Flowers and Stone by Jan Sikes

A fictionalized account based upon the author’s own true love story, ‘Flowers and Stone’ tells the story of naïve nineteen year old Darlina, and the reckless man she falls for. Rebelling against her overbearing parents, Darlina begins working nights as a dancer in a club. Eventually she meets and begins to develop feelings for Luke Stone, who is a womanizing singer and leader of a band. In time, Luke falls for Darlina as well, and the two begin what is bound to be a tumultuous relationship, not necessarily because of their affection for one another, but because of the choices they make, and the complicated circumstances that result from their decisions. This is an engrossing and deep love story which thrives in the rambunctious and lively land of Texas in the seventies.

The narrative that takes place in this novel is realistic and raw, which makes sense due to the fact that the characters of Darlina and Luke are based on real people. The archetype of Darlina is based on the author herself, while Luke is based on her late husband Rick. The writing is passionate and progresses from chapter to chapter, the story flowing forward in an upbeat and absorbing way. There is a great deal of depth and emotion to the storyline and the characters, causing the reader to root for the two lovebirds, even when things go wrong. The setting in Texas during the early 1970s is portrayed in a glaring light, shedding colorful ideas about what it was like to live in such a place during this time. Thus, the backdrop of the story is ever present, but the real shining glow emerges from the tale that Darlina and Luke twist together through their riveting love affair.

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