Review: The Gardener and the Marine by RJ Scott (Ellery Mountain #9)


Note: An advanced reader copy (ARC) was provided by the author.

RJ Scott's Ellery Mountain series is one of my favorites from her list of published work, so when I learned that she had a new book to add to the collection, I was excited to get my greedy hands on it. Originally released as a serialized story in Scott's newsletter, The Gardener and the Marine is the ninth book in the Ellery Mountain series. This features Toby Geffner and Harrison Miller, the former being a horticulturist and the latter a military veteran. Their paths cross at Ellery Mountain Veterans Center. Toby is in charge of a horticulture-based therapy project that would have residents of the Center helping create a garden. Harrison is one of the participants, and while he's more comfortable being alone with his support dog, Barney, he slowly becomes more at ease with Toby. But with his traumatic brain injury, can this Marine envision any future with his gardener?

Toby and Harrison stole my heart! I loved getting to know these two men, and while their story wasn't necessarily the easiest of journeys towards a happily-ever-after, having that front-row seat to their actual journey and seeing how much growth both of them experienced felt like such a privilege. I seriously liked the idea of the creation of a garden being therapeutic. I'd never heard of therapeutic horticulture, and after reading this book, I did a bit of research. I know of quite a few people in my life who totally got into gardening during this pandemic, and my father, brother, and younger sister love to garden, and they've all told me about how beneficial its been to them. All their testimonials alongside Toby and Harrison's story have inspired me to do a bit of digging, literally and figuratively. The Gardener and the Marine proved to be a sweet romance AND gardening inspiration (something that I didn't even know I actually needed!), which is why it gets 4.5 stars. I cannot wait for stories more from RJ Scott's Ellery Mountain series.

Release Date: 20 August 2021

Date Read: 18 August 2021

Learn more about RJ Scott.

Purchase The Gardener and the Marine on Amazon | Apple Books | B&N | Kobo.

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