Evelio's Garden: Memoir of a Naturalist in Costa Rica
Sandra Shaw Homer, author
Enter the enchanting world of the northern highlands of Costa Rica, where the author begins a memoir, tracing the seasons and closely observing the natural riches around her. But Evelio, who helped build their house, interrupts with an idea to plant an organic garden on their property. Although her husband has already agreed, she is wary, suspecting Evelio will pull her into the daily ups and downs of his project. This is exactly what he does, creating an often funny, always frustrating, and ultimately rewarding counterpoint to her own work, such that the two inevitably intertwine on the page. Over the course of a challenging year of unpredictable weather and the depredations of wild animals and toxic chemicals, their friendship grows as Evelio teaches her about the rural sustainability of Costa Rica in decades past. But stresses over the garden and a serious health detour churn up the author’s long-buried memories, forcing her to try to make sense of her past and opening her up to profound personal change. Evelio’s Garden is a lyrical meditation on cultural values, friendship, aging, loss, and, ultimately, the healing power of the natural world.