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Wallflower in Bloom: A Novel Hardcover

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 272 pages
  • Publisher: Touchstone; 1 edition (June 5, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1451672764
  • ISBN-13: 978-1451672763
  • Product Dimensions: 8.6 x 6 x 1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 12.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.4 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (89 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #709,013 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews


"Wallflower in Bloom is absolutely, hands-down, Claire Cook's best novel to date. Cook's characters are delightful and quirky, and the storyline is fast paced and lively with just the right touch of humor and romance. Slip on your dancing shoes and enjoy a few spins around the floor with this charming novel!" - Fresh Fiction

"This is a very funny read that will make you roll your eyes about family!" (Indie Bound)

“A fun and inspiring read . . . Cook’s humor and narrative execution is impeccable; Deirdre’s increasing self-consciousness elicits support for her to overcome insecurity and endure in her journey to find happiness and fulfillment on her own terms.” —Publishers Weekly

“Filled with sweet humor and all the eye-rolling moments of jumbled yet ultimately loving family relations, romance, and coming into one’s own, this women’s fiction is a definite pleaser for devotees of the genre.” --Booklist

About the Author

Claire Cook wrote her first novel in her minivan when she was forty-five. At fifty, she walked the red carpet at the Hollywood premiere of the adaptation her second novel, Must Love Dogs, starring Diane Lane and John Cusack. She is the bestselling author of eight other novels and divides her time between the suburbs of Atlanta and Boston. Visit  ClaireCook.com.

More About the Author

I wrote my first novel in my minivan at 45. At 50, I walked the red carpet at the Hollywood premiere of the adaptation of my second novel, MUST LOVE DOGS, starring Diane Lane and John Cusack. If you have a buried dream, trust me, it is NEVER too late! And I guess it's no surprise that reinvention is the theme of my novels and my life. I like to think my novels have helped lots of women find their own next chapters, and I also take great joy in sharing what I've learned so far on my Reinvention and Writing pages at ClaireCook.com. Make sure you stop by and sign up for my newsletter to be the first to hear about my next book, plus insider extras, and fun giveaways.

I'm the USA Today bestselling author of 11 novels, and I'm hard at work turning MUST LOVE DOGS into a series. Book 2 is called MUST LOVE DOGS: NEW LEASH ON LIFE and I can't wait for you to read it. My books have been called everything from romantic comedy to women's fiction to beach reads to chick lit. Honestly, it doesn't matter to me what you call them. I just hope you read and enjoy them!

Some of the nice things that have been said about my work: "The exuberant and charming Claire Cook is one of the sassiest and funniest creators of contemporary women's fiction," according to The Times-Picayune. People Magazine says my writing "goes down as easy as it sounds," Good Housekeeping calls it "laugh-out-loud," Redbook "gleefully quirky" and the Chicago Tribune "funny and pitch perfect." The Today Show featured me as a "Today's Woman."

Shelf Awareness said, "Claire Cook (Must Love Dogs) has build a brand writing light-hearted women's fiction blending kernels of the absurd and comedic in compulsively readable combinations." If that one wasn't so long, I might have considered getting it tattooed!

I've been a judge for the Family Circle magazine fiction contest, a finalist and a judge for the Thurber Prize for American Humor, and the Beach Read Festival fiction and grand prize winner. I've spoken at the Tennessee Williams Literary Festival, Cape Cod Writers Center, Savannah Book Festival, the California Women's Conference, and given keynotes at the Dress for Success International Conference, the Missouri Writers Guild Conference, and the Amelia Island Book Festival. My books have been translated into 14 languages.

I was born in Virginia, and lived for many years in Scituate, Massachusetts, a beach town between Boston and Cape Cod. My husband and I have recently moved to the suburbs of Atlanta to be closer to our two adult kids, who actually want us around again! I spend a lot of time hanging out on Facebook (http://facebook.com/ClaireCook), Twitter (http://twitter.com/ClaireCookwrite) and Pinterest (http://pinterest.com/ClaireCookwrite), and I hope you'll join me there! And don't forget to sign up for my newsletter (http://clairecook.com/newsletter/) so you stay in the loop about upcoming releases, as well as giveaways and insider extras.

I have the world's most fabulous readers and I'm forever grateful to you all for giving me the gift of this career. Midlife Rocks!


Customer Reviews

Fun summer read!
The story was excellent, beautifully written and heartwarming.
Amazon Customer
It is so easy to relate to Dierdre, the main character.
Laurie W-J-N

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By JerseyGirl VINE VOICE on June 21, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Wallflower in Bloom: A Novel is not my favorite Claire Cook book but if you want a cute and quick read to throw in your beachbag this summer then this latest from the author will fill the bill.

Dee Dee Griffin is the personal assistant for her very famous brother, Tag Griffin, a self-help guru who has his entire family, including his ex-wives, helping to run his new age worship empire. But none is so hung up in his personal sphere as sister Dee Dee; she is so into his life that she finds she has no life of her own. One day the fact that Tag's life is overwhelming her own life causes Dee Dee to chuck it all and disappear for a few days. While doing her disappearing act, Dee decides to try out for Dancing with the Stars and uses her brother's bigger than life self to get her on the show.

Dee learns about herself and her value while hitting the road and joining the Dancing with the Stars show; the book deals with the author's favorite topic - a woman's search for renewal and empowerment. This is a topic that has appeared in other Claire Cook books so Wallflower in Bloom: A Novel continues in that flavor.

The second chapter is one of the funniest for me when Dee is in the elevator with what turns out to be an old college friend of her brother, Tag. Other chapters are fun but not as laugh out loud funny as this. This is not my favorite Claire Cook novel,however, it is a lively and quick read for a day on the porch or at the beach this summer.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Harriet Klausner #1 HALL OF FAME on June 5, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Deirdre Griffin feels like a ghost when compared to her siblings. This she feel is especially true as she is at best a wilted wallflower in comparison to her charismatic brother Tag, considered the "next big thing." As his personal assistant and house sitter Deirdre puts up with a lot, but in Austin, she abruptly quits when she feels he abuses her support of him.

When her on and off boyfriend tells her he is marrying the woman carrying his baby, Deirdre explodes as he had told her no children. Intoxicated by drinking Tag's vodka, Deirdre uses her sibling's humongous massive online fan base to arrange for her inclusion on Dancing with the Stars as she decides it is past time for a wallflower to bloom.

This amusing lighthearted contemporary story is a strong coming of age tale as the wallflower struggles to overcome her doubts and insecurities. The storyline is fast-paced with readers rooting for the heroine to succeed at Dancing with the Stars and in Austin with Steve the garden guru. With a nod to America's Sweethearts, fans will enjoy the comedic yet deep look at a Wallflower in Bloom.

Harriet Klausner
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Sheri Newton on June 18, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Wallflower in Bloom by Claire Cook is a perfect example of fun chic-lit that is perfect for the summer sun in a nice vacation spot. It is also fun and sassy with the author's sense of humor, so it makes it that much more entertaining to read.

Wallflower in Bloom is an entertaining summer relaxing read. I wouldn't go so far as to say it is high literature or anything, but it is fun and breezy. The author is humorous and sassy, which is just what I enjoyed most about this novel.

The main character Deirdre often made me want to shake her for some of the choices she made, but you want to cheer her on and see her succeed nonetheless. Having this character be a Dancing with the Stars replacement "celebrity" is very unrealistic, as she wasn't a celebrity, her brother was. Fans of this show will more than likely really enjoy this book because of the focus of this in the novel. I'm not a fan, so I can't say I really enjoyed this being in the novel.

Overall, I found this novel to be entertaining and sassy, thanks to the author. I think it would make for an excellent beach read or summer read in general. I recommend it to all those needing a relaxing and funny read to pass the time this summer.

* Thank you to the publisher of Wallflower in Bloom, Touchstone, for providing me with a copy of this book for review. All opinions expressed are my own.
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4 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Holly TOP 500 REVIEWER on June 17, 2012
Format: Hardcover
One of the best parts of summer is the slew of lighter, fun reads that are published. I love nothing better than on a hot, steamy afternoon, sitting on my sun porch and diving into one of the new novels. The covers always promise so much and I have to say the cover art on this particular novel is wonderful and drew me in.

In this novel by Claire Cook, our protagonist is Deirdre Griffin. She is a woman raised in a tight knit family with lots of sibling rivalry and off-beat parents. That family is still most of her world, even as an adult. Her brother, Tag, has become a new age guru who is adored by the public and has become the family business. They all live on or near his compound and work for him in some way, particularly involved is Deirdre who is his personal assistant and gopher. Her life is dictated by him and his whims and over the years she has come to resent it. One night she has finally had her fill and, fueled by more alcohol that is wise, manages to get herself in the running for a spot on Dance with the Stars. Is this an opportunity for her to finally break away and no longer be the family wallflower or has she just put herself in a position of complete humiliation? Only by reading the book will the reader find out.

As I said at the beginning, I had high hopes for this narrative as the premise seemed off-beat and fun plus I have enjoyed other novels by this same author. Unfortunately, I was very disappointed and almost quit reading about half way in. The heroine is so whiny and unlikeable that I almost understood why the family treated her the way they did. Instead of having a character to cheer on, I ended up not liking any of the characters and found them all irritating. The first-person narrative can come across as fresh and witty but not this time.
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