I am so thrilled that St. Martin’s Press reached out to me to be a part of their blog tour for The Scent Keeper. This is the first time I’ve done something like this, so I’m pretty excited. It also helps that I adored this book. Holy smokes, it’s so good. Read my full review below!
Emmeline and her father live on a small island—all alone and in the middle of nowhere. Emmeline knows next to nothing about how they got there, and whenever she works up the courage to ask her father, he only answers in riddles or short “end of conversation!” statements. She loves the island, and she loves her father, so she doesn’t push.
What she does know is that they need to protect the scents. In their small cabin is a whole wall of tiny drawers filled with little corked bottles. Each bottle contains a slip of paper with a specific scent on it—maybe spruce wood or lavender. The bottles can’t be opened often, lest the scent escape, but from a young age, Emmeline understands that her father will do anything to preserve all the smells trapped inside.
I don’t want to say too much more about this book, because it is a lovely mystery that reveals itself ever so slowly and subtly over time. The story is unlike anything I’ve read before, and the writing is beyond. Like beyond beyond. It’s poetry. You know when you read an amazing book and it makes you feel a little depressed, because you know you will never write something as good as what you just read? Yeah, that’s The Scent Keeper. Some of the descriptions of Emmeline’s scents left me honest-to-God breathless. I’m still in awe.
My only minor complaint is that the conclusion felt abrupt—not by too much, but by just enough that I’m going to whine about it. Is the ending like one of Emmeline’s scents? Am I supposed to supply the missing note? I don’t know, but I needed a three-page epilogue, something to give me the closure I was looking for.
But this is a minor gripe, and I still loved, loved the book. The Scent Keeper is going to stay with me a long time, and I will definitely be checking out author Erica Bauermeister’s other work. What a phenomenal story.
Big, HUGE thank you to St. Martin’s Press for the ARC!