The Boys in the Trees
A NovelBook - 2008
A tragic event sends a small town reeling in Mary Swan's brilliant, Scotiabank Giller-nominated The Boys in the Trees , a haunting exploration of one family's desperation. For the first time in Vintage Canada.
William, his wife and 2 daughters, new immigrants to a small town in southern Ontario, are the picture of a devoted family. But when he is accused of embezzlement, William commits an unthinkable crime, and those who believed him to be an affectionate, attentive father are brought up short. Mary Swan examines the intricate and unexpected connections between the people in this close-knit community that continue to echo into the future. In her nuanced, evocative descriptions, a locket contains immeasurable sorrow, trees provide refuge for lost souls and grief clicks into place when a man cocks the cold-steel hammer of a revolver.
A supreme literary achievement, The Boys in the Trees offers a chilling story that swells with acutely observed emotion and humanity.
From the critics
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"[L]ife wasn’t anything like one of those novels Jenny read … it stumbled along, bouncing off one thing, then another, until it just stopped, nothing wrapped up neatly. He thought of … things that had seemed so important, so full of meaning when he was twenty, or forty, and he thought maybe [life] was like one of Jenny’s books after all. Red herrings and misdirection, all the characters and observations that seemed so central, so significant while the story was unfolding. But then at the end you realized that the crucial thing was really something else. Something buried in a conversation, a description – you realized that all along it had been a different answer, another person glimpsed but passed over, who was the key to everything. Whatever everything was. And if you went back, as Jenny sometimes did, they were there, the clues you’d missed while you were reading, caught up in the need to move forward."
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