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Sunflowers in February

3.67  ·  Rating details ·  425 ratings  ·  136 reviews
Lily wakes up one crisp Sunday morning on the side of the road. She has no idea how she got there. It is all very peaceful. and very beautiful. It is only when the police car, and then the ambulance arrive, and she sees her own body, that she realises that she is in fact... dead. But what is she supposed do now? Lily has no option but to follow her body and see her family ...more
Paperback, 384 pages
Published February 8th 2018 by Hot Key Books
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Average rating 3.67  · 
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Feb 11, 2020 rated it really liked it
Having being killed in a hit and run, 15 year old Lily Richardson isn't ready to move on. When the opportunity to live in her twin Ben's body arises the teenager jumps at the chance.

This was a fun and heartwarming tale of loss of a young adult and the impact on family and friends, whilst the gender swap certainly adds to a more comedic tone.
Especially as Lily is aghast to discover how she'd need to now go to the toilet!

The author perfectly captures the teen voice and the sense of frustration a l
Ellie (faerieontheshelf)
↠ 2.5 stars

I received this book from the publisher in exchange for an honest review.

I really wanted to like this, goddamnit. It’s YA from the UK and it has a gorgeous cover to boot – the blue aspects are foiled in real-life and it’s truly lovely. However, I expected something along the lines of I’ll Give You The Sun (a truly great book) in terms of character development and dynamics and in the end, my hopes raised the bar too high and Sunflowers in February fell flat on its face.

The idea behind
Olivia-Savannah  Roach
Apr 16, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When I was approached to read this one for review, I loved the cover and the title. I have to admit though, I was slightly sceptical about the content of the book and how well it would handle the topic of grief and loss. I thought it was going to be comparable to The Sky is Everywhere by Jandy Nelson. But I needn’t have feared at all because this ended up being the best YA contemporary that I’ve read in a very long time. I enjoyed reading it so much!

I want to start by discussing the theme of the
Jan 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing

I love the silky front cover of a sunflower as I love growing sunflowers, everyone loves sunflowers. I couldn't put this book down. I'm still in a daze that Sunflowers In February is Phyllida Shrimpton's first novel. I loved this wonderful fresh different story and all the characters seemed so real life. What I did find is that this story was rather a bit tearful. Lily Richardson has been killed by a driver in a hit and run. From the road side she is looking down on her body. With Lily being dea
Tan Markovic
Feb 01, 2018 rated it it was ok
When Lily ends up at the side of a road with police cars coming towards her, she doesn’t quite understand why she is there. She remembers taking a different route home because she didn’t have enough money for the bus but why is she here and nobody is acknowledging her? Turns out, Lily is dead and she is in limbo - somewhere between life and death.

As soon as I read the synopsis for this book I couldn’t request it quickly enough. Oh man….i really thought I was gonna love this. I feel incredibly l
May 14, 2018 rated it did not like it
This was the worst book I've read in a really long time. I wanted to write a rant review about it but I just forced myself to finish this book and that somehow sucked all the energy out of me. I'm just going to sum up why I didn’t like this book because I just can't find the strength to go in depth about it.

(It's basically about a girl, Lily, who died and manages to come back to life by taking over her twin brother's body.)

1. I really disliked Lily so much. She was selfish and had no respect for
Nav (she/her) 🌧
I came across Sunflowers in February whilst browsing the library website. YA contemporary is one of my favourite and most read genres so I'm always looking to discover more books in this genre. I was also intrigued by the cover and it had me wondering what this book could be about.

One day a young teenage girl called Lily wakes up at the side of the road with no memory of how she got there. As a police car arrives she realises that she is in fact dead. Lily is left with no choice but to follo
Feb 16, 2018 rated it it was ok
I wanted so badly to enjoy this book! At the start it seemed interesting and different with the deceased Lily being able to enter her twin brother Bens body but then it went downhill quickly! I found Lily to be selfish and whiny! The book was far longer than it needed to be with 200 pages or more centred around Lily being in Ben’s body and not a lot else. I also found the ending of the book unrealistic in Lily forgiving the perpetrator of her death. I don’t often rate a book this low and I am sa ...more
Joséphine (Word Revel)
February 14, 2018

My full book review is up here on Word Revel.


November 22, 2017

Initial thoughts: Wow. This book was a rollercoaster! Death is never an easy topic to face, and I have to be honest, I spent a good part of Sunflowers in February suppressing my tears, so I could continue reading. I expect for some readers, it will be triggering to read. I felt that too but pushed through and was rewarded with hope and the reminder to not only be sad for the death of dearly departed but to ce
Jan 13, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: netgallery, ya
I enjoy a YA book that has depth, that gives real feeling about a topic many people have experienced, in this case death but this book really lacked that for me. The first third of the book I did enjoy, it was interesting and thoughtful but it went off on a strange unrealistic tangent which I really didn’t enjoy.

In reality, saying goodbye to someone is the hardest thing to go through, but the book didn’t seem it was about that. The book was too freaky Friday for my likely, lacking connection wit
Clair Sharpe
Thank you to Hot Key Press and the author for sending me a copy of this.
The cover drew me in (its so pretty with the foil detail) and it seems I have a thing for yellow books in March!
One cold February morning, Lily wakes up at the side of the road with no memory of how she got there. Its not until the police turn up that she realises she is actually dead - her broken body lies just a few feet away, the obvious victim of a hit and run. Having no idea why she can still think, why no one can see
Jan 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: 2018, netgalley, y-a
Oh how i sobbed, then laughed, the sobbed some more... what a heartbreaking ye twonderful read.
I was drawn to this book by cover and title combined, curious enough to see what it could be about. It's YA which whilst i don't read lots i do enjoy the odd one here and there. and more often than not, enjoy them so i wasn't put off at all..
The story in a nutshell, Lily age 15 wakes up on the side of the road and realises she is dead, hit and run. it follows the grief of her family including importan
Meggy - Chocolate'n'Waffles
Note that the star ratings have disappeared from my blog and I am only adding them here from habit.

Sunflowers in February. What a gorgeous and sunny title. I instantly fell in love with it. The bright cover brightened up the rainy day this book was delivered to my house, and serendipity made me choose it on another rainy day a few weeks later.

With only snippets of recollection of the blurb, I started wandering in this sunflower field with no shield. Was I ready for this emotional read? The mome

Katie Greenwood
Apr 02, 2018 rated it really liked it
I got so excited when I saw an e-mail for this book in my inbox. It sounded fantastic and described as being ideal for fans of John Green and the Lovely Bones. Admittedly, I've never read the Lovely Bones book but the film was incredible... I will read it eventually.

Lily wakes up and the first thing she sees is her own body at the side of the road. At first she has no idea whats going on but when the police and ambulance arrive she quickly realises she's dead. But whats she meant to do now? Sure
Christina Reid
Dec 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley-arcs
Couldn't put this down! 3.5stars

The bluish light to the day gives away the early hour, and I hug my knees to my chest as if I should be cold. Sitting on the grass verge of a narrow country lane I become aware, with the gradual creeping light of dawn, that I must have been here for some time.
It comes to me slowly, in the same way that I search for recent dreams when I first wake. I can’t remember . . . The shrill call of a wild bird and the urgent flapping of its wings shatters the stil
Feb 09, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ya, contemporary
First and foremost thank you to readers first for supplying me a copy of this book, it truly looks better in the flesh.

This is a UK YA debut novel by Phyllida Shrimpton and very reminiscent of the lovely bones by Alice Sebold. When I read the synopsis of this book I knew that I was going to have to read it. The exploration of life after death fascinates me, are there spirits? is there really life after death? This book had depth to it and has some very important messages, it covers a lot on grie
Kayleigh Cyphus
Dec 17, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Sunflowers in February is a simply stunning debut; it tackles a topic not often found in YA in this capacity and is written from a unique perspective that's surprisingly realistic. Lily is such an engaging character that you can't help but want to keep turning each and every page to find out what's going to happen next.

A key aspect of Sunflowers in February is the idea of moving past grief, and how, whilst this "missing piece really does ruin the overall picture of the puzzle", life moves on and
May 06, 2018 rated it liked it
It must be karma because while I was finishing this novel, something very sad happened to someone at work. One day he’s there, the next he’s not.. gone in the blink of an eye, much like Lily in this novel.

I’m not one to believe in an afterlife or staying around on earth (although I did really love the movie Ghost) but I actually found some comfort in the story as I imagined my colleague following everyone around and still being near. Sometimes you just find it in unexpected places when you need
Elite Group
Feb 09, 2018 rated it liked it
An exploration of life after death.

‘Lily wakes up one crisp Sunday morning on the side of the road’ and soon realises she is dead. She has been the victim of a hit and run accident.

This is how the story begins and we soon learn that Lily is fifteen years old and has a twin brother, Ben. As she floats above the world she has left behind, she watches as the news of her violent death is given to her family and close friends. After her funeral she realises she is not ready or prepared, to ‘move on’.
May 05, 2018 added it
Reading about bereavement is hard, I NEVER want to go through that.

Sunflowers in February is about 15 year old Lilly who wakes up on the side of the road and realises she died in a car accident. But Lilly is not ready to go into the afterlife yet. She has some unfinished business. The big question is who was behind the hit and run that left her dead?

What drew me into this book is the warm cover and the title it immediate diately makes you think this will be a happy book but boy was I wrong!

I st
Jan 27, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2018
The premise for this book is unlike anything I have read before so I was very interested to read it. I like when young adult books deal with deep meaningful topics as I feel it is a great, entertaining way to inform young people about the topic. I did enjoy this book and I felt like it dealt with the topic of death and grief very well by showing how much impact one death can have on a large number of people.

Unfortunately for me the book fell flat as I felt the main character was too juvenile fo
Feb 20, 2018 rated it liked it
This was a weird book, but I enjoyed it in most parts. Lily was a realistic teenager, cut from life too soon and desperate to just live one more day. So though she treats Ben terribly and is really selfish and immature, you can really see why. so even though her decisions annoyed me sometimes, I understood them completely.

I was really sad, especially in the first part where Lily is just following her family around. Though I felt it lost it's feeling after Lily gets to live again inside Ben's bo
Karen Barber
Feb 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: netgalley
For a debut novel, this was an intriguing idea.
We first meet our main character, Lily, at the start of the novel when she wakes up at the side of the road with no idea what she's doing there. Then she discovers her body lying in a ditch and realises she is dead.
Our story focuses on Lily's post-death experiences. She learns some shocking news about the identity of her killer, and has to watch her friends and family try to adjust to life without her. There are some black comic scenes where she att
Jan 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
When Lily wakes up one day and realises she has been hit by a car and died, she must figure out how to contact the people she knows in order to tell them that she hasn't moved on. She figures that the best way to do this is through her twin brother, Ben. But when Ben and Lily do finally get in contact, not everything goes as smoothly as it was meant to.

I have very mixed feelings about this book. I loved the storyline, and the question of life after death, but I found Lily to be incredibly annoyi
Apr 02, 2018 rated it liked it
3.5* An interesting take on an afterlife story, with some unique ideas within. I too found the protagonist a little whinny at times, but then again I probably would be too if I had died at 15! There were some really nice parts where I could really feel the emotions portrayed and I really liked the ending.
Rosanna Threakall
Mar 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
A really unique concept with real and honest characters. A little gem.
Jennifer Holik
Feb 29, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Get the tissues ready, this one will make you cry! I really debated about giving this one 4 or 5 stars but this time I decided to round up, regardless of some of the issues. Just because the book hit me that hard.

Don't get me wrong, there are negatives with this book. For one thing, it could have done with some better editing. There were a number of glaring grammatical mistakes and at least once the entirely wrong character is named! There is a scene where a few of the kids are being chauffeure
Feb 29, 2020 rated it really liked it
❗️Minor spoiler alert.❗️
You know how the ending of a book can make you change your mind about the rating you’re going to give to that certain book after finishing reading it?! Well, this is the case. For 95% of the book, I thought that I would rate this book with 3 stars. But the last 5 percent... changed my mind. 4 stars for this book!
It was not the best book, but not the worst either. It’s a book about a girl who dies and somehow can not find her way after death. So... she takes over her twin
Feb 19, 2020 rated it did not like it
DNF :( I really wanted to like this book. With a title like this, and a protagonist named Lily, I thought I'd be enamoured by the story, by her. Unfortunately, a few chapters in, and disappointment crept in, swearing to never leave. I tried, I really did. Halfway through, my experience did not get better, unfortunately. I wish I could connect to at least one character, or the storyline. Nothing. And this does not make me happy.
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Phyllida Shrimpton is a full-time mother of a teenage daughter and currently lives in Essex with her husband, badly behaved, small Jack Russell and a rescue Newfoundland called Nina.

She achieved a Post Graduate Degree in Human Resource Management, but soon jumped ships to work with teenagers, including students with Asperger's syndrome on an Essex based agricultural college farm before eventually

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