Winner of the 2010 Pacific Northwest Booksellers Association Award
San Francisco Chronicle Bestseller ~ Barnes and Noble Discover Pick
“… spellbinding storytelling.” —Publishers Weekly
“…a beautiful and passionate novel. Highly recommended.” —Library Journal
Available in Paperback July 6th
THE CRYING TREE
By Naseem Rakha
Irene and Nate Stanley and their two children, Bliss and Shep, have just relocated to the tiny hamlet of Blaine, Oregon where Nate has accepted a job as a deputy sheriff. Despite initial misgivings about the move, the Stanley family is adjusting to life in the high desert when they receive unspeakable news. Fifteen-year-old Shep has been brutally shot to death in the family’s home. Nate retreats into a brooding and looming silence; Irene finds comfort in alcohol and remains virtually inconsolable; while their young daughter Bliss is left to raise herself, which she does with the constant support of her best friend Jeff. Meanwhile, Shep’s killer, Daniel Robbins, who was nineteen at the time of the murder, spends his entire adult life on death row waiting to die.
When Irene hits rock bottom, she makes a desperate attempt to heal by pouring her rage and utter despair into a letter to her son’s killer. What she doesn’t expect is that Robbins will write back. The two begin a secret correspondence that will last years and becomes the sustaining force in Irene’s life. But as the day of Robbin’s execution nears, all of the shocking secrets that the Stanley family has been living with for years will come out, setting in motion a course of events that will test Irene’s spirit, faith, and resolve, all while Robbins’ life hangs in the balance.
Readers will surely embrace Rakha’s poignant debut as they have the similarly unputdownable sagas of such writers as Kent Haruf and Chris Bohjalian. Dramatic, wrenching, and ultimately uplifting, THE CRYING TREE (Broadway Books; July 6, 2010; Trade Paperback; 978-0-7679-3174-8) by Naseem Rakha is a novel that exposes the fault lines and cracks that appear when unthinkable tragedy turns one family upside down. But above all it is an original and unforgettable story of forgiveness, redemption, the unbreakable bonds of family, and the transformative power of love.
About the Author
NASEEM RAKHA is an award-winning broadcast journalist whose stories have been heard on NPR’s “All Things Considered” and “Morning Edition” among many other outlets. Prior to writing The Crying Tree, Naseem reported on Oregon’s September 1996 execution of Douglas Franklin Wright by lethal injection, the state’s first execution in 34 years. She received an Associated Press Award for her feature article. The Crying Tree is her first novel.
The Crying Tree By Naseem Rakha
On-sale: July 6, 2010; Broadway Books
ISBN: 978-0-7679-3174-8; Trade Paperback; 368 pages; Price: $14.00