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Official Website of New York Times  Bestselling Author

patti callahan henry

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Praise for
The Secret Book
of Flora Lea 

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"At the heart of this novel is a shattering loss that irrevocably changes the lives of a cast of complex, delightful characters. Henry is a born storyteller, keeping the reader on tenterhooks as she expertly unveils the truths and lies that drive this gripping, magical tale."

Fiona Davis, New York Times bestselling author of The Magnolia Palace


“[M]agical… An enchanting tribute to the
power of storytelling."


Starred Review 

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“Patti Callahan Henry is a master of the elusive fairy tale, and nowhere is her talent on better display than in the pages of THE SECRET BOOK OF FLORA LEA, a bittersweet tale of loss, destiny, and the strings of deep love that bind us together across the years.


The terror and heartbreak of the WW2-era children’s evacuation of London collide with the dangling threads of an unsolved mystery that picks up nearly two decades later, at the dawn of the swinging sixties. This heartrending, captivating tale of family, first love, and fate will sweep you away.”

Kristin Harmel, New York Times bestselling author of The Forest of Vanishing Stars and The Book of Lost Names 

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“[A]ffecting… Henry’s offering shines most in its exploration of the ways relationships grow and adapt to time and trauma, making for a poignant meditation on the bonds of sisterhood.
This captivates.” 


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"{P}atti Callahan Henry delivers, yet again, an historically layered, dreamy tale that keeps the anglophile fires burning, on the heels of her acclaimed 2021 release, Once Upon a Wardrobe. Her descriptive detail is cinematic... A charming story that weaves fairy tale, mystery, and historical importance with a good dose of romance, The Secret Book of Flora Lea will appeal to all ages, as the author unfurls a fantastic story about ‘an invisible place right here with us.’”


"The Secret Book of Flora Lea” by Patti Callahan Henry is an enchanting work of historical fiction about two sisters impacted by Operation Pied Piper — the British relocation of more than 3 million children from urban to rural housing during World War II. Using an inventive blend of myth, fairytale, and literature, Henry spins a tender and heartening story about the lasting bonds of sisterly love and the lifetime impact of war trauma...The Secret Book of Flora Lea” crescendos into a fantastic love letter to fairytales and an ode to the healing that can come while searching for happily ever after."

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"A real page-turner! . . . For fans of Kate Morton, Belinda Alexandra, and Kristin Hannah, this is a captivating, poignant celebration of sisterhood and the magic of storytelling.

I couldn’t recommend it more." 

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“A sublime blend of historical fiction and fairy tale, much-loved author Patti Callahan Henry has created her best work in The Secret Book of Flora Lea. She again proves herself as a thoroughly gifted and lyrical novelist, swirling mystery and magic around a pair of unforgettable sisters. It’s the kind of book that begs to be read, re-read and discussed. It is a pick that is both satisfying and memorable, and I can’t wait for readers to be wholly transported.”

Shannon DeVito, Senior Director of Books, Barnes & Noble

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“In this heartfelt novel, Henry deftly examines the bonds of sisterhood while seamlessly melding the horrors of war with the comfort of fairy tales, reminding us that “telling stories is one of the greatest powers we possess.

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“Original, eloquent, riveting, memorable, The Secret Book of Flora Lea deftly showcases author Patti Callahan Henry's literary talents as a novelist with a genuine and impressive flair for the kind of narrative-driven and imaginative storytelling talents that keep the reader's rapt and compulsive page-turning attention from cover to cover. A novel that will linger in the mind and memory of the reader long after the book itself has been finished and set back upon the shelf." 


"A world war and a fairy tale collide in the British countryside in 1940 — and Patti Callahan Henry is the perfect novelist to explore how the living are forever changed. The Secret Book of Flora Lea is a treasure: moving, surprising,  and deeply evocative of an England that every day walked the tightrope between heartbreak and hope.”

  — Chris Bohjalian, #1 New York Times Bestselling Author 

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“Ultimately, it is the importance of stories and the necessity of storytelling that underpin everything in this beautiful, heartrending novel. Stories can bring us together, create an unbreakable bond between people, and reveal things we might not otherwise be able to see about ourselves, our lives, and the world we live in; stories, even though imagined, can carry the truth. It is the story Hazel created which makes its way back to her across time and space, and finally leads her to the truth.”

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"This exquisitely beautiful, poignant, and enchanting tale is an extraordinary blend of mystery, faith, and sisterly love that will utterly captivate history buffs and storytellers alike."

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"Narrator Cynthia Erivo's quiet assurance permeates this dual-timeline audio about the powerful alchemy of storytelling... 

Erivo rarely raises her voice, yet through desperate tones, she expertly conveys Hazel's search for answers to the mysteries of her missing sister and the appearance of the stories from long ago. Erivo seamlessly adopts the charming lilt of young Flora and the American accent of the woman who has unwittingly written the fanciful stories that connect Hazel's past with her present."



“Two sisters, dual time periods, a magical secret place, an abiding mystery — THE SECRET BOOK OF FLORA LEA is an enchanting story of survival against all odds. With her trademark warmth and a feather-light touch, Patti Callahan Henry weaves together events both real and imagined. Transporting, heartfelt, and atmospheric."


Christina Baker Kline, New York Times bestselling author of The Exiles


“Patti Callahan Henry has pulled off the near-impossible, she’s created a fantastical tale of myth, wartime history, and true heartache. I absolutely loved this book!”


Jamie Ford, New York Times bestselling author of The Many Daughters of Afong


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In this gorgeous ode to books and storytellers, Patti Callahan Henry shows that literature lives inside us, and can unite us despite the odds. Through war, young love, a sister’s remorse, and a mysterious land called Whisperwood, I was torn between savoring each word and tearing through the pages to learn what happened next. Pure magic!"


Janet Skeslien Charles, New York Times bestselling author of The Paris Library

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"...Enchanting, to say the least, “The Secret Book of Flora Lea” is a beautifully told testament to the inherent power of stories and books to bind lives together through otherwise insurmountable hardships and loss, and to ultimately offer the possibilities of redemption, homecoming and a renewed sense of identity and purpose — if only we find the courage and will to be the heroes our stories ask of us."

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The Secret Book of Flora Lea is a beguiling blend of hope, mystery and true familial love. It exposes the deep wounds of a family tragically separated because of war. Told in an utterly fresh way with dual timelines and a host of unforgettable characters this is a story that is both necessary and satisfying through the last page. Powerful and spellbinding!"


Sadeqa Johnson International best-selling author of The House of Eve

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"Deft, lyrical and supremely satisfying, The Secret Book of Flora Lea isn’t so much a departure for Patti Callahan Henry as it is a culmination of her gifts as a novelist. This is a book about difficult history and unsinkable hope, ordinary magic in the form of love, and how our stories can save and sustain us in the most trying moments of our lives. Callahan’s plot will keep you guessing even as her characters steal your heart. I loved it.

Paula McLain, author of The Paris Wife and When the Stars Go Dark


“A spellbinding tale of hope and perseverance, The Secret Book of Flora Lea is as enchanting and whimsical as the Whisperwood fairytale hidden within its pages. It reminds us that a happily-ever-after isn't out of reach—so long as we heed the tiny voice within, whispering that the real magic of the story may be closer than we think."


Sarah Penner, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Apothecary and The London Seance Society

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The narrative is beautifully told, replete with vivid details of the UK settings that transport the reader to the novel’s world. While it is the mystery of Flora’s disappearance that drives the plot, several other themes are woven in—forgiveness and self-forgiveness, the healing power of the natural world, the comfort of stories, and self-discovery. It all culminates in an astonishing and satisfying plot twist.”

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“Expert storytelling. This is a beautiful tale of the powers of stories and love... I fell deeply in love with Whisperwood and the characters of this lovely novel. This book is one that, upon finishing it, you close it gently, hold it close to your heart, wipe your tears, and smile before you set it down."

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Art Illustration by Yvette Gilbert

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The Secret Book of Flora Lea is another amazing, character-driven novel from Henry, who never disappoints with her books. A perfect beach read."


“Mix "The Lion, The Witch, and the Wardrobe" with a touch of "84 Charing Cross Road," a dash of "Gone Girl" and a pinch of Jane Austen, and you have best-selling novelist Patti Callahan Henry's latest romantic mystery. The author turns to England for 'The Secret Book of Flora Lea.' 


...Beyond history, 'The Secret Book of Flora Lea' is a parable about the human need for stories and how seemingly silly fairy tales can give children and adults strength, courage, and resilience."



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