Monday, September 10, 2012

book review: The Forgetting Tree by Tatjana Soli

The backstory: After adoring Tatjana Soli's debut novel, The Lotus Eaters (my review), I was eager to read her next novel.

The basics: Claire and her husband Forster have lived on Forster's family citrus farm in Southern California since they were married. They now have three children. When their farm is attacked, the family is torn apart.

My thoughts: Tatjana Soli does not shy away from the sadness of the human condition. Her writing is beautiful, but it's the way her characters come alive on the pages that most impresses me. I admit the description of this novel likely would not have convinced me to read this novel, but after loving The Lotus Eaters, I would gladly read anything else Soli writes, and Soli immediately pulled me into The Forgetting Tree. I read it compulsively as if it were a thriller rather than a grief-filled family saga.

Claire is the heart and soul of this novel, and I appreciated each moment I spent with her. I remain fascinated by her priorities, emotions, and experiences. I treasured the time I spent sharing Claire's journey with her. This novel wasn't what I expected, but not knowing what to expect only heightened my enjoyment.

Favorite passage: "Terror was intimate, entwined in the moment, not translatable."

The verdict: Soli's writing shines in The Forgetting Tree, and Claire is a strong, nuanced, memorable woman. This novel, although shadowed by grief, is surprisingly hopeful.

Rating: 4 out of 5
Length: 416 pages
Publication date: September 4, 2012
Source: publisher via TLC Book Tours and NetGalley

Convinced? Treat yourself! Buy The Forgetting Tree from the Book Depository or Amazon (Kindle version.)

As an affiliate, I receive a small commission when you make a purchase through any of the above links. Thank you for helping to support my book habits that bring more content to this blog!

12 comments:

  1. I really enjoyed Soli's writing in The Lotus Eaters, so I'll probably give this one a try. ;-)

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    1. Vasilly, I think you'll like this one. It's different in so many ways, but it's a dynamic female main character and great writing, just like in The Lotus Eaters.

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  2. I was just discussing on the weekend how, when you love character-driven works, some of them actually turn out to be page-turners, so you've added this one to my TBR with talk of how compulsively you read this one. Thanks!

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    1. I think you'll like this one! My review is overly brief, I fear, because I didn't want to spoil any of it. It was just lovely.

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  3. I've had Lotus Eaters out from the library but didn't get a chance to read it. This sounds very different, Soli seems to be a versatile writer.

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    1. She is versatile, but I also found myself comparing the two novels. Both feature strong, dynamic female characters. If that's the trend, I'm on board!

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  4. I also loved The Lotus Eaters, so I'm happy to see you enjoyed this one as well.

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    1. Anna, after two different novels, I'm eager to see where Soli goes next. I'll certainly be reading it.

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  5. Hmmm, the farm is attacked? I did not read her other book but it's on my club's list for November so I will get to it soon.

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    1. Ooh--I think it would make for some great discussion. I had a hard time not spoiling things in my review and would love to chat with others about it. I hope it's a hit for your book club.

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  6. I love it when I find an author whose work I truly love - I will read ANYTHING by that author, even if it doesn't seem like my kind of book at first. Looks like Soli is that kind of author for you!

    Thanks for being on the tour. I'm featuring your review on TLC's Facebook page today.

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Thank you for taking the time to comment. Happy reading!