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Flowerbed of State (A White House Gardener Mystery) Mass Market Paperback – May 3, 2011


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Flowerbed of State (A White House Gardener Mystery) + The Scarlet Pepper (A White House Gardener Mystery) + Oak and Dagger (A White House Gardener Mystery)
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Product Details

  • Series: A White House Gardener Mystery (Book 1)
  • Mass Market Paperback: 320 pages
  • Publisher: Berkley; First Edition edition (May 3, 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0425240576
  • ISBN-13: 978-0425240571
  • Product Dimensions: 1.2 x 4.1 x 6.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 5.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (22 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #785,305 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Review

"A bright blossom in the garden of cozy mysteries." --Jacklyn Brady, author of A Sheetcake Named Desire

Credible characters, a fast-paced plot, and a light look at political life in Washington, D.C., will delight cozy fans. --Publishers Weekly

This spunky new romantic suspense series is an obvious pick for readers who enjoy Julie Hyzy's "White House Chef" series (Buffalo West Wing), but also think of gardening mystery series such as Rosemary Harris's (Slugfest). --Library Journal

From the Back Cover

When it comes to gardening, Cassandra "Casey" Calhoun isn't afraid to get her hands dirty. But when it comes to murder, she's not the kind of gal to let any killer get away clean...

Casey's passion for organic gardening and eye for detail have carried her into the most important patch of land in America--the President's Park, on which sits the most important home in America: the White House.

But while she's readying the final touches on an innovative cultivation program for the First Lady to inspect, she's attacked from behind by an unknown assailant who then disappears. When she comes to, she notices some damaged foliage that leads her and the Secret Service to a dead woman in a trash can.

With the biggest opportunity of her life ready to bloom, and all the President's men plowing up her perfect plans, Casey has to dig in and root out a killer before she ends up planted herself...

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Customer Reviews

A good book to curl up with.
Diana L. Walker
I did finish the book because I was just interested enough to find out the ending.
B Squared
This cleverly-written, action-packed story is full of intrigue and suspense.
D. Love

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Lori Caswell TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on May 4, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
Casey Calhoun is not your typical assistant gardener at the White House. She was brought in by the First Lady to make the gardening at the White House more organic, more earth friendly. Casey is also very organized, observant and detail oriented. While getting the grounds ready for the annual Easter Egg Roll she is also developing a plan to present to the Grounds Committee for implementing her new organic ideas.

Fighting back a case of the nerves about her presentation she ventures out to weed one of the park's gardens. While there she is attacked from behind and ends up face down in the garden. As she comes to and is explaining what happened to a Secret Service Agent, she notices some broken limbs on a tree. When she works her way over to the damage, it leads both her and the agent to make a shocking discovery. A dead woman that has been stuffed into a trash can. Casey can't help herself from digging into case and trying to root out the killer. Doing so she puts herself not only in danger from the assailant but also may lose her job before she even has a chance to bloom.

A wonderful start to a new series!! Casey Calhoun is a gutsy, full of life character, who is not afraid to get her hands dirty. Her character develops perfectly throughout this story. You couldn't have a more perfect setting and the plot is entertaining and fast paced. A friendship that may bloom into love is also planted that I cannot wait to see flower in future editions.

Flowerbed of State is the perfect Springtime read. It also includes information on how to keep our yards and gardens blooming in more earth friendly ways as Casey prepares her presentation and fights for at least gradual change. I can't wait for the next book in this series to see where Casey takes us.
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9 of 11 people found the following review helpful By T Reader on July 5, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I really wanted to like this book. I've read and loved Julie Hyzy's White House chef series and looked forward to another series set at the White House. Boy was I disappointed. Where Julie Hyzy's chef Olivia Paras is a strong and smart woman, gardener Casey is an immature, disorganized, scatterbrained, frivolous, silly little girl.

The plot revolves around Casey discovering a dead body and her determination on solving the crime. After all, she reads mysteries and is therefore more highly qualified than the police and the Secret Service. In her pursuit of justice, Casey predictably puts herself in harm's way and is saved by the requisite handsome Secret Service agent who, for whatever reason, is besotted with dimwitted Casey. Ugh.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Patricia Bird on June 1, 2012
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Time reading Flowerbed of State was well spent. It's a light, well-written mystery with a heroine who is sympathetic and likeable. I will order the next book in the series.

My only problem with the mystery was that to me, it wasn't. I felt that the killer was too obvious from almost the beginning. Other than that, I enjoyed the book very much.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Snaps on July 21, 2013
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
Enjoy the White House setting for this series with a bit of romance. Good character formation. Not as serious as some of the mysteries I read, but a good break from my norm.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Ludmilla Fowden on August 15, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
Flowerbed of State :Loved it, read it in two days. As good as Julie Hyzy White House mysteries. Looking forward to her next book. The story rolls off the pages bringing vivid images and thrills that makes you want to get to the end to find out the solution. I must say I sort of picked the right suspect long before the end but it was still darn good reading till the last line.It had mystery,suspense and romance. A good way to escape one's daily grudges. Millie Fowden
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Diana L. Walker on July 29, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback Verified Purchase
I was glad to discover a new series and learn more about
our seat of government. The characters were entertaining.
A good book to curl up with.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Thomas Patrick Hull on June 4, 2011
Format: Mass Market Paperback
This new mystery, and purported series, is wonderful, well-written, clever and engaging. Certainly, its a topic we all enjoy, peeping inside the White House and learning of various rubrics which influence daily life -- along with a well crafted unfolding story. Special kudos to the author, Dorothy St. James!

While I thoroughly enjoyed this book as a work of art, and a good example of mystery fiction, I was made to feel a bit creepy over one issue. I felt as if I was reading Julie HYZY, and I sincerely missed Olivia Papas, who I have come to love as a wonderful fiction character. If I received this manuscript as a real-life teacher of literature, I would have rejected it as being an imitation, sometimes too much of an imitation, of Hyzy's work. For sure, it is copy-cat, which would make any professor or reviewer nervous, at least in my meek view.

Another thing that spiked my interest is that a character in Juliie Hyzy's first series was dubbed Alex St. James.
This is the same family name as Dorothy St. James, the author of this being-reviewed tome. I think the greatest element of this mystery is what is going on behind the scenes among authors, things the reader cannot even imagine. This is great fun!

THOMAS PATRICK HULL, CHICAGO
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By D. Love on May 18, 2011
Format: Kindle Edition
What a great debut series. Casey is attacked and from that moment on is following leads she collects to find a killer. The closer Casey gets, the nervous she is making the killer who is intent on causing her and those near her harm. This cleverly-written, action-packed story is full of intrigue and suspense. I love the wonderful cast which includes Casey, Jack, Gordon, Alyssa and the ever-friendly Milo. With a great setting, engaging dialogue and a comfortable feeling, this delightful series will keep you bloom-fully entertained.
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