"In her third and most ambitious novel, Carol Bensimon shows that she is part of a strong tradition in other countries that has gained space in Brazil lately: the expatriate novel (...) In the subtext, the thesis that Brazil is a castrator of individual potentials and freedoms."

Roberto Taddei, Folha de S. Paulo

"Pervaded by generational conflicts, the novel reflects on how the search for alternative lifestyles still spills over into young people, and observes how elements that were born from the counterculture ended up being incorporated into the mainstream."

Bolivar Torres, O Globo

"Carol Bensimon just released her most mature novel."​

Alexandre Lucchese, Zero Hora

The decision to grow marijuana to help with his mother’s medical treatment gets Arthur
mixed up in a scandal that costs him his job and his father’s reputation. After his mother’s
death, he travels to northern California, where, under the pretext of doing a PhD he never
even begins, he becomes involved in growing and selling the drug.

 

In Mendoncino County, he rents a room in the house of an elderly lady, a solitary retiree, with whom he strikes up a friendship. While following the news of the mysterious disappearance of a young Brazilian woman, he becomes involved with Tamara, a waitress wrangling with the breakup of a three-
way relationship. In her frustrated attempt to experience love in an unconventional format,
she ends up sharing in the disappointment of her father, an old hippie who sees his old
commune transformed into an airbnb for artists looking for something new.


On the eve of its decriminalization for recreational use, marijuana is the silent well that
waters the whole region. Just as the lives of the residents and seasonal blow-ins revolve
around its growth cycle, the unfolding of its decriminalization pervades the existence of
various generations. Incorporating this omnipresence into her own novel, Bensimon threads
into her fiction the true and often unknown stories of many of the figures on either side of the
marijuana divide, making The Smoke Gardeners Club a skillfully-wrought panoramic tale.