank you, I think Hugh Jackman would make a great Christian.  Lots of angst!

[68] Posted by eKathy on 11.04.2010

Personally, I have been picturing Robert Downey Jr. as Christian and maybe as Sheridan Drake. Hugh Jackman works, too.

[69] Posted by JB Rose on 11.06.2010

Fortunately, I bought a later printing of Flowers From The Storm. If I had bought the book with Fabio on the cover, I don’t think I could ever have convinced my husband to read it. He just returned from a business trip - read the entire book in airports - and wants to know if there’s a sequel! This is one of the best-written books I have had the pleasure to read - as others have commented, it reads very true-to-life. What a talent you have! (And to my mind, Christian looks nothing like Fabio.)

[70] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.06.2010

I love it when husbands/SO’s enjoy the books too!  Thanks for letting me know, JB.

[71] Posted by Renee on 12.01.2010

Thank you sooo much Laura Kinsale!

This is hands down my favorite book, ever!!  I am an avid reader, once I get into a book I am quite worthless otherwise.  This book brings so many emotions with it.  It is truly beautiful.  I love Christian! :)  I love it so much that I Would buy any movie made after the book regardless of the actor/acting. All of your books are good, but this one is divine!!

[72] Posted by Mary Guidry on 12.06.2010

OMG I love making finds like this book!  When you start with a genre, you find all sorts of wonderful books, then the the pickin’s get slim.  I can’t believe I’ve read romance books for all this time and never found this gem.

It’s all been said before here ... LOVE Maddy and Christian; going to my “to be read over and over again” list.  (Not too many on that one.)

Any chance of getting in onto an audiobook?  I frequently fork over the cash for audiobooks of ones I love.  Ooooh, please, please?

Thank you for the wonderful hours of reading!

[73] Posted by laura kinsale on 12.06.2010

Thank YOU, Renee and Mary!  I’m glad you enjoyed it.  There’s probably not much chance of a movie, but an audiobook would be great.  Maybe someday!

[74] Posted by Chris John on 01.13.2011

I have just finished ‘Flowers from the Storm’. What a beautiful, beautiful book. Thank you so much.

[75] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.13.2011

Thank you Chris *smile*

[76] Posted by Andrea on 01.20.2011

Hola Laura,quiero contarte que soy una gran admiradora tuya!!!!!! Flores en la tormenta es el mejor libro que he leido en mi vida.En Argentina es dificil conseguir algunos libros tuyos,pero los que he leido hasta ahora me encantaron!!!!!

[77] Posted by Shivani Ghaisas on 01.24.2011

Hi!
I read FFTS a year back….it was the 1st of your books that I read. My first thoughts after reading this book was WOW! OMG….....WOW! Since then I have read most of your books. I really like the way you have portrayed the hero- Christian…to me he was a true rake/womanizer turned loving husband! Most romance novels have the formulaic plots like- “handsome rake with a golden heart” and the “beautiful and intelligent but naive (I’d say- just plain stupid!)heroine”...............but FFTS and indeed Seize the Fire are those novels that truly have the tortured hero redeeming himself in some way (though not completely!) :)

Just one word…...AWESOME! :)

p.s.: While I really liked Lessons in French…......could you please write another intense book like FFTS or STF? Waiting for it!

Thanks!

[78] Posted by Melissa Winters on 02.04.2011

I started this book after reading The Shadow and the Star (like the same night, I finished it, and picked this one up). I started out the first chapter, settling in, thinking I was in familiar romance territory “he’s a jerk, she’s pious, hmmm Quaker is interesting”. And then he had his cerebral hemorrhage and ended up in an insane asylum. I must have gasped out loud, set the book down, turned to my husband and gave him a rundown of what had happened so far. Needless to say, it was another very late night staying up to see what on earth was going to happen next! This book rocked my world. And when I finished it, my husband asked, “So what happened in the rest of the book?” An amazing piece of work, an amazing gift. Thank you.

[79] Posted by claudia farina on 03.08.2011

Hello Laura! Im from Argentina, sory my english!!!My english is very bad….
I read twice a book. For me is beatufull!!!!
Congratulations!!
Best regards

Claudia

[80] Posted by davina on 03.16.2011

I LOVE this book! I make it a point not to hold on to romance novels because there is never enought shelf space but this one has been with me for decades. I have the Fabio-with-boquet copy too and have re read it often. Sometimes years go between readings but the sheer quality of the writing, historical research and utterly believable story never fail to impress me. I have yet to read another romance novel (and I must have read hundreds by now) that is as good.
I really think that it would make an absolutely marvellous movie!

[81] Posted by Sarah on 04.21.2011

This may seem a silly question, but how old was Diana when Jilly brought her to the house the night of the big party?

[82] Posted by laura kinsale on 05.18.2011

My apologies, I’ve just discovered that I haven’t been getting notice of comments posted on several of my book pages.

Muchas gracias, Andrea and Claudia—my Spanish is pretty rusty!  But thank you, I’m really glad you enjoyed FFTS.

Shivani, I wish I could “choose” what sort of book to write, or even whether I write one at all!  It seems to be rather like trying to teach a cat to bark. ;)  Trying really hard doesn’t work.

Melissa, I’m evil and love to hear that my books kept a reader up all night. ;)

[83] Posted by Lily on 06.19.2011

Laura
Thank you for a wonderful book, wonderful on so many levels.  My book club has chosen Flowers and is about to begin discussion; it would be wonderful (goodness that has become the word of the day, how about magnificent *G*) if you would honour us with a comment and/or a direction to question.
Thank you so much,
Lily

[84] Posted by Kathy on 07.25.2011

I have just “discovered” this book and feel like I have just found a buried treasure.  Not only in this book but also in the other stories yet to read.  Thank you!

[85] Posted by Di on 07.28.2011

This is one of my keepers. So much so that I have it on my Kindle as well as my original paperback which fell apart. I have recently ordered a used copy of a hardcover edition as I can’t risk one of my faves falling apart again.

“But thou art the duke, a bad wicked man, and I love thee too well to make thee something different.” ~Maddy.

Also, one of my all-time favorite historical romance quote is from The Prince of Midnight:

“Forbidden worlds, wild joy and romance. A midnight ride with an outlaw prince, and life, and life, and life. He burned with it.”

Now, is that a romance or what?! Loved The Prince of Midnight.

Your books are different Ms. Kinsale, and precious. :)

[86] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.29.2011

Lily, I’m so sorry I missed your comment and request, I have been traveling nearly every day since early June.  It’s probably too late but please tell them I’m honored to have my book chosen for your club to read.  If you still would like a discussion point, perhaps you might talk about whether the way I wrote Christian’s disordered language was effective, or just confusing.

Kathy, so glad you found my books and are enjoying them!

Di, I’m flattered that you remember lines from my books.  That’s a real compliment.  I have “keeper” lines too from books I love; I’ve put some of them in the animated quotes in the “Tea” section on my site, where I occasionally blog.  (Link at the top of this page.)

[87] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.08.2011

Making sure I get notified when there are comments in this thread.

[88] Posted by Natalie on 08.21.2011

This book is the most unique historical romance I’ve read: starts out typically (with a rake albeit one that is a genius) then introduces the most Atypical heroine I’ve ever met then shocks with the abrupt medical change in the hero. I could not put the book down through the rest of the wonderfully written, compelling, emotionally-charged story. Made me both squirm in frustration and cheer as the hero regained control of his faculties one bit at a time. I love the humor that comes through: “dour thee-thou”, “the ape”, “the mule” and “kill him when you want him” still cracks me up. An intelligent read without being overbearing or tedious. Can’t wait to read the other books from a great storyteller - thank you Laura!

[89] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.23.2011

Thank you Natalie.  I love to hear that a reader can’t put a book down!

[90] Posted by Anit on 08.31.2011

The most beautifull book i have ever readed in my life. The story, the way was written, the way it tell us the story… Congratulations, you are a great writter, really are.

[91] Posted by Anit on 08.31.2011

I readed it in 3 days, and started all over again after that.

Thank you so much for giving me all the words to imagine the hole story in my mind in Portugal.

[92] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.31.2011

Anit, I’m glad to welcome a reader from Portugal here.  Very happy that you enjoyed the book!

Laura

[93] Posted by Belen on 09.04.2011

Hi Laura!
I just finished reading Flowers from the storm….. I LOOOve it!!! I love it! I love it! I will have to re-read it as I missed some details( didn’t have much time to read so I finished the book in a month) A friend of mine recommended it and she was so right…is a masterwork piece!
I wish u the best :)
Your new fan from Paraguay

[94] Posted by Sylvie on 09.06.2011

Hello Laura,

Just finished “Flowers from the Storm”, my first book of yours and was deeply touched by these two very believable characters, Christian and Maddy.  The honesty and internal dialogue and struggle of these two characters was so moving.  Whatever the past, whatever the dogma, whatever the birth, one can transform and empower oneself in the face of truth and love and care.  I am rereading it and am enjoying the bits of humor here and there.  Well done Laura. I look forward to reading your other books.

Sylvie

[95] Posted by laura kinsale on 09.07.2011

Thank you, Belen!  Now we can add Paraguay to the list of countries to welcome here.  Very glad you enjoyed the book.

Many thanks to you, Sylvie.  I’m pleased that you are picking up the humor!  There are quite a few lighter moments in a fairly intense book.

[96] Posted by Aimee on 09.15.2011

I read this book in 3 days and then starting reading it again as soon as I finished.  I’ve never read a book back to back before, but I couldn’t stand being done with it.  I’ve recently started reading romance novels again after a long hiatus with all sorts of other genres.  It doesn’t take long to find in the romance genre that some are written extremely well and some are so bad I can’t even finish them.  The writing in this book is excellent and the emotions feel real.  I can’t stand novels where the characters are desperately in love the minute they meet.  The relationship took time to grow naturally and it gives the reader time to become invested in the outcome. 

I also really enjoyed and appreciated the way Maddy’s religious convictions were approached.  Her hesitations made her come across as someone spiritually conflicted, but not a ‘religious nut’.  As a Christian myself, it added another dimension to ponder as I read.

[97] Posted by sara on 09.16.2011

I just finished the book, and I am SOOOO TOUCHED. I had never heard about Laura Kinsale before, and I picked up this book in the book shop just because the cover “called me”. What a surprise when Maddy finds out that Christian is in the lunatic asylum, and I realized that “THIS IS GONNA BE A REALLY DIFERENT STORY”. It is incredible how you really feel what they are feeling in every moment. All the love and the sexual feelings between them are so good tell… Really MRS KINSALE, thank you for writing this beautiful story, with this beautiful end. These characters will be always in my heart.

[98] Posted by laura kinsale on 09.19.2011

Aimee, glad you appreciated Maddy’s character.  It’s one of the hardest things to do, make a love seem to grow in a believable way, and I’m glad you felt FFTS succeeded there.

Sara, thank YOU for posting, I’m so glad you had a memorable experience reading the book; there’s no more an author can ask for!

[99] Posted by Rory the Reader on 09.21.2011

This book gets better at every reading. And the scene with Jervaulx and Maddy in the library is absolutely amazing. I literally have to remind myself to breathe every few sentences.

But great as the book is, it leaves me with a few questions I hope get answered.

1. Do you, Madam Author, really have a very very soft spot for men with blue eyes and dark lashes?

2. Why do Christian’s brothers in law want him put away?! Don’t they depend on him for some extra money every quarter? If he’s declared incompetent, don’t they risk a possible scandal, losing a connection to an exalted title, and possibly the estate as well (it is entailed, we are told)???

[100] Posted by laura kinsale on 09.23.2011

Of course I have a soft spot for men with blue eyes and dark lashes.  Also men with blue eyes and long, blond lashes, like the one I married. ;)

Oh dear, I really don’t remember about the brothers-in-law.  I think if they had him declared incompetent, someone (them) would be appointed as a guardian or trustee who’d then control the estate.  The title would stay w/Christian as long as he was alive, incompetent or not.

[101] Posted by laura sanchez on 11.04.2011

Hi Laura! Mmm…, I really do not know what to say. I have found your web accidentally, and I did not want to spend the opportunity to write to you.
I do not use to read romance novels, but somehow your book finished in my hands when I went to Lanzarote of vacations years ago.
I must thank you. Thank you because your story touched my heart, not in a mushy way but in a very human one.
Thanks to tell us the story of Christian y Maddy, of their suffering and fstruggles, their self-sacrifices, so real than it could be mine.
Thanks to fill the book of those small things that provide smiles, some tears, or even annoyance, and it is what forms the day by day of our lives.
I belive that the fact that you gave the present to Maddy of being the protagonist of a fairy-tale (a very hard one but that continues being a fairy-tale) and in exchange you gave the company of human so exceptional as her to Chistian for her naturalness, generosty and courage, and that they were capable of joining their lives, it is what does that the book was so special
Still today there are times that I smile remembering the small and silly things that he told her in order that he should laugh.
It is what does a book be magic, that could not be forgotten, that lasts in the time.
For all this, I thank you again.

Best wishes, from Spain

P.D. And yes, I have read other of your books, but I will speak about them another day :)

[102] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.04.2011

I am very very happy that you found magic in the book, Laura.  Thank you.

[103] Posted by Catherine on 11.14.2011

this book is art, definetly my favorite book of all time

[104] Posted by P. Whitaker on 11.14.2011

I want to thank you Laura. You saved my husbands life.
After reading about the Duke’s symptoms at least 8 times,when my husband seemed disorieted, and answered every question with NO, NO, NO, I knew what was happening to him. I was able to get him to the Dr,and they helped him right away. He had a left side stroke. So you see Laura, without Flowers from the Storm, I would not have known how serious it was. Again a big Thank You
                Always a fan Pat Whitaker

[105] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.15.2011

Catherine, I’m honored that it’s your favorite.

Pat, thank you for telling me that.  Sometimes fiction can have a stronger impact on us than the health reminders that we all hear.  I am SO GLAD you got your husband quickly to a doctor—time is of the essence, especially since now there are better drugs to treat strokes immediately and stave off damage.  I hope he’s doing well.  He’s lucky to have you!

[106] Posted by Ashley on 12.13.2011

Laura, I absolutely loved this book. It was definitely the most challenging read I’ve indulged in so far, but by far the most rewarding! Seeing Jervaux struggle for words and interpretations… I felt a raw compassion from him from the start that was not expected. Initially I wondered how you could pull off such a vulnerable hero, but not only did you pull it off, you worked magic! I love your work, Laura. I’ve just finished the Shadow and the Star and I must say it didn’t disappoint!

[107] Posted by Ashley on 12.13.2011

I wanted to add that part of what was most appealing to me about this book was your ability to make Christian seem like a lost, vulnerable child one moment, then almost villanous in his baser intentions, or suddenly in control and amused by his beloved’s naivete: “Maddygirl,” he’d say, because all of a sudden they’ve switched roles…

There aren’t too many romance novels I read in which I find the hero in love almost immediately. I loved what you did here, however, wouldn’t change a single word! It has inspired me to do more research on the brain, as I am working on a novel and wanted to embrace my hero’s flaws.

PS Maddygirl seldom did what I expected and I deeply appreciated her air of mystery & unpredictability-it was refreshing… Same goes for Leda in Shadow and the Star. You were born to write, Laura.

[108] Posted by Kathleen Clark on 01.06.2012

I think that one of the best compliments a writer can receive is for a reader to say that I wish that your books would never end.  I simply love your books, love your sometimes wounded/flwed characters, would love to be able to meet them in person. Your talent is almost beyond description. The Shadow and the Star is my absolute favorite; I cry for the the child Samuel and the adult Samuel, who is so afraid to show his emotions. Please never stop writing.  I only wish that you could write more.

[109] Posted by Carla D. on 01.09.2012

Hi, Laura! I love “Flowers From the Storm”. I worked for some years with handicapped adults and I think you were very faithful to reality. Christian is one of my favorite heroes EVER. I spent the whole book with a stupid and silly smile on my face. He is so vulnerable that he almost seems like a young boy. I wanted to comfort him all the time. Thank you for this wonderful story.

Greeting from Portugal.

[110] Posted by Sharon Monk on 01.13.2012

After 34 years of dedicated, avid reading of romances, this is still the absolute best historical romance novel ever written. I know you have heard this alot, but this novel deserves a place beside some of the best fiction of our time regardless of genre.

[111] Posted by Ashley on 01.14.2012

i second that. remarkable.

[112] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.17.2012

I apologize for being quite late to reply to these comments.  It’s been a heck of a couple of months, I’ve been out of town for most of it, but all is settling down now.

Ashley, thanks!  And that’s interesting about them “switching roles”—they definitely did, part of the tension between them.  I found the research into the brain fascinating,and still do.  Amazing things we’re learning about it.  Good luck with your writing!

Kathleen, you are exactly right, that’s absolutely one of the best things for a writer to hear!  And also to hear that a reader would like to meet a character “in person.”  I wish I could write more too, but wherever it comes from, I can’t seem to push it too far.

Carla, it’s always great to hear from readers with personal experience that relates to the book.  I’d love to visit Portugal someday, I’m working on it!

Sharon, thank you.  What more can I say? *smile*

*waves to Ashley*

[113] Posted by Fiona on 01.17.2012

Hi, Kiwi romance reader here!

I started reading romance novels at age 12 when our public library ran out of kids’ novels for me to read and I got permission from the librarians to peruse the adults’ shelves.  Georgette Heyer and Victoria Holt soon became idols to me.

I have recently found that well-written stories such as yours allow me, as someone with Asperger’s, the chance to more easily understand particular feelings.  A friend once assured me that people really DO feel the emotions of which you write.  I have never, but it’s nice to think some people really can.

Several years later, while looking for new idols in the romance genre, I accidentally came across “The Shadow and the Star”. Highly recommended, so I read it.  By the end I decided I didn’t like it all that much, but then read the premise of “Flowers from the Storm”. Well!  Fan-flippin’-tactic! Read in two sittings (I’m a novel-a-day person) and I re-read it a month later when there were things I needed to clarify.

Going to try “Lessons in French” next.

Happy, happy reading times ahead, methinks! Thank you for FFTS, Ms Kinsale!

Fiona

[114] Posted by Carla Delgado on 01.17.2012

Hi, Laura. Then you must come. We´d love to have you here.

Kiss

[115] Posted by Emi Fong on 01.18.2012

I absolutely love FFTS! It is my all time favorite! My Number 1! Can’t keep count of how many times I’ve re-read it.

I just wish there was a movie. I mean come on so many romance movies are made, why can’t they make FFTS into a motion film. It’d rock.

Maybe that is unachievable. Then how about making FFTS into an audiobook. Will that be happening anytime soon? How can we fans make it occur sooner?

[116] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.18.2012

Fiona, thanks!  Hope you enjoy LiF; it’s much more of a “feel-good” light-hearted type of book than most of my others.

Emi, I WISH they would do audiobooks!  I don’t know how to get that going—maybe write letters to audible.com?? Thank you and glad you enjoy the book.

[117] Posted by stefanie G on 01.20.2012

Dear Ms Kinsale !
You are THE STAR of historical romance! Absolutely The Best!
I am an avid reader, but never have read any romance novels till last year. Your novels are a French cousin, a rare finding indeed, in a sea of fries and macaroni and cheese of romance.
My favorite is FFTS and SATS.
I have seen multiple patients in my life ( due to my profession), so I was so relieved that Duke`s libido did not suffered after his major cerebral event…: I love Maddy, and understand her character well, as well as changes that Christian went trough.
Your brilliant writing described so perfectly how our strength and pride can turn out to be merely a weakness and shame, when circumstances change.
I am not interested in seeing any of your books made into movie:for simple reason- they will not be able to convey the depth of emotions present in Your writing. 
I am Polish ( English is my second language ) and feel sad that your beautiful stories were not translated ,so far to my native language. 
Dear Ms. Laura You have amazing talent! Please keep writing!!!

[118] Posted by Nina on 01.23.2012

Ms. Laura!
i can’t express with words what this book means to me, i’m 19 years old and i’ve read all of your books, but this book is perfection, Christian is my favorite character of all time!, but i really really want to ask you this because i’m making an essay about this book for homework, my question is, why is it called Flowers From the Storm?, i have a lot of hypothesis but i would love to know the real answer. i would really appreciate it

[119] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.26.2012

Stefanie, thank you, you made me chuckle with the comparison to a French cousin among the macaroni and cheese. ;)

Nina, you know what?  I can’t remember why I gave the book that title.  An intensification of the old cliche, April showers bring May flowers, I suppose! (Is that a reasonable excuse?)  I was never very happy with that title, and wish I were better at thinking up good titles! Good luck with your essay, and probably your hypotheses are better than mine. ;)

[120] Posted by Lisa Schattner on 04.10.2012

PLEASE see if you can put this book in AUDIO format. I’ve a friend whose head injury makes read difficult, but she can listen just fine.

[121] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.10.2012

I’d love for it to be made into an audiobook.  Unfortunately, audio publishers are just like book publishers—they decide what books they want to do, and I don’t have any control over that :) You might want to direct your wish to one of the publishers of audiobooks on audible.com.

[122] Posted by Rewa Cerezo on 04.19.2012

Dear Laura,

I wanted to read a good romance book, some book that had quality characters & plot, so i googled “the 10 best romance novels” & yours was 1 that was listed, so i got curious. I was thinkn how do they choose the 10 best? i mean there’s tons of wonderful writers, so. Of course, “Pride n Predjudice” was also in the top 10, no surprise.

Ive been reading various novels, science fiction, classical, etc. & havent really come across a good love story, one i can go “ahh, so sweet, so romantic!” So far, all the romance novels i hav come across are a bit trashy, love scenes are well, blunt & some rate like a XXX.

BUT your book, “Flowers From the Storm,” such top notch writing! Ive
NEVER read a novel 2x, but this one, i did, not even Twilight(not that i consider that top notch writing.)

I was so enraptured by the book, i was looking for normal paperback or Hardback, but that pic, ehhh, kind of does an injustice to the story. So, i only have the mass paperback, crinkled already on the edges, its a keeper for me, wanted another one, but not mass pb.

I bought 3 other books of yours cuz i love the way you write, just got the Amazon box today! So excited. I would love to see this book in a movie, how i wish! Unfortunately, Hollywud seems to be into more provocative & dirty plots. I was just reading that they bought movie rights to the book “50 Shades of Grey.” 

i also bought the book cuz its been in the news, Good Morning America was talkn about it, so i had to see what all the fuss was about. Ok, its a trashy book, entertaining, but not quality. Plot betwn the 2 lovers is not unique, its a XXX book too, not Twlight stuff, no, pure Adult. I can see why its selling like hot potatoes in our You Tube & Reality show society.

In any case, PLEASE KEEP WRITING, your writing is refreshing & definitely pure romance,old fashioned writing. From Hawaii, Rewa.

[123] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.24.2012

I’m very glad you found FLOWERS and enjoyed it so much!  Since you are from Hawaii, I hope you also try THE SHADOW AND THE STAR.  I love to visit the islands.

[124] Posted by Rewa on 04.27.2012

Hmmm…just finished reading Shadow Heart, NOW it’s toss up betwn FS & SH. If there’s Nobel Prize awards of romance novels, i hoped u got some! I cant praise enough of ur writing, it’s top notch, even the luv scenes, so poetic. You say enough where u leave it up to the reader’s imagination.

It’s funny to read the feedback on Amazon, some were uneasy w/ Elena falling in luv w/ the abductor/rapist, Allegreto. It reminded me of the “Stockholm Snydrome.” That 1st love scene, idk, it wasnt so perverse, even the heroine admitted she was unsure of her feelings of that 1st uninvited intimate encounter in his dark chambers.

She didnt like the fact she was violated w/o consent, but b/c The Raven was like her “Dark Angel” she always felt was w/ her sinz youth, the forced intimacy was tolerated, plus it helped he was superduper handsome. So, oddly enough it was a wild fantasy for her. And i believ for some women in reality, i mean, most opinions of SH were positive; only a few thought falling in luv w/ ur abductor thought it was perverse.  Although, its no more perverse when a student falls infactuated w/ their professor, or vice versa, in this day & age. Love comes in many shades.

But as the characters develop, so does their passion & their relationship. I loved the 2 main characters, the plot, the whole darn story. i was shocked how young Hell Cat was, but what was Raven’s age? I cant remember if book mentioned it.

In any case, i might have to reread SH b/c this story definitely had more depth than Flowers, more historical value woven in.  I also, will hav to buy “4 my Lady’s Heart,” didnt know this was a sequel.
I did read Midnt Moon, a more light-hearted read, very cute, made me want to go buy a hedgehog! or a lil’ guinea pig.

Yes i’m on a Kinsale Marathon, steadily though, i dont want to read ALL ur bks in 1mth cuz i’ll be so sad when i’m done w/ all. I have to savor some for the summer reading on the beach & for some chocolate & coffee. <;-))

[125] Posted by Rewa on 04.27.2012

Oops i meant Midsummer Moon, idk why i thought Midnight. Oh, nevermind, cuz my next book will be Prince of Midnt, i knew i was mixing somethg up, silly. I dont hav Shadow Star yet, its on its way, w/ 3 others, cant wait to see how Hawaii’s thrown into the story.

[126] Posted by laura kinsale on 04.28.2012

Lol about the Nobel prize of romance novels—that’s quite a compliment!  Thank you!

[127] Posted by Irene on 08.09.2012

Hi.  I just wanted to tell you that even though I read a lot, I rarely keep any of the books I have read.  Most end up in yard sales or are given away.  A few however make it to my book shelf and they will NEVER be given up!  Some that have made the cut are: An anthology of Edgar Allen Poe’s work, Lovely Bones by Alice Sebold (Amazing book, horrible move….I’m just sayin’ ) Anything by Jane Austin (of course), Don Quixote, The Book of Unholy Mischief by Elle Newmark, AND Flowers from the Storm.  My copy is so old the pages are yellow, the binding is a mess and one of my dogs chewed the corner. I still wont throw it away. It is an amazing novel.  Just wanted to let you know. Thanks.

[128] Posted by Kathleen Gerberick on 08.28.2012

I can no longer keep count of the number of copies of this book that I have purchased since I first read Flowers From The Storm—I was like an evangelist—Here, you have GOT to read this!!! And it is on every list I make at someone’s request for my favorite authors/books! I don’t know how many times I have read it over the years, but I never tire of it and love dropping back into Maddy and Christian’s world. AND I just got an iPad and purchased it as a Kindle book! (I don’t care that I already own multiple copies (it case I want to pass one on) as hard-copies…that’s NOT the point!) Anyway…just wanted to say thanks for all the enjoyment you’ve provided over the years—with the book especially! I rode up with you in the elevator at the RWA conference the year it was a Rita Finalist and I still say “You was robbed!!!”

[129] Posted by Fred on 10.07.2012

Hi Rewa its me fred

[130] Posted by Susie on 01.11.2013

It is because of the compassion scene.  That is why I adore FFTS so.  It is the first romance novel that I’ve read where the leading lady shows compassion towards “the other woman” who was unintentionally led by the leading man.  (Yes, I’m transfixed by Christian’s bad boy image, too, but let’s admit, he would have been a guest on Maury or Dr. Phil for the many misdeeds that he had done in his past.)  Compassion, forgiveness, and acceptance are the reasons why I adore FFTS so.  Thank you, Laura Kinsale, for creating a 533-page emotional masterpiece.

[131] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.13.2013

Thank you, Susie.  I actually think that’s my favorite scene too, and sometimes when readers complain about Maddy being judgmental, I wonder if they read it. :)

[132] Posted by Cinzia on 01.19.2013

Hi Laura, I’m an italian left handed woman and I hope that you will forgive me for my “terrible” english.
I just want you to know that I’ve already read the book in italian as “La figlia del matematico” and now I’m trying to read it in english as “flowers from the storm” And I absolutely love it!!!! Thank you for this amazing love story and for the Duke of Jervaulx!!!! Lot of love from Italy!

[133] Posted by laura kinsale on 01.20.2013

Cinzia, I’m so glad you love the book!  And your English is quite good.  Besides, Jervaulx had some serious trouble with English too so you are not alone. ;)

[134] Posted by Ada on 02.19.2013

I’m reading Flowers From The Storm right now and imagining Duke of Jervaulx as this man: http://img.photobucket.com/albums/v216/JL486/001-vi.jpg

[135] Posted by laura kinsale on 02.21.2013

Not bad, Ada!  Just need to put dark blue contacts on him. ;)

[136] Posted by Manuela on 06.06.2013

Ms. Kinsale, I think I’m in love with you. And I fear this comment will be quite long, please pardon me.
I’m an Italian aspiring writer and I think now, after 5 of your books, that you are quite the goddess. I read directly in English because I don’t like the translations (sometimes I wish I could be the one to translate all your works in Italian so I would be sure it would be done with great love and respect and precision) and by the way they haven’t translated all your books in Italian.
The first I read was “Seize the fire” and I loved that book like a crazy. Like. A. Crazy.
After that I bought all your other books and now I’m slowly doing the booklist. I just finished “Flowers from the storm” now. I read it in 4 days only because I didn’t have time and I was crazy when I couldn’t go on reading and I had to do the things I must do in my life. The characters stayed with me always, I was quite obsessed, I feel a little bit ashamed to say this, but I really couldn’t stop thinking of Christian or Maddy, or a scene, or a dialogue… I won’t say that I have loved them all the time, especially Maddy sometimes made me frustrated with her choices, but I have understood her and her internal battle well, I felt compassion for her, even if it has not been easy to understand her because I’m not so religious. I think between the two, it’s her who had the greater internal struggle, a real war inside, because Christian yes, he had a big struggle, but more material or “mechanical” I think, Maddy instead had really a deep war inside. What you have done is masterful, it’s magic, I really don’t know how to describe how much you are good with words and how much you write beautifully for me.
Probably you will not remember the details as it’s a long time you wrote this and maybe you haven’t re-read it recently, but there is one small detail in the end that left me a little bit sad. It’s been in the ending when Maddy goes to Christian after big scene in the Meeting. The fact is, I have the impression she is led “externally” to that. After so much internal struggle and battle and thinking, I would have liked that she arrived to the conclusion alone, and not because Christian, for the “n” time, spoke her plainly. And also Christian is there only because the father thought to go to him and ask him to go at the Meeting to listen… What if Maddy’s father didn’t do that? And if Christian didn’t wait or didn’t speak, but felt humiliated and angry and left? She would have stayed a Quaker pretending to believe in what she wrote in her paper?
I know you gave signs of what she really felt and thought, for example the fact that she couldn’t write the condemnation paper, or when she tried she cried a lot, or when she read it she was crying but then when she went to Christian she was serene and calm, so it’s clear that the true feeling of her heart were the ones toward Christian but why hasn’t she arrived all alone to that? At least in the end…
By the way, even after having said that, I still think that this is one of the most beautiful book I have ever read and that you are a goddess.
Last thing, I swear, I’ll tell you one of my most beloved scenes and words (there are many), but I really loved when Maddy met Diana for the first time and understood she was the bastard daughter of Christian and Eydie and Maddy was shocked and thought that she should feel angry and ashamed and sad, instead she just felt love because even dishonor was a loveable thing if it was his.
Did you remember you wrote something so absurdly romantic, intelligent and touching? :)
Now I want to buy the audiobook of “Flowers from the storm” and I will buy also “Seize the fire” if it comes out. I like the voice of Nicholas Boulton and his beautiful accent and I think that in this way I will improve my capacity of understanding spoken English and also the correct pronunciations, because sometimes, even if I understand what a word means, I’m not quite sure how it is pronounced. The only thing, I just have to understand how it works, as I have never bought an audiobook before. :S
I love your work, I hope you keep on writing always. :)

[137] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.07.2013

I’m really glad to hear that you enjoy my books, and that you are a writer! I do wonder what my books are like in translation, and can only hope they are a little close to what I wrote. 

As to Maddy in the Quaker meeting, I think sometimes we become so confused and in pain in our hearts, that it takes something outside, maybe even something as simple as a flower or an animal that speaks to us in a way that turns our thoughts, and lets us see our in reality as we haven’t seen it clearly before.  I think what Maddy heard from Christian was that he would keep his daughter, no matter what, and that one thing changed everything for her. I’ll let you and other readers have your own conclusions because that’s what a novel is—something we can all see in our own way.  And sometimes the way we see it even changes, with our lives or time or reading it again and seeing things we didn’t notice before.  That’s how I think our minds grow.

I’m really glad to hear you will try the audiobooks.  If you need help understanding how Audible or AudibleUK work, you can go to http://www.audiogals.net.  They know all about audiobooks and would love to help with any technical questions.

[138] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.07.2013

Oh, and I should add that Seize the Fire will definitely be coming out as an audiobook, read by Nick Boulton.  I’m not sure when yet, as we are doing several before it, but later this year or early next years.  Flowers from the Storm is out now on Audible and iTunes. 

You can go to http://www.hedgehoginc.com to get the links.  All the audiobooks will be listed there.

[139] Posted by Manuela on 06.08.2013

Thank you for your answer, and you are right, sometimes our perception of a book changes in time and Flowers from the storm is definetly a book I will read again and again in future.
Also, sometimes when I don’t completely get what the author wants to do, I like to speak about it, that’s why I wrote you, because the point of view of others helped me in the past to get something, and who is better then the author? What you told me, in fact, already gave me something to think about.

Regarding audiobook, I just have to understand how to do to be able to hear it in my car, where I don’t have the access of a USB key. But my husband will help me. For the moment I want the 2 books I have named, but I haven’t finished your booklist yet (I read only 5 until now), maybe there will be something else I will want, I’m glad to hear you are doing this with all your books. I will keep an eye for Seize the fire.

Regarding translations in Italian… Maybe it’s better if you don’t know it…
I haven’t read your books in Italian, because with you I don’t want to risk. I know how you write and I fear a translation would only upset me. I know the editions in which they have been done by the way, and I can at least tell you that for Flowers from the storm it’s a good one, I mean, the text should have been translated entirely, whether regarding your other books, knowing the type of those editions, they have been most probably cut. :(

Thanks again for taking the time to answer me, you really made me happy. :)

[140] Posted by Daisy Trinh on 06.08.2013

Dear Mss Laura.
After reading your fiction novel : Flowers from the storm which is traslated into Vietnamese language, I am so eager to enjoy your attracting work in your own language.So I would like to ask for a chance to buy this book from you. Could you please let me know whether this book is still available for me.
I am really love your characrters in this amazing novel.
I am waiting forr your reply.
Best regards,
Daisy
Hanoi, Vietnam

[141] Posted by laura kinsale on 06.08.2013

Yes, Daisy, Flowers from the Storm is still in print.  You can go to the Buy links at the upper right-hand corner of this page to see quite a few places it is for sale.  I’m not sure where you can order it but perhaps Amazon UK?  (I’ve just made sure the links are up to date.)

[142] Posted by Lady Wesley on 07.11.2013

I already knew from reading your books that you are a genius, but this point is reinforced by your choice of Nicholas Boulton to do your audiobooks. I just finished Flowers from the Storm and was blown away. What a talent! He more than met the challenge of voicing a man who has been impaired by a stroke. And yet, at the same time, he was thoroughly convincing as sweet, innocent Maddie-girl. I hope he does all of your books from now on!

[143] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.11.2013

Thank you Lady Wesley, for listening to the audiobook. Isn’t Nick amazing?? I personally think he’s an alien. ;)

And YES, he will be narrating ALL of my backlist, except for Lessons in French, because Sourcebooks won’t give me back the audio rights for it. *frown*

The Dream Hunter will be released next as an audiobook, and it’s even better than FFTS, in my opinion.  Hard to believe but there are moments in it that just broke my heart.

[144] Posted by Lisa Schatt on 07.12.2013

I don’t understand the audio bit. Do you download the book and burn it to a CD?

[145] Posted by laura kinsale on 07.12.2013

Hi, Lisa,

If you have either iTunes or buy it from Audible.com, it’s a lot simpler than that! Allow me to go into my “Audiobooks are so easy and cool these days!” pep talk!

Audible.com makes it the easiest to do, but you do have to use their apps. You can become a trial member to see if you like it. (And I get a little bonus if you choose one of my audiobooks as one of your first three.) Once you buy an audiobook, and install the app on your smartphone, or whatever device you want to use, it will automatically download and you can listen.  This makes it really easy and convenient to listen while exercising and such.

It’s very similar with iTunes, you just download the same way you d/l music to your listening device.

You can go to my audiobook website at http://www.hedgehoginc.com or use the “audiobook” link above to listen to sample clips.  There is a Buy button for each audiobook which leads directly to Audible.com, and also links for the books on iTunes and to AudibleUK in the audiobook descriptions.

I’ve been listening to audiobooks for years, they are wonderful for long drives and doing chores and exercising and all those boring things.  I wanted mine to really be enjoyable for listeners, so I chose a very special narrator, Nick Boulton. Go listen to the samples and let me know what you think!

[146] Posted by laurie eller on 08.01.2013

oh my. i can’t tell you what a wonderful journey i had when listening to Flowers on audio. it was fabulous. captured my heart right away and i couldn’t stop listening. literally, keeping me up till the early dawn hours. it was crazy.

i just wanted to stop in and say thank you. can’t wait to begin the next book on audible. i’ve been an audible member for seven years and this is easily at the top of my list of favorites. :) i often enjoy listening while i work in my studio and your book made my work day fly by.

thanks again!
laurie eller

[147] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.02.2013

So GLAD you enjoyed it, Laurie!  The Dream Hunter is just out a few days ago, read by Nick. It’s one of my favorite recordings so far—very emotional!

[148] Posted by Lar Son on 08.21.2013

Laura, This book has been and continues to be one of my favorite and beloved books.  I purchased it when it was first published and I was moved to tears and laughter.  I was so pleased when it became available through Audible Books.  The narrator Nicholas Boulton does an excellent job portraying Christian’s labored speech and mental challenges.  Once again, your beautiful characters have come to life and I am enchanted by their story.  Thank you

[149] Posted by laura kinsale on 08.22.2013

That’s wonderful to hear, Lar Son. I’ve really enjoyed finding out that people loved Nick’s Boulton’s narration. We worked hard to get it right! Hope you like the others too!

[150] Posted by shelbey on 08.25.2013

Ms Kinsale:

I got FFTS from the library around the time it was first published.  Then I bought it. Then I gave it away. Then I got a new copy, and still have it, the Fabio cover one.  I’ve given it as a traveling gift to a friend who, unlike me, was a talented math student.  I’ve lost count how many times I’ve read this book.  I’m an amateur writer, and I can tell the parts of my writing that have been influenced by FFTS, especially the honest inner monologues chock full of description and introspection.  I love that in this novel you take the time to explore the inside of the characters—they are rich and complex and beautiful.

Every time I re-read this book, I notice something different. (I cannot tell you how long I spent trying to figure out the exact year the story’s set, based on the passage of time and the historical characters.) I’ve deciphered almost all of the distorted dialogue from early in the book. (“Wilveewell,” my favorite.)

And then there are the lines and scenes that stay with me even in the years between re-reads: “She’ll be cold, and they won’t care”; or Christian’s plan of last resort to throw himself off the tower; or the one that slays me every time:  “I don’t deserve thee.” Others have mentioned the Meeting House scene; it makes me cry, too.

I don’t read too many romance novels nowadays; they seem to be too much of the blah blah sex scene blah blah variety, with no real three dimensional characters.  It’s rare to find a novel with secondary characters like Durham, Aunt Vesta, Mr. Timms, and even Dr. Timms (who, I must confess, gets a bit of a bad rap—I have a soft spot in my heart for his mission), who live in shades of grey, who have actual motivations beyond driving the plot forward.

Anyway, I’m finishing it up yet again, and decided to see if there was anything online about it.  Found this blog and needed to tell you how much I love this book.  (And now I may have to get the audiobook as well.  Blast.)

[151] Posted by laura kinsale on 09.14.2013

Oops sorry, I missed this Shelby!

Thank you so much for writing it. I agree, Dr. Timms isn’t a bad guy.

I hope you do try the audiobook; I’ve found they are a whole unique world, like seeing it through a mirror that changes it but it’s just as real—only different.

[152] Posted by Mandi on 10.12.2013

I just listened to this audiobook. It was very highly rated on audible and I wanted something to get lost in.

Wow. It really swept me up. Amazingly different and touching. Excellent narrator, too. I didn’t expect that. I was afraid hearing a man read the sexy parts would make me cringe, but I was so caught up in the moments I didn’t notice.

Now I’m going to get as many of your audio books as I can, which is why I came to your site, so I’d know what order to listen in.  I love that you have posted original covers with Fabio. I read tons of romance novels when I was in high school and I think I recognize at least one of the covers!

I’m so glad I found your books on audible!

[153] Posted by laura kinsale on 10.12.2013

So glad you enjoyed it, Mandi! In case you missed it all the info about my audiobooks read by Nick Boulton can be found at http://www.hedgehoginc.com

[154] Posted by Laura on 10.25.2013

Wow! Wow, wow, wow! Just listened to audio version (Nicholas Boulton was the PERFECT choice) and I’m blown away. My grandmother suffered the same injury and lived with us when I was 12. She was a science teacher and for a time everything she said was about elements from the periodic table. I could totally understand Christian’s ease at talking mathematics but not being able to utter simple words or phrases. What an incredible journey - I felt like I had a front row seat to a spectacular journey of love, redemption, acceptance ... I couldn’t stop listening. I just finished last night and I feel like I miss them all today. I’m started listening all over again just to try to recapture the “lost in the story” euphoria that only a great story and performance can deliver. I can’t believe I didn’t read anything by you earlier but I’m so glad I’ve discovered you now. Getting ready to download my next Laura Kinsale/Nicholas Boulton audio book and I’m both giddy and reticent because I can’t imagine the good fortune of finding magic like this more than once!

[155] Posted by laura kinsale on 10.28.2013

Laura, that makes me very happy to hear! Some of my books are quite different, but the ones that are more similar to FFTS in intensity are For My Lady’s Heart and Shadowheart, coming out on audio in November.

Laura

[156] Posted by Shelbey on 11.04.2013

Ms Kinsale:

I took your advice and bought the audio book of FFTS.  It was even better than I had hoped. It certainly made my commute pretty wonderful each day.  You were right in your previous response: listening to the narration provides a perspective you can’t get just by reading.  I read fast, headlong through great prose; Mr Boulton has the knack of pausing just so, making you focus on every single well chosen word.  I had worried that the word distortions would come across stilted and fake sounding. Mr Boulton’s talent put that to rest immediately. I’m hooked, although I fear that any subsequent audio book will leave me disappointed after this perfection. I’ve started again from the beginning, taking the journey with Maddy and Christian again.  I only wish I could listen for the first time again. Awesome book, awesome recording.

[157] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.09.2013

Well, I’m thrilled you tried the audiobook and enjoyed it! We worked hard to get the aphasic passages right—I don’t think anyone but Nick could have done them as well.

Laura

[158] Posted by Gul (SLP Graduate Student) on 11.23.2013

Ms. Kinsale,
I am from Turkey. When I read this book. I did not know anything about Aphasia. Esp. Broca Aphasia, which is I think, Hero’s disorder. Now, I am reading flowers from the storm again. And, recommending my friends. Thanks for this and your aother marvelous book.

[159] Posted by laura kinsale on 11.24.2013

Thank you for posting, Gul! I had the pleasure of visiting Istanbul a few years ago. I loved it!

[160] Posted by Leticia on 11.28.2013

Ms Kinsale,

I am a huge Brazilian fan of your books.
The first one I bought was Flowers from the Storm, and it has become one of my favorites romance, so much that from time to time I take the time to read it again and have the same feeling of wonder as the first time.
After FFTS I read:
- For my lady’s heart
- Shadowheart
- The dream hunter
- The prince of Midnight
All those are amazing and what surprised me is that you do not follow a formula like so many other romance writers. Each book is unique with captivating heroes and heroines.
Thank you for writing them and making our lives so much brighter.
Regards from Brazil.

[161] Posted by laura kinsale on 12.20.2013

I’m so glad to hear from you Leticia. It makes me smile to know my books have brightened your life.

Laura

[162] Posted by ancilia on 01.12.2014

hi.. I’ve heard so much of this book.. and i am going nuts because I am not able to get hold of it. I luv the story line.. I hope I could get this book somehow.. :’(

[163] Posted by Patricia on 01.24.2014

I’ve said it before and I will say it again. I can’t stop reading this book. By far the most amazing love story

[164] Posted by Patricia on 02.09.2014

Still reading Flowers, I have lost track of the number of times I have read it. The Duke is still A heart grabber.

[165] Posted by Evie on 02.28.2014

I just wanted to tell you how much I have enjoyed your novel. I have not read romantic fiction for many years and now realize you need very good author to give you an outstanding story.

As a history teacher I love the way you used the historical events in the book linking in Wellington and the King. I don’t think many people realize how forward thinking the British Quakers were at this time.

The story was a marvel to read,
Thank you!

[166] Posted by Laura Kinsale on 02.28.2014

Patricia, thank you, I love hearing that people enjoy re-reading my books!

Evie, thank you, I really do like historical research, and learning about the Quakers was a favorite. Lots of unusual and little known things to learn about them.

[167] Posted by Suzanne Farrand on 04.20.2014

Dear Laura-

What is it that draws me back to “Flowers from the Storm” time after time?  I think that it is that all our stories are that of Christian and Maddy even though their story is extreme. 

Most of us don’t fit perfectly into the world in which we find ourselves.  As people well aware of our flaws, we all need to reach far outside our comfort zone to find a lasting deep connection with another person.  Only the very human gifts of love can propel us forward past fear and the false comfort of the familiar.  Only love can grant us the tolerance of our own flaws and the flaws of our beloved to find the connection we crave.

When I am asked why I read romance novels, I asked my questioner to read “Flowers from the Storm” and then we can talk.

All the best,
Suzanne

[168] Posted by Maria on 04.27.2014

When I first read this book I posted a comment here. Back then I did not identify myself. My nme is Maria and I’m from Portugal. My sister offer me this book in a birthay sometime ago. It was the first book in my life that I read twice. Worst than that: it was the first book of my life that I started from the begining right after I read the last page. In fact I must say that I come to Christian and Maddy at least once a year. I simply can’t live without them.
By the way, I still believe Hugh Jackman is the best for the part. This story must get to cinema.
Kind regards.

[169] Posted by Laura Kinsale on 04.28.2014

Suzanne, thanks so much, that is a very wise thought. Sometimes it’s very hard to connect, I guess romances explore that dream often.

Maria, so glad to hear from you! Hearing that readers find themselves coming back to the story over again is the finest complement a writer can receive. Thank you!

Laura

[170] Posted by Ai Nhi on 08.25.2014

Dear Ms. Kinsale,

I’m from Vietnam and I have just finished reading the translated version of your beautiful, inspiring and heart-warming novel “Flowers from the storm” (I know the original book was published a long time ago, but until recently did I have the chance to get my hand on the story, since here in Vietnam we need to wait for rather a long time for a foreign book to be translated and published. And I also don’t think there was any chance for me to purchase the original book, since the price is rather high when exchanged into Vietnamese currency). I must say it is the best historical romance novel I’ve read so far in my avidly-reading life.

The novel is so beautifully different than any other historical romance novels I read before, that it instantly left a permanent impression on me. It has everything I ask for in a historical romance novel, and even beyond that. It has the love story between two imperfect people; the long, amazing, full of ups and downs journey of theirs to finally arrive at happiness; and what I love most, is the sacred meaning of love and marriage, told in the most beautiful way through the struggling words of Christian. The part of Christian telling The Truth is his love for Maddy at the nearly end of the book really touched my heart (I did cry when I read this part).

After indulging myself in the book, I really hope that there would be a sequel or a movie based on the book, but it’s a little bit sad when I read your above comments that the sequel is not likely to happen (I know it’s up to the author to decide what to write, but it still upsets me a little bit…). And what upsets me more is the fact that historical romance is not the favorite choice for movie makers to bring the the big screen…

Anyway, for the mean time, I just keep fantasizing about Christian and Maddy ^^, and hope that someday I’ll get my hands on all of your novels and let myself indulge in many more beautiful historical romance stories like “Flowers in the storm” :))

[171] Posted by Laura Kinsale on 08.25.2014

I’m so happy to hear from you in Vietnam.  I’d noticed that there was a translation—it’s really nice to know someone is actually reading it! Perhaps there will be more titles to come…that’s in the hands of my foreign rights agent.

I think a movie would be cool too, but it would probably have actors I didn’t like or something! So maybe better to leave that to our imaginations.

Thank you for commenting and so glad you enjoyed the book.

Yours,

Laura

[172] Posted by Andrea Lewis on 10.17.2014

Dear Ms. Kinsale,

I had a good thing going.  On Friday evenings I would leave my world of being mother, wife and career woman and drift away to a different time and place.  Yes, I had become my mother (who along with her firends would exchange Mills amd Boons regularly. I didn’t get it back then)  reading mostly Harlequin Presents and regency romances. Somehow I stumbled on this book and my Friday evenings have not been the same since.  Nothing else compares to this.  I compare everything nothing else measures up.  You have spoilt me for other books Ms. Kinsale.  I even bought the audio so I could listen with my ear phones.

What I would really like to know is how a geologist who should be testing soil smaples and writing reports ended up writing the best romance I have ever read.

[173] Posted by Laura Kinsale on 10.17.2014

Hah! Glad you enjoyed it.  (I did my time with the samples and reports, still love geology but writing is a lot more fun way to make a living!)

Thank you for buying the audiobook. I feel as if Nicholas Boulton makes each book “new” even if a reader has already read them.

Laura

[174] Posted by Julie Fetter on 10.22.2014

Did anyone tell you yet? Flowers From the Storm was chosen by popular vote of club members as the book to read for November online discussion by the Old School Romance Book Club on Facebook! 870 of us will be reading and discussing, some for the first time and many repeat readers. Happy thought, indeed!

[175] Posted by Laura Kinsale on 10.22.2014

That’s an honor!  Hope you all enjoy it!

Name:

Email: (required)

URL:

Notify me of follow-up comments?

Please enter the word you see in the image below: