The cinematic prologue had me instantly hooked, as did the world of botany, perfume, potions and intrigue. Sara's characters are wonderfully drawn, the writing is so evocative, and sumptuously imagined. Not since Patrick Suskind's Perfume has a book had such a strong sensory impact on me. I was intoxicated! A feast for the senses... The Fair Botanists is dazzling.
Dazzling, original, full of wonderful characters and so interesting! Anyone who's ever looked at a flower will love it as much as I do.
A seductive, sensory romp through Georgian Edinburgh. Hugely enjoyable. Highly recommended
Perfectly paced, romantic and full of intrigue, The Fair Botanists is a truly wonderful story where women take centre stage. The writing is exquisite.
Sprinkled with deliciously tantalising scandal and intrigue, and colourful, engaging characters. A sheer joy to read
There's no enlightenment without enlightening women, and Sara Sheridan gives us two great ones to reckon with in Belle and Elizabeth. The Fair Botanists gives us a glimpse into the complex life of Edinburgh in the 1820's with joyous female characters at the heart of the story
Historical fiction at its best, full of atmosphere, with beautifully drawn characters and a thoroughly intriguing story
What a setting and cast of characters! This seductive and sensual novel comes from a writer at the height of her powers. Captured my senses, and my heart
Compelling, fascinating and incisive about its social context. A cracking good read
A fascinating and beautiful evocation of Edinburgh. I adored this wonderful book and didn't want it to end
The Fair Botanists beguiles all the senses in this tale of intrigue in Enlightenment Edinburgh. An entertaining read
I loved this vivid evocation of Enlightenment Edinburgh - a city in the throes of tumultuous change - filled with a cast of fascinating characters, both real and imagined. Highly recommended.
Beautiful . . . Every sentence is a gift. If you love The Doll Factory or The Binding, you'll love this
A cleverly crafted novel offering a heady mix of secrets, intrigue, skulduggery and romance. Immersive and engaging, I couldn't put it down!
Sheridan brings the Scottish Enlightenment brilliantly to life in this vibrant, evocative novel about female friendship, empowerment and transformation
Joyously seductive prose with evocatively-drawn characters, The Fair Botanists is a beautiful tale of scandal and intrigue firmly rooted in the capital of 1820s Scotland.
A stunning, stylish book, packed to the brim with delicious and deeply sensual experiences. The setting, the brilliantly drawn cast of passionate characters and the vivid descriptions of the burgeoning plants and flowers will stay with me for a very long time. This is a gem to savour and read over and over again.
Impressively researched, The Fair Botanists weaves incredible fact - the transfer of the Botanic Gardens to a new site and the incredible journey of the trees across the city, and the much-anticipated flowering of the century aloe - with the intricately-plotted loves and fortunes of Belle, a forward-thinking courtesan and perfume maker, and Elizabeth, a widow who steps out of the shadows of her unhappy marriage to learn her own worth.
Delightfully original, sensuous historical fiction, led by a charge of female characters as captivating and complex as the brightest of botanical flowers
A charm of a book. A spirited tale of female empowerment set amongst the blossoms of enlightenment Edinburgh, it is suffused with the rich perfume of its historical era. Lively and generous-hearted, with an array of utterly engaging characters, this enchanting novel reads like a warm tonic for the soul
The Fair Botanists is a ravishing tale of nature, love and secrets, told with lush prose and eloquent style. A historical, feminist masterpiece
Rich with period detail, this novel transported me to early nineteenth century Edinburgh. I loved the bold brave women at its heart and was captured by the sense of their historical moment when different futures were becoming possible for those who dared to reach for them.
A beautifully written, enchanting escapist delight, peopled with wonderful characters. I really enjoyed the exploration of growing female independence in a male world - Belle and Elizabeth will stay with me for a long time.
I enjoyed it so much! Such a gorgeous story full intrigue, plants and gorgeous imagery that utterly swept me away from the very first page. Glorious!
Sumptuous and atmospheric. A beautifully described jaunt through Georgian Edinburgh, with romance and intrigue.
In The Fair Botanists, Sheridan has expertly woven multiple strands of machinations, a heady mix of sex, intrigue, scent, and flora.
Like the Agave plant itself, this is a story full of sensual detail. I learnt new and surprising things about my city, its people and Botanic gardens
The Fair Botanists brings 1820s Edinburgh to life in glorious, meticulously researched detail. I loved watching these characters blossom, as the flowering or a rare plant has repercussions for them all. Sara Sheridan has created a captivating, utterly convincing world and a wonderfully heartwarming story.
Atmospheric, absorbing and completely immersive - I lost myself in this brilliant book
Enchanting and absorbing . . . [I enjoyed it] because it's about women and women's lives, people I know and talk to, and am
Completely enchanting and fascinating . . . a rollicking and immensely readable tale . . . Sheridan succeeds in what very few have attempted before; in imagining early 19th century Edinburgh as a genuine if imperfect city of enlightenment, a thrilling, optimistic and romantic landscape where science flourishes, beauty is created, wrongs are righted, possibilities are infinite, and women can begin to dream, at last, of how it might feel to be free.
Pacy and beautifully realised historical fiction.
This wonderful dip into life in historical Edinburgh is both enlightening and entertaining and by using historically documented characters and places is sure to delight readers interested in both history and botany.
This is a great book. An immersive read and a heartfelt, human story of science and botany
What a beautiful, immersive gem of historical fiction this is!
An absolute treat for fans of historical fiction and rich storytelling.
A vibrant mix of history, romance and mystery
Lush, seductive and scandalous, this is a gorgeous read.
Sheridan creates an evocative, enjoyable portrait of 1820s Edinburgh and of two women determined to lead independent lives.
As rare and lush as the Agave flower itself, The Fair Botanists is a richly realised, transportive delight
The storyline is compelling, the pace perfect, and the characters consistently engaging, but what made this a stand-out book for me was the quality and quantity of the research, and the skilful way that this is interwoven throughout the narrative.
Sara Sheridan weaves a vivid, bewitching tale of scandal and female empowerment.
Lush, seductive and scandalous, this is a romantic tale of two intriguing women and their evolving friendship.
Sara Sheridan, already one of the Scotland's finest historical fiction writers, excels herself in The Fair Botanists. A glorious and jaunty journey through 1820s Edinburgh, I fell in love with this book, its feisty women and luscious plants from the very first page.
With a cast of colourful characters, there's much to enjoy here.