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Garden of Shadows (Dollanganger, #5)
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Garden of Shadows (Dollanganger #5)

3.83 of 5 stars 3.83  ·  rating details  ·  18,582 ratings  ·  368 reviews
A tale of dreadful secrets and dark passions before Flowers in the Attic began. This is where the wicked curse of the Dollangenger family begins.
Hardcover, 376 pages
Published December 1st 1990 by Turtleback Books (first published 1987)
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Neva
Ever wonder why Cathy's grandmother was such a bitch? No? Well, I did. Apparently, so did VC Andrews. It turns out, it was because she was so damn tall, wore her hair pulled back sternly, and was so serious! Oh, and because her husband cheated on her with his stepmother. And then he killed his father, and impregnated his stepmother who gets PUT IN THE ATTIC. Geez, they just stuck everyone up there. So does that make him his...stepsister's father? Well, anyway, the stepmother has a daughter who i...more
Christina
The first and most important of the Andrews series. Felt oh so wrong while reading it and yet no girl of my generation could put them down! I enjoyed every page of every book.
Cecilia Solis-sublette
It has been a long while since I finished a book of this length in less than 2 nights. I remember, now, the appeal of V.C. Andrews. Yes, her plots are a little unrealistic and yes, her characters can seem a little falt but both are just fun reading for the beach or whatever. This novel is like reading a good Lifetime movie. Back to the novel itself. _Garden of Shadows_ is fun in its own right but even more fun if you are familiar with _Flowers in the Attic_ as GOS is its prequel and everyone lov...more
sj
(Full Review and more on Trashy Tuesday here: http://wp.me/p1Zgyz-8o )

At last, we've arrived at the final installment in the Dollanganger series! I was talking to Becoming Clicheover chat the other day about how thrilled I was to be able to stop reading VC Andrews, and she said something to the effect of "Oh, but Heaven was such a good book! And what about My Sweet Audrina?" I guess this means I will be revisiting this author at some point in the future, but hopefully not any time soon. There's...more
Savina M.

I read the first four books of the Dollanganger saga two years ago, and since then I've never felt quite emotionally prepared for the fifth book. I finally plucked up the courage to read Garden of Shadows, and it is safe to say V.C. Andrews has not let me down.
Fortunately, I didn't cry reading this book. I remember bawling my eyes out at every one of the first four books. This book, if possible, is even darker than Flowers in the Attic and it left me in a trance whenever I paused to do something...more
Scott
Takes you back to the beginning and makes the Dollanganger story even MORE twisted...
Lori
"Garden of Shadows", the prequel to "Flowers in the Attic", goes back to unchartered territory and succeeds in giving a new twist to the Dollangager saga.
"Garden" is the story of Olivia (the Grandmother) - - a few pages about her upbringing by her loving father, before we are taken right into her "arranged" marriage to Malcolm Foxworth, a good looking young man whom she feels love for, but that quickly turns on her wedding night when she is raped. Olivia comes to find out what a horrible, cruel...more
Belle
I was posting the recap here but I have reached my character limit, whoops! So if you want to read my (still in progress) recap, click the links:
Part 1
Part 2
Part 3
Part 4
Part 5
Part 6 to come!
Jennifer
I think it's hard to spend 4 books hating on a character and then going back in the 5th and trying to work up some boo-hoo for the character you have been hating on for so long. Plus I wasn't 13 when I read this one so it made it alot harder to read.

I feel like someone should have stepped in at some point and nudged the ghost-writers for V.C. Andrews and told them that humping relatives is actually kinda looked down upon. Of course the formula works - The estate of V.C. Andrews is still pumping...more
Angela
Jun 15, 2010 Angela rated it 4 of 5 stars
Shelves: ya
Garden of Shadows by V.C. Andrews is the final installment of the Dollanganger Family Series. A prequel to Flowers in the Attic, it explains the story behind the grandmother’s harsh ways. Like Flowers in the Attic, Garden of Shadows presents a series of horrifying events that make you want to cringe, yet entices you to read more. We learn how the grandmother, Olivia, met Malcolm and discover their marriage was more of a business arrangement than act of love and commitment. Malcolm makes it known...more
Michelle Arrow
Note: If you hated Olivia, Corrine's mother and Cathy's grandmother as much as I did in the first and previous novels of the series, then maybe this prequel will give you a little more insight on her aspect and will help you change your mind on this poor woman who went through so much hatred and unfairness in her life.

I was ready to hate this book; I never liked Olivia and you think I want to read her POV when she was a "bratty young lady?" No thanks. But having this be the last of V.C. Andr...more
Alma
Sep 28, 2007 Alma rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Anyone
OMG. Makes complete sence!
Christine
And it's done. I'm finally free of V.C. Andrews, hooray! I felt wrong leaving the series off without having read the last book, the prequel to Flowers in the Attic.

Boy is this a doozy, and it's not a very good one, either. We have more incest, really perverted old men, megalomaniac fathers, slutty bubbleheaded women, and the towering monstrosity that is Olivia Foxworth, the steely grandmamma that is the main antagonist of most of the series.

Oh Olivia. I don't know how V.C. wanted me to feel sym...more
Kolleen
Well, I have to admit I wasn't too excited about reading this book. It is a prequel, and usually those aren't too great, and by this point I was a little bit over the Dollangangers. But, upon finishing this book I came to three conclusions:

1.) This was one of the better books in the series.

2.) Although this is a prequel, and some suggest to read it first, please read it last. It has a shocker of an ending that makes the whole series worth it.

3.) And lastly, you have to read it to finally underst...more
Brittni
If There Be Thorns gives us a peek into the life of Malcolm, the haunting figure who's omnipresent throughout the Dollanganger books but only seen once, and then from afar. Bart Jr. reads Malcolm's old diary and through that, we learn about Malcolm's womanizing ways, and a bit more of the family history.

Why the existence of this book, then, after all has been said and done already? The purpose is to experience through Olivia's eyes all that's happened from her marriage to the night she first loc...more
Iolanda
This was the most twisted out of all of the books in the series! It follows the beginning of Flowers, coming from the Grandmother: Olivia's perspective.

The book that explains why the grandmother was such an evil bitch, why did she resent the four Dollanganger children so much, why did Corrine seem like a huge chip on her shoulder! This is a spoiler free review but let me tell you, there's a twist. A twist I didn't see coming and when it happened, I was so bewildered. I couldn't stop reading aft...more
Connie J.estrada
AS MUCH AS I LIKED THIS BOOK, I FELT IT WAS VERY LONG WINDED. IT SEEMED TO TAKE FOREVER FOR THE BOOK TO GET FROM ONE END TO THE OTHER. LIKE "EVERYTHING" WAS ADDED. ALTHOUGH IT WAS NOT JUSTIFIED, I COULD UNDERSTAND HOW BITTER, AND ANGRY OLIVIA BECAME. WHEN SHE FIRST MARRIED MELCOME, HE WAS NOT IN LOVE WITH HER, HE NEVER LOVED HER. HIS INFATUATION OF HIS MOTHERS SWAN ROOM WAS SO BIZZAR. THEN THE WAY HE MADE SEXUAL ADVANCES TWARDS HIS FATHERS WIFE, AND HOW OLIVA SAW EVERYTHING HE DID. SHE JUST SWAL...more
Eveline Chao
Pervy fun for a middle-school aged girl.
Mayra
I found the book somewhat more heart-wrenching than the others, but I seriously did not figure out who Olivia was until the middle, and then it all started to come together. Although some details are inconsistent with those from the other books, it was really interesting to see how it all began. Even though I think Alicia was supposed to annoy you a little, I kind of liked her, and I found her a really pitiful character too, especially when Garland died and she was at the mercy of Malcolm.
I did...more
Slayermel
Sep 18, 2009 Slayermel rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: anyone who enjoyed Flowers in the Attic
This story is about Olivia Winfield who most know as the evil Grandmother from "Flowers in the Attic". This is the fifth instalment of the Dollanganger series, but it's really the prequel to flowers in the attic. This is where the whole twisted tale began.

Olivia was a very tall, plain women who did not attract the attention of men. She was quite thrilled and taken with Malcolm Foxworth when he showed an interest in her. Little did she know that he scorns all beautiful women because his beautiful...more
Erin ~ (It's October, time for creepy books)
Garden of Shadows was the last novel written in the Dollanganger series, although it is actually the prequel to anything that came after. The book tells the story of Olivia Foxworth, the grandmother that would come to haunt the children in Flowers in the attic.

It tells the story of a young woman who comes to live at Foxworth Hall, and in her hands she holds the dreams for a bright future. One filled with love, romance, children, parties, and overall bliss. What she doesn’t know is that she has m...more
Gaby
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Amanda
When I began reading this series, I enjoyed the first two books, but by the third and fourth, I began to question why I was still reading them. I didn't have very high hopes when I began to read "Garden of Shadows," but this book restored my faith in the series and I don't feel the series would have been adequately completed without this book. "GoS" takes us back to the very beginning, giving a little insight as to why Olivia is such a religious bitch and why she treats her grandchildren the way...more
Kim
Good stuff! An interesting look back into the crazy that bred the Dollanganger psychodrama. It was frighteningly easy to sympathise with Olivia during most of the book, especially in the beginning. As a youngster she was actually much more relatable and likeable than Corinne and Cathy as an adult; bookish, steadfast, insecure and intelligent. It's sad what happened to her when she married Malcolm. She did not deserve any of that.

As usual we have the ghostly spectre of the religious bigot hanging...more
Sezin Koehler
What VC Andrews has done with this book is quite brilliant: She's gone to the beginning of the Flowers in the Attic saga and told how things started from the perspective of the grandmother we come to hate in the other books. I feel a bit torn up inside because once seeing things from her perspective -- a far more measured and understandable one that what we've seen in the other installments of this tragedy -- it puts an entirely new spin on this horrific tale.

To get the maximum effect of eerie...more
Lynnette
Absolutely detest this book!!! I was really getting into VC Andrews and the way she really makes you care about her characters. However, all i could feel was pity, shame, sadness, and despair for the main character and her "family". Every time this woman and her family seemed to have a turn of good fortune or any happy moment, then a huge storm of ugliness would come explode them into the misery of their existence. My gosh. It was terrible. I couldn't put it down and stop reading because I kept...more
Delicious Strawberry
After reading the rest of the Dollanganger series, I was naturally eager to start this book. It is stunning how a woman that you end up feeling sorry for turns into such a horrible person in FitA. Yes, Olivia went through a bad transformation, but here you see who the REAL villain is.

Tempting hints of Malcolm and Olivia's turbulent relationship with one another and their children and grandchildren were hinted at in previous books, but here, from Olivia's own viewpoint, we see why she has suffere...more
Leah
I am actually sad that I have finished the Dollanganger series. All 5 books captivated me and sucked me in. Garden of Shadows was great as a prequel and left me with all my questions answered. Finally, we are able to understand what makes these characters who they are. I would recommend Flowers in the attic and the rest of the Dollanganger series to anyone who likes Fiction with a touch of drama, tradegy, and controversy. This series was my first of V.C. Andrew's books and I will defintely be pi...more
Jen Thompson
I'm not going to say that Olivia Foxworth didn't have it bad, but nothing NOTHING that happened to her, in my opinion, is as bad as what she did to those children! And to think she knew, knew what would happen them; being up in that attic for so long. After all, she did watch Alicia Foxworth go nearly mad from being locked away in that room/attic for almost a year.
This book was probably the most shocking out of all of them, because after reading the first four you are always led to believe that...more
Jen
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
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Books published under the following names - Virginia Andrews, V. Andrews, Virginia C. Andrews & V.C. Endrius. Books since her death ghost written by Andrew Neiderman, but still attributed to the V.C. Andrews name

Virginia Cleo Andrews (born Cleo Virginia Andrews) was born June 6, 1923 in Portsmouth, Virginia. The youngest child and the only daughter of William Henry Andrews, a career navy man w...more
More about V.C. Andrews...
Flowers in the Attic (Dollanganger, #1) Petals on the Wind (Dollanganger, #2) If There Be Thorns (Dollanganger, #3) Seeds of Yesterday (Dollanganger, #4) My Sweet Audrina

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“My heart felt like a cold ember. Last night it flamed with hope. Today it was coated with ashes.” 4 likes
“El dia quedo teñido de negrura y, a partir de entonces, todos mis dias han sido negros” 0 likes
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