This import from England is perfect for those looking for something different. A strange malady has hit the town of Little Cherrybliss. Readers are warned they’re already infected just by opening the pages. I pushed on to find out what this was all about.

Long ago the town was a place where beautiful trees and flowers were everywhere. Then a developer decided concrete was the way to go and nature became the loser. Worse yet, no one seems to care.

Leave it to young Sorrel to stumble across a solution. She’s an obedient girl who always does her best job at being good. Trouble begins when Sorrel finds a package of seeds in her backyard and decides to plant them. To say life will never be the same is an understatement. Plants begin to grow out of the heads of both her and best friend, Neena. A few gusts of wind spread the seeds and soon everyone is infected.

The first person narration is heartfelt as Sorrel becomes the most hated and sought after person in England. Tourist traffic is way up, but the citizens want a cure. Or do they? Here’s the official synopsis from Harper Collins:

Sorrel Fallowfield is so good at being good that teachers come to her when they need help remembering the school rules – and there are LOTS.

Luckily, Sorrel doesn’t have any trouble following them, until the day she discovers a faded packet of Surprising Seeds buried under a tree in her backyard.

Now she’s hearing voices, seeing things, experiencing an almost unstoppable urge to plant the Seeds in some very unusual places… and completely failing to win her school’s competition to find The Most Obedient Child of the School.

And all that’s before flowers start growing out of her head…



  1. Magical realism for sure, but there’s also a welcome focus on contemporary topics like the environment, media presence, and bullying.
  2. Made me want to go outside and plant a few trees.
  3. Friend Neena is a science obsessed researcher and looks at their ordeal like one. Her scientific write-ups soon bring meaning to hypothesizing with facts.
  4. The premise that the book we are reading is the one that came from Sorrel’s notes. It comes full circle from the initial warning to the fulfilling ending.
  5. Nice character arc for Sorrel’s nemesis, the rich and obnoxious Chrissie. She’s a classmate and a descendant of those who wrecked the town.


Because it was the first book I ever wrote, I sometimes feel like Bloom was thirty years in the making. I poured my entire life into it – from how I felt about school, my love of nature, working in offices, motherhood, and my hopes and fears for my daughter and her generation. Some of my favourite books I read as a child definitely influenced Bloom, especially The Secret Garden, James and The Giant Peach, and Harriet the Spy, with their emphasis, respectively, on nature, mysterious substances that change the world, and what it feels like to become an outcast. (For more visit Nicola’s Author Web Site)


I received and ARC for my honest review. So far I have nothing but hair on the top of my head so for that I am thankful. Comments are welcome below.

About Greg Pattridge

Climbing another mountain...always striving to reach the next peak in my life and career.
This entry was posted in Middle Grade Book Reviews and tagged , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

6 Responses to BLOOM

  1. This one has such a fun premise. Glad you enjoyed it.

  2. This sounds like a fun book and I love magical realism Thanks for sharing it.

  3. Sound like a modern day fable, too. Will have to check it out. Ironically I wrote a picture book MS years ago with a similar theme — a girl lives in a concrete city, she finds a seed and places it in her pocket and some surprising things happen — my inspiration came from a doodle drawing I picked while studying with Peter Reynolds. Am curious how the author presents it in a MG novel as magical realism. Thanks for sharing!

  4. Sounds interesting. I do like the cover! Thanks for sharing. 🙂

  5. Completely Full Bookshelf says:

    What a wonderful premise for a book! I’m already intrigued about if the Surprising Seeds are good, bad, or something else entirely. I do love when I can’t immediately see how a book will end, and I definitely can’t here! And the cover is just wonderful as well. Thanks for the excellent review!

  6. Oh, my. That cover is too beautiful. This sounds like such a fun book. I am going to have to hunt down a copy and read it . Thanks so much for telling me about it.

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