Tag: Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening

May 09

Mister, Mister: An Idiosyncratic Lit List

Idiosyncratic Lit List 22

G’Day Bookworms,

You know what’s fun? Making lists around words, of course! I hope you were expecting me to bust out with 80s ballad “Broken Wings,” because then I won’t feel weird for titling this post in an ambiguous manner. (Mr. Mister? Anybody? Bueller?) I think it’s time we make a list of some fabulous and quirky bookish misters, don’t you?


1. Mr. Popper’s Penguins by Richard and Florence Atwater: Only the BEST CHILDREN’S BOOK EVER! Why hasn’t anybody ever sent me a live penguin just because I’m a fan, huh? Just kidding. But really. So much penguiny whimsical goodness. It’s an absolute joy. (my review)

2. Mr. Penumbra’s 24-Hour Bookstore by Robin Sloane: A book about books! And fonts! And Google! It’s great fun, kids, trust me on this one! (my review)


3. Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening by Carol Wall: There’s little I enjoy more than a tale of flowery goodness, and this book has it. Plus, it’s got unlikely friendships and conquering stereotypes and all sorts of feel good moments. It’s a really sweet memoir, guys. I promise.

Question for you, Bookworms. Do you like being called by a formal title? Mr.? Mrs.? Miss? Ms.? 

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*


Mar 06

Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening by Carol Wall

Flowers, Memoirs 6

Greetings Glorious Bookworms,

I don’t know what it’s like where you are, but it is STILL winter here. The eternal, never done snowing, frozen, messy, gray, icky winter is still holding on. That hasn’t stopped me from pining away for spring time and my garden, though. That’s part of the reason why I was super jazzed when I given the opportunity to read Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening: How I Learned the Unexpected Joy of a Green Thumb and an Open Heart by Carol Wall. *Full Disclosure: I received a copy of this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.*

mrowitaMister Owita’s Guide to Gardening is a sweet memoir in which Carol Wall tells the story of her unexpected friendship with the man she hired to tend her garden, Giles Owita.Carol had ZERO interest in gardening (heartbreaking, really), but is embarrassed by her bedraggled yard. When she sees her neighbor has hired landscaping help, she swoops in to see if he would be willing to take on another project.

Giles Owita is a Kenyan immigrant. In addition to his work as a landscaper, he holds jobs at a supermarket and a garden center. Carol, despite her best intentions, makes assumptions about Mr. Owita’s background and is mortified to learn that her assumptions were incorrect. Luckily, her sincere apologies for the occasional faux pas pave the way for them to forge a meaningful relationship.

The friendship between Carol and Giles is heartwarming. Between health problems and family complications, Carol and Giles support and encourage one another. And, of course, there are flowers. Let’s not forget about the flowers, because FLOWERS.

The only complaint I had about this book is that the conversations sounded a little too pretty… Real speech is full of “um’s” and fragments and awkward pauses. The dialogue was written in beautiful well-formed prose, but it didn’t hit me as conversational. Of course, that’s a teeny tiny complaint and it didn’t hinder my overall enjoyment of the book. If you’re withering this winter the way I am, give Mister Owita’s Guide to Gardening a try!

And while we’re here and I’m still pining, let’s look at some of my flowers. I miss them so desperately!

my garden

What about you Bookworms? What are you looking forward to come spring? 

*If you make a purchase through a link on this site, I will receive a small commission.*