Cover image for The gardens of Covington : a novel
The gardens of Covington : a novel
Medlicott, Joan A. (Joan Avna)
First edition.
Publication Information:
New York : Thomas Dunne Books, 2001.
Physical Description:
326 pages ; 25 cm
Geographic Term:
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Central Closed Stacks
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf
X Adult Fiction Open Shelf

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The Gardens of Covington joyously celebrates women and friendships, families and love, laughing through the tears, thinking with the head and the heart. The ladies, so real and inspiring, will make you wish they were your neighbors.

If this is your first visit to the small town of Covington, you'll feel comfortably at home in the white farmhouse with the yellow shutters on Cove road that once again teems with warmth and fresh hope for today and tomorrow. If it's your second visit, you'll be thrilled to sit on the front porch once again and catch up with old friends and neighbors.

Hannah, cool-headed and calm, battles to save their beloved hills from the rapacious development that has already ruined Loring Valley, only five minutes form Cove Road. Amelia, giddy with a newfound love, abandons the ladies and her photography to please her dashing new beau. And Grace is driven to prove she has an eye for business when she and her steady companion, Bob Richardson, open the Cottage Tearoom.

New friends and neighbors are introduced. Eccentric Lurina Masterson, an eighty-one-year-old bride, brings tears of joy to all when, wearing her childhood dream of white satin, she married "Old Man," who is ninety-one. And George Maxwell, the ladies' closest neighbor, provides an inspired solution to preserving Covington's lush hills and valleys.

Joan Medlicott writes lovingly about the complexity and tenderness of women. she writes with honesty about relationships, about love and passion, about commitment and friendship, as well as about the intricate bonds between parents and their children.

As you join the ladies of Covington through their highs and their lows, their joys and their sorrows, you will not want the book to end, nor will you wish to leave their world behind you.

Author Notes

Joan Medlicott lives in Barnardsville, North Carolina.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

In this sequel to The Ladies of Covington Send Their Love (2000), Medlicott returns to the tiny mountain community for the next episode in the lives of Grace, Hannah, and Amelia. Living together in a renovated farmhouse, these three women share their dreams and disappointments, offering each other encouragement, advice, and support. Grace, an expert cook, struggles to realize her dream of opening a teahouse. Hannah, whose passion is gardening, is training a friend to run her greenhouse. And Amelia, a talented artist and photographer, falls in love with an enigmatic man who refuses to discuss his past. Grace, Hannah, and Amelia have lived in Covington for just over a year, but are still working to be accepted by their neighbors. When developers from Georgia threaten to transform Covington's lush terrain into a series of condominiums and strip malls, the three friends must find a way to protect their peaceful rural community. Both fans of Medlicott and readers new to Covington will enjoy this charming story of small-town life. --Bonnie Johnston

Publisher's Weekly Review

The ladies are at it again in this sequel to Medlicott's successful debut, The Ladies of Covington Send Their Love. Amelia, Grace and Hannah are now happily ensconced in their beautiful old farmhouse in the foothills of North Carolina, but when developers threaten to turn their Eden into a condo haven, Hannah at least is up in arms. Grace and her lover, Bob, are busy preparing to open a tearoom and Amelia's photography talent continues to bloom. She falls for a man she meets in a fender-bender, but the new romance isn't all sweetness and light; she hides her suspicions about the gent, whom both her roommates dislike. Grace loves the tearoom and her relationship with Bob, but worries about what to tell him regarding his request to build a cabin on the women's property, even as she tries to keep the nuptials of Bob's widowed son, Russell, on track. Hannah encounters resistance as well as support in her crusade against the developers; she is reminded that she is a newcomer and a Yankee, and that some interpret her assistance as interloping. The woomen befriend their charming but frail neighbor, Ms. Maxwell, only shortly before her death but she is to play an important role in the drama. Though the theme of friendship among older women is appealing, the prose is occasionally flat, and the characters seem present merely to tout the author's causes (feminism, diversity, environmentalism), with very little life of their own. Despite these drawbacks, Medlicott still knows how to charm her target audience. Agent, Nancy Coffey. (May) Forecast: Medlicott's many fans undoubtedly will lap this book up, and a regional author tour will help. Newcomers might be better off with the paperback of its predecessor. (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

Library Journal Review

The "ladies" return in Medlicott's gracefully written sequel to The Ladies of Covington Send Their Love (LJ 3/1/00). The three seventyish friends, who live together in a North Carolina farmhouse, are busy growing and learning through life's experiences. Stalwart Hannah, who is still involved in her plant nursery business, rallies the town's forces to combat a ruthless developer and save the area's natural beauty. Sweet, soft Grace and beau Bob open a tearoom together (Bob's son Russell and grandson Tyler are major players in this story). And dreamy Amelia falls hard for a scoundrel who is sure to hurt her. Two weddings figure prominently Russell remarries after much family conflict, and an elderly friend (and virgin bride) marries an old codger. The story ends happily with disputed land being given as a gift (and saved from development) for transformation into the Gardens of Covington. Highly recommended. Carol J. Bissett, New Braunfels P.L., TX (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.