the world of the flowers of time

The Flowers of Time is set in Kashmir and Ladakh in the 1780s. They are now part of the Indian Union Territory of Jammu & Kashmir.

Edie and Jones travel together from Srinagar in Kashmir to Leh in Ladakh, which they call Little Tibet, following roughly this route.

The road is now India’s National Highway 1. It is usually closed November and mid-June because of the high snowfall and in the late eighteenth century it would have been difficult to travel even using ponies-travel was largely on foot until the Treaty Road was made in the nineteenth century. Edie and Jones are a little before their time. If you click through to the google map, you can use Street View and see some of the scenery they would have passed through.

You can read about modern Leh here and this is a very good site about the wildlife of Kashmir which also has pictures of Srinagar’s famous bridges.

This was a completely new era for me and cost me a lot of research-time. The project was inspired by this article about plant hunters on the BBC Website in 2018 that swam round in my head for quite a while.

When I got going, I relied heavily on ‘Inglorious Empire: What the British Did to India‘ by Shashi Tharoor for background, plus ‘She-Merchants, Buccaneers and Gentlewomen: British women in India 1600 – 1900‘ by Katie Hickman about women in India and ‘The Honourable Company: a History of the English East India Company‘ by John Keay. I recommend these three as giving a reasonable overview of the pre-British Empire period.

I also did a lot of reading about the Victorian flower-painter Marianne North ‘A Vision Of Eden: The Life And Work Of Marianne North‘ and found ‘Among the Tibetans‘ by Isabella Bird illuminating. I based a lot of their adventures on Isabella’s journey.

  • A determined lady botanist and a non-binary explorer make the long journey over the high Himalayan mountain passes from Kashmir to Little Tibet, collecting flowers and exploring ruins on the way. Will Jones discover the root of the mysterious deaths of her parents? Will she confide in Edie and allow her to help in the quest? A stand-alone f/enby romance set in the Lost in Time universe, in the Himalayas in 1780. #Enby #LGBTQ #LGBTQreads #LGBTQRomance #LGBTQBooks #Romance #OwnVoices
  • A 2,300 word short story set a few years after the end of The Flowers of Time. Edie and Jones are living in England, at Penel Orlieu. It's a peaceful, contented existence filled with painting, science and each other. What could possibly go wrong? #lesfic #wlw #sapphic #paranormal
  • It's 1780. A determined lady botanist and a non-binary explorer make the long journey over the high Himalayan mountain passes from Kashmir to Little Tibet, collecting flowers and exploring ruins on the way. Will Jones discover the root of the mysterious deaths of her parents? Will she confide in Edie and allow her to help in the quest?  It’s a trip fraught with perils for both of them, not least those of the heart. #wlw #lesfic #sapphic #nonbinary #paranormal #historical #audiobook
  • It's 1780. A determined lady botanist and a non-binary explorer make the long journey over the high Himalayan mountain passes from Kashmir to Little Tibet, collecting flowers and exploring ruins on the way. Will Jones discover the root of the mysterious deaths of her parents? Will she confide in Edie and allow her to help in the quest?  It’s a trip fraught with perils for both of them, not least those of the heart. #wlw #lesfic #sapphic #nonbinary #paranormal #historical #audiobook
  • Meet the Author: The Flowers of Time by A.L. Lester
  • The Flowers of Time is now out!   Follow our determined lady botanist and our non-binary explorer as they travel over the mountains of Kashmir and Ladakh in 1780. It's a trip fraught with perils for both of them, not least those of the heart.   #FlowersofTime #queerbooks  #FFRomance #QueerRomance #LesbianRomance #LesFic #NonBinaryRomance #EnbyRomance #Enby #LGBTQ #LGBTQreads #LGBTQRomance #LGBTQBooks #Romance #OwnVoices #AmWriting #wlw #eighteenthcentury #18thc #promoLGBTQ #writeLGBTQ
  • The Flowers of Time is out today!   Follow our determined lady botanist and our non-binary explorer as they travel over the mountains of Kashmir and Ladakh in 1780. It's a trip fraught with perils for both of them, not least those of the heart.   #FlowersofTime #queerbooks  #FFRomance #QueerRomance #LesbianRomance #LesFic #NonBinaryRomance #EnbyRomance #Enby #LGBTQ #LGBTQreads #LGBTQRomance #LGBTQBooks #Romance #OwnVoices #AmWriting #wlw #eighteenthcentury #18thc #promoLGBTQ #writeLGBTQ
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