The Botanist’s Apprentice is the first in Arden Powell’s Flos Magicae series about a world where magic and magical studies exist, if somewhat uneasily.
A slow burn romance builds around the shared love of two mens passion and study of deadly plants. That’s such a fascinating idea that’s gets even more marvelous when the author creates a few charismatic, albeit horrifying deadly flora to add into the story as a main element.
Eli Katz is all young enthusiasm, , his intense passion for and research about deadly plants have led him to the very man and his well known greenhouse that can help him achieve his dreams. Powell ‘s Katz is believable, adorable in his intensity, and grounded in the way he views his new surroundings and Mr . Robert Lord-Harding. It’s both with the highest respect. And , to himself, acknowledging a growing attraction.
Robert Lord-Harding starts off as the lonely stiff researcher, who upon realizing he’s met a kindred spirit , starts to share his passion, watching with a quiet joy.
I love this aspect of the story. The beginning of their journey together as he opens his amazing greenhouse to Eli for the first time…
This story is short but has some unexpected moments and elements to it. Ones that brings chills, a gasp or two, and a lovely epilogue.
I started this trilogy with the much darker Winter’s Dawn so wasn’t expecting the lightness , joy of magic, or a slow burn romance. Even with killer plants. I always appreciate a deadly bit of flora!
Love it! Highly recommending this and the much darker bookend to this trilogy, Winter’s Dawn. Now to finish it up.
🔹The Botanist’s Apprentice #1
🔹The Batchelor’s Valet #2
🔹Winter’s Dawn #3
https://www.goodreads.com › showThe Botanist’s Apprentice (Flos Magicae, #1) by Arden Powell – Goodreads
Recent college graduate Eli Katz is desperate to continue his studies in the field of magical botany. When a family friend arranges an apprenticeship for him with the most famous botanist in the country, Eli leaps at the chance without asking questions.
Robert Lord-Harding is a reclusive bachelor with an interest in dangerous plants. What he’s not interested in is another apprentice—especially not after the scandal of his last one. But, intrigued by Eli’s research, he offers Eli the chance to prove himself and earn access to his greenhouse.
Ever the keen student, Eli thrives under the attention. And if Lord-Harding is younger and more attractive than Eli had imagined, and if his teaching methods are more hands-on . . . Well, it’s not the first time Eli has had a crush on an instructor. It doesn’t mean he has to act on it.
But Eli and Lord-Harding aren’t the only ones in the greenhouse. A carnivorous plant that emits pheromones to lure men into its deadly embrace has been watching them flirt for weeks. Its pollen is irresistible, and it has certain effects on male physiology that make it impossible to ignore. Eli and Lord-Harding might be able to resist their attraction to each other, but resisting the man-eater is something else altogether.
The Botanist’s Apprentice is an 18,000-word standalone fantasy short with an HEA.