The First Gardener
Denise Hildreth Jones
Tyndale, Aug 1 2011, $13.99
Tennessee Governor Gray London and his wife Mackenzie waited years for a child so they feel blessed when their now five year old daughter Maddie was born. The couple would like another child, but so far they have not had any luck. However, tragedy strikes the family when Maddie dies in a car accident partly because she failed to click it.
Both Gray and Mack are devastated and unable to move passed their grief though he has budget issues to occupy his mind while she has the guilt of driving with her daughter unbelted. The statehouse First Gardener Jeremiah Williams feels for the governor and his wife. He grows special flowers as a tribute and prays to god to help this couple mend though Mack initially rejects his flowery offer.
This is a strong inspirational family drama that pulls no punches as the happy First Family of Tennessee suddenly deals with the death of their little sunshine even while Mack is pregnant and Gray is considering whether to run for reelection or not. Though cynical in terms of honesty is not considered the best policy by politicians, The First Gardener is a fabulous look at grieving and healing as the title character shows life goes on even after a precious loved one dies as the deceased would expect no less from them.