Vintage Contemporaries

Scent of Darkness

Publisher: Vintage

Deep in the bayous of Louisiana exists a world of fortune-tellers, soothsayers, and makers of potent elixirs. Among them is Evangeline’s grandmother, Louise, a master of scent-making and perfume. And when Eva is eighteen, Louise leaves her the ultimate gift—a scent created just for her. However, the bottle comes with a warning: do not remove the crystal stopper unless you want everything in your life to change. 
 
From the moment she places a drop on her neck, Eva is the object of intense desire to everyone around her. Strangers follow her down the street, a young boy appears at her door asking for a favor, and two men—one kind and good, the other dark and exciting—fall madly in love with her. As her greatest gift becomes an unbearable curse, Eva will be forced to wonder if it is possible to truly love someone evil and to question the true nature of her grandmother’s legacy.

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My name is Eva, from the longer and more beautiful Evangeline. I had something very special once, something that I took for granted and lost. I set out to find it again, and as so often happens, it was right there in front of me. Or should I say it was right there inside of me, running through my veins...

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READING GUIDE

The questions for discussion contained in this guide are designed to enhance your reading group’s discussion of Scent of Darkness. This hotly anticipated second novel from Margot Berwin is a magical, seductive story about the power of scent and about what happens when a magical perfume renders a young woman...
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PRAISE FOR

“Sumptuous. . . . A story of first love, obsession, youthful sexuality and coming of age.” —The Washington Post 
 
“To give away the twists and turns in Scent of Darkness . . . would certainly be unfair, for Scent of Darkness is thoroughly engrossing.” —The New York Journal of Books
 
“Boys, you give them your heart and they just want to sniff your blood.” —Entertainment Weekly
 
“Berwin’s prose is poetic and measured, and her enchanting novel will leave readers searching for a scent of their own.” Amber Peckham, Booklist

“Berwin’s Creole-flavored romance . . . will provide plenty of pleasure to readers who enjoy a touch of magical realism in their fiction. Fans of such atmospheric writers as Alice Hoffman will find much to enjoy here.” —Bette-Lee Fox, Library Journal
 
“In Scent of Darkness, Berwin has created a compelling story surrounded by the mysterious and exotic world of New Orleans, where tarot cards foretell what’s yet to be, and fragrance is viewed as an ethereal, mystical creation capable of changing one’s life forever.” —Amber Castens, The News-Gazette