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  • Writer's picturePatti Callahan Henry

Congrats! The Secret of Flora Lea is a New York Times Bestseller!

Congratulations to Patti Callahan Henry for making The New York Times Bestseller List—The Secret Book of Flora Lea

First week out of the gate at #8 (Hardcover Fiction)

May 21, 2023 View List


I keep retyping this opening sentence because I can't find all the words for my sheer giddiness and wonder that The Secret Book of Flora Lea is sitting at number eight on the NYT list. The team at @atriabooks is as stellar as it gets. And it's not just work. We have had an absolute blast with this book: the creativity, the laughter, and the absolute delight of working together. @mrsduggan16 @lindsaysagnette @dtrocker @khixson8 @lisasciambra @meganrudloff @lady_dayna YOU ARE A WONDER!!!

And none of this would have happened without YOU, the reader, and @friendsandfiction -- oh @kristywharvey @marykayandrews @rsblockmtm @kristinharmel @megwalker1225 and EVERY SINGLE ONE OF YOU who showed up at events and bought Flora Lea -- my heart is singing with gratitude. To @pthenry for being there when the news came in! I know I'll have more to say, but for now -- THANK YOU FROM THE BOTTOM OF MY HEART !!!



by Patti Callahan Henry


When an illustrated book offering potential clues arrives years after World War II, a woman in London delves into her past.

When a woman discovers a rare book that connects 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.

THE SECRET BOOK OF FLORA LEA Author: Patti Callahan Henry Release Date: May 2, 2023 Publisher/Imprint: Atria Books Pages: 368 Hardcover, e-book, audio, hardcover, paperback, and audio CD Narrator: Award-winning, Cynthia Erivo by Simon & Schuster Audio


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