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Flowers in the Attic

May 17, 2011

I read this book by Virginia Andrews recently. It’s a shocking story based on truth with love, violence, humour and hope.

Worth a read definately.

I have the first style, but the other two pictures are interesting when you know the story. Beautiful? Hover over images to see sources.

Along with the shocking storyline (not giving anything away), there is an underlying minimalist theme.

The children are kept indoors with as many physical, consumerist items as they could possibly want. But all they want is love, and the chance to run and play outdoors.

Something we should all keep in mind.

There was also a page or three that really inspired me at the time of reading. I’d like to share some of the prose with you now.

(pages 180-180, first two pages of ‘The Christmas Party’, also page 189)

Her long formal gown had a skirt of flowing green chiffon; the bodice was of a deeper green velvet, cut low to show off a lot of cleavage. Underneath the streaming panels of lighter green chiffon were shoestring straps that glittered. Diamond-and-emerald earings dangled low and sparking. Her scent reminded me of a musky, perfumed garden on a moonlit night somewhere in the Orient…

And when she moved, the panels of chiffon floated as wings, leading us out of our sequestered dim place for the first time…


And then:

Far below us was a mammoth room brilliantly lit with candles fitted in the five tiers of three gigantic crystal and gold chandeliers suspended from a ceiling so high above, we couldn’t see it. I never saw so many candles burning all at once! The scent of them, the way flickering lights glowed and caught in the sparkling prisms, to scatter and defract beams of iridescence from all the jewellery the woman wore, made it a scene from a dream…

… a giant crystal fountain sprayed pale amber fluid into a silver receiving bowl. Many men and women came to hold stemmed goblets and catch the sparkling liquid. There were two other punchbowls of silver, with small matching cups – both bowls large enough for a child to bathe in. It was beautiful, glamorous, exciting, exhilarating… and so good to know that happy living was still going on outside our locked door…

… The floor where couokes danced was layed out in mosaic patterns, and was waxed so it gleamed like reflecting glass. Huge gold framed mirrors were on the walls, reflecting back the dancers so you could hardly tell the images from the reality…

Such beautiful descriptions, when you allow yourself to truly imagine. I expect Ms Andrews adored writing this part of the book, so rich and beautiful in stark contrast with most of the storyline.

Do these snippets inspire you? Do they remind you of the things you love? Or encourage you to write or read? Or sew?

I’ll just leave you with this one. Makes me want to set up my sewing machine… so happy this stuff is back in fashion again! Gives me an excuse to like it! (the quote goes on and becomes more beautiful but would give away too much, you’ll have to read it yourself!)

It was a lovely gown I wore, white, with full long sleeves that ruffled at the wrists, and was beaded through with blue satin ribbon, and everything was lace-edged, with smocking across the front and back of the bodice, and dainty pink roses with a tracery of delicately embroidered green leaves. It was one lovely nightgown, exquisitely made, and it made me feel beautiful and exquisite just to have it on.

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