Probing readers prompted local author Sarah Addison Allen to pen a follow-up to her first work of magical realism, Garden Spells. The resulting sequel, First Frost, picks up 10 years later, revisiting the lives of magically endowed sisters Claire and Sydney Waverly and their families. As tension arises, the relatives endeavor to maintain their close bonds. Known for her wildly creative storylines, Allen found it challenging to build upon existing characters and premises but carried on with a seat-of-her-pants approach. “I’m so completely blinded by the process of writing that I never really see what I put of myself into my books until they’re done,” she says. Allen holds a reading and signing for the paperback release of her book (the hardcover debuted last January) at Malaprop’s Monday, Jan. 4, at 7 p.m. Free. malaprops.com. Author photo by Amber S. Wallace
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