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Marta McDowell: Gardening Can Be Murder

October 11 @ 12:00 PM CDT

Book cover - Gardening can be Murder: How Poisonous Poppies, Sinister Shovels, and Grim gardens Have Inspired Mystery Writers by Marta McDowell

Find "Gardening Can Be Murder" by Marta McDowell at the Library.Join us in Coralville Public Library’s Meeting Room A for Marta McDowell, author of Gardening Can Be Murder.

With their deadly plants, razor-sharp shears, shady corners, and ready-made burial sites, gardens make an ideal scene for the perfect murder. But the outsize influence that gardens and gardening have had on the mystery genre has been underappreciated. Now, Marta McDowell, a writer and gardener with a near-encyclopedic knowledge of the genre, illuminates the many ways in which our greatest mystery writers, from Edgar Allen Poe to authors on today’s bestseller lists, have found inspiration in the sinister side of gardens.

From the cozy to the hardboiled, the literary to the pulp, and the classic to the contemporary, Gardening Can Be Murder is the first book to explore the mystery genre’s many surprising horticultural connections. Meet plant-obsessed detectives and spooky groundskeeper suspects, witness toxic teas served in foul play, and tour the gardens—both real and imagined—that have been the settings for fiction’s ghastliest misdeeds. A New York Times bestselling author herself, McDowell also introduces us to some of today’s top writers who consider gardening integral to their craft, assuring that horticultural themes will remain a staple of the genre for countless twisting plots to come.

This event is part of the Iowa City Book Festival, October 8-15, 2023.


October 11
12:00 PM CDT
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Meeting Room A
1401 5th Street
Coralville, IA 52241 United States
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