The Language of Flowers Discussion Guide: Home
Resources Regarding the Victorian Language of Flowers (Floriography)
- Floriography: The Language of Flowers in the Victorian EraProFlowers.com, August 09, 2011
- Language of FlowersFrom Wikipedia, March 15, 2013
- Flower Meanings: The Language of FlowersFrom almanac.com, January 11, 2023.
Articles, Interviews, and Reviews
- Book Review: "The Language of Flowers"Washington Post Book Review, September 6, 2011
- Helping Children After Foster Care: Vanessa Diffenbaugh’s How I Write InterviewThe Daily Beast, August 15, 2012
- Speaking Of Foster Care In 'The Language Of Flowers'NPR Interview (with audio), August 27, 2011
- A Bouquet of Petals and Thorns, All Defined With Meticulous PrecisionNew York Times Book Review, September 7, 2011
A Victorian Flower Dictionary by Mandy Kirkby
Videos about Diffenbaugh's The Language of Flowers
Book Trailer for The Language of Flowers
- What potential do Elizabeth, Renata, and Grant see in Victoria that she has a hard time seeing in herself?
- While Victoria has been hungry and malnourished often in her life, food ends up meaning more than just nourishment to her. Why?
- Victoria and Elizabeth both struggle with the idea of being part of a family. What does it mean to you to be part of a family? What defines family?
- Why do you think Elizabeth waits so long before trying to patch things up with her long-lost sister Catherine? What is the impetus for her to do so?
- The first week after her daughter’s birth goes surprisingly well for Victoria. What is it that makes Victoria feel unable to care for her child after the week ends? And what is it that allows her to ultimately rejoin her family?
- One of the major themes in The Language of Flowers is forgiveness and second chances – do you think Victoria deserves one after the things she did (both as a child and as an adult)? What about Catherine? And Elizabeth?
- What did you think of the structure of the book – the alternating chapters of past and present? In what ways did the two storylines parallel each other, and how did they diverge?
- The novel touches on many different themes (love, family, forgiveness, second chances). Which do you think is the most important? And what did you think was ultimately the lesson?
- At the end of the novel, Victoria learns that moss grows without roots. What does this mean, and why is it such a revelation for her?
- Based on your reading of the novel, what are your impressions of the foster care system in America? What could be improved?
- Knowing what you now know about the language of the flowers, to whom would you send a bouquet and what would you want it to say?
If you liked The Language of Flowers, you might enjoy the following books.
- The Care and Handling of Roses with Thorns byISBN: 9780399157752
- White Oleander byISBN: 9780316285261
- The Lost Garden byISBN: 9780393051834
- Saving CeeCee Honeycutt byISBN: 9780670021390
- Like Family byISBN: 9780316597425
- Where the Heart Is byISBN: 9780446519724
- Ellen Foster byISBN: 9780679728665