THE PROMISE OF FLOWERS
Determined to control his daughters inheritances, greedy Charles Dunn spreads rumors that Violet and Rosemary are as mad as their mother. This succeeds in driving all suitors away.
Escaping demons of his own, Sam Glenning arrives in Philadelphia to start a business as a shipping broker in comp-etition to Dunn.
As Sams star rises, Dunns falls, until hes desperate to get his hands on the trust funds. Charles arranges Violets marriage to Captain Jeremiah Milesif she will not comply, he will put Rosemary in an asylum.
Sam has met Violet and was immediately attracted to her, until he learned that she is one of the mad sisters. Having learned his lesson about mental illness from his deranged ex-wife, Sam wants nothing to do with the Dunn sisters.
But Sam comes to realize that Violet is far from mad and that Jeremiah has fallen in love with Rosemary. Somehow they must all find a way to stop Charles from following through on his plans.
This stirring sequel to Sunrise gets its power from the fact that though thought-provoking, as Ms. Parr shows us how men have controlled womens lives, there is a special warmth in the relationships between the lovers and a heartfelt tenderness to the entire novel. Ms. Parr always takes the unusual path and brings us a memorable story whose rich emotional texture will touch our hearts. SENSUAL (Sep., 300 pp., $5.99)