Wednesday, June 10, 2009

The Crying Tree

by Naseem Rakha

Lately I feel like I just don't enough time to read. Work and sleep get in the way! I could literally sit on a beach for an entire day (every day) and read until my heart's content. But alas, I need to make money.

Books like this one take me by surprise and make me want to read cover-to-cover in one sitting. I nearly did read The Crying Tree in one sitting; at least for me, 3 days is a short amount of time!
I was up way too late on a school night because I couldn't wait one more day to learn how the book ended.

The Stanley family live in rural Illinois just like the generations before them. One day Nate, the patriarch, announces that the family is moving to Oregon where he will become deputy sheriff of a small town. Irene, his wife, vehemently opposes this idea while their teenage children aren't so keen on the idea either. The family finally relents and they leave their family, home and friends. Not long after the move, the Stanley house is robbed and Shep, the son, who is unfortunately in the house, is murdered. It doesn't take long to find the suspect, who gets put on trial and receives the death penalty. For 19 years the family struggles to move on without their son. When Irene realizes that she can't harbor the hatred she has for the murderer, she feels she has no other choice but to forgive him. She and Daniel Robbin form a strange bond that seems to comfort Irene. Finally, Robbin's execution is scheduled and the Stanley family must decide if they want to be witnesses.

I won't give any more of the plot away, but be assured that the story takes a few very interesting turns. It's a really quick read, well-written and poignant story.

(This book isn't scheduled to release until July 2009, but I was lucky enough to get my hands on an Advanced Reader Copy.)

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