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  • Writer's picturePatti Callahan Henry

B&N Most Anticipated Books of May 2023

Our Most Anticipated Books of May 2023

By Brittany Bunzey April 26, 2023 at 1:32 am

The summer months are almost here, which means it’s time to build those TBR piles. If you’re trying to prepare your reading list for vacations, lazy weekends, or afternoons inside trying to beat the heat, we recommend starting with our most anticipated books coming this May!

By Patti Callahan Henry In Stock Online

This is a moving ode to sisterhood, storytelling, and hope involving two young girls after they’ve relocated during World War II. To fill their days, Hazel spins a fairy tale for her sister. Not long after, Flora disappears, and Hazel carries that guilt into adulthood… until she receives a novel at her bookshop filled with the tales she shared only with her sister. As hope blooms and mysteries deepen, The Secret Book of Flora Lea is certain to reawaken the magic of storytelling within every reader.



Twenty years after WWII, a woman's life is upended when she discovers a mysterious book set in the imaginary world she created for her sister after being evacuated from war-torn London. Could this book be the key that helps her solve her sister's disappearance? This moving novel is sure to delight fans of Once Upon a River and The Paris Library.

This Barnes & Noble Book Club Edition includes an original bonus essay exclusively for Barnes & Noble customers, and special endpapers.

When a woman discovers a rare book that has connections to her past, long-held secrets about her missing sister and their childhood spent in the English countryside during World War II are revealed.

In the war-torn London of 1939, fourteen-year-old Hazel and five-year-old Flora are evacuated to a rural village to escape the horrors of the Second World War. Living with the kind Bridie Aberdeen and her teenage son, Harry, in a charming stone cottage along the River Thames, Hazel fills their days with walks and games to distract her young sister, including one that she creates for her sister and her sister alone—a fairy tale about a magical land, a secret place they can escape to that is all their own.

But the unthinkable happens when young Flora suddenly vanishes while playing near the banks of the river. Shattered, Hazel blames herself for her sister’s disappearance, and she carries that guilt into adulthood as a private burden she feels she deserves.

Twenty years later, Hazel is in London, ready to move on from her job at a cozy rare bookstore to a career at Sotheby’s. With a charming boyfriend and her elegantly timeworn Bloomsbury flat, Hazel’s future seems determined. But her tidy life is turned upside down when she unwraps a package containing an illustrated book called Whisperwood and the River of Stars. Hazel never told a soul about the imaginary world she created just for Flora. Could this book hold the secrets to Flora’s disappearance? Could it be a sign that her beloved sister is still alive after all these years?

As Hazel embarks on a feverish quest, revisiting long-dormant relationships and bravely opening wounds from her past, her career and future hang in the balance. An astonishing twist ultimately reveals the truth in this transporting and refreshingly original novel about the bond between sisters, the complications of conflicted love, and the enduring magic of storytelling.

Join us on Tuesday, June 6 at 3 PM ET when Patti Callahan Henry discusses her new novel and our May Book Club selection, THE SECRET BOOK OF FLORA LEA. Please register on Eventbrite to attend this event at here to learn more.

1 Comment

Unknown member
Jun 08, 2023

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