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The Wishing Trees Review and Book Give-Away



The Wishing Trees by John Shors:  Review and Free (Author Signed!) Book Contest


By: Mirah W. (mwelday)


The Wishing Trees is about trying to find hope and direction after the death of a loved one.  Kate, a wife and mother, realizes she is dying and understands her husband and daughter will have difficulties accepting her death.  Before she passes away she devises a plan to move her family closer to acceptance and help them find a way to live again.  Kate wants her husband Ian to take their daughter Mattie on the trip through Asia the family had planned to take in honor of Kate and Ian’s fifteenth wedding anniversary.

Ian is uncertain about the journey but he grants Kate’s last wish and takes Mattie on the trip, visiting places Kate and Ian once explored together.  But they also go on adventures of their own, creating new memories for the two of them.  Throughout their journey, they leave wishes about their futures in ‘wishing trees’ and they experience miracles that bring them closer to healing.  Ian and Mattie meet people and experience moments that change how they look at the world.  But will they find a way to open their hearts to love and happiness once again?

I found this story of love and grief to be very heartwarming.  I think most little girls would want a father like Ian.  He was caring but not smothering. He doesn’t talk to her like she’s a child, he realizes the death of her mother has forced her to grow up in ways other children might not.  The journey they take together allows both of them to have moments of happiness, sadness, disappointment, hope and fear.  All of these emotions and the characters’ reactions to situations give the novel a feeling of reality; like they are two real people you could know who are trying to cope with a tragedy.

In this novel John Shors does what I think he does best: he captures the authenticity of a culture in a way I’ve seen few other writers do with such success. In his novels, he breathes life into places and they become characters in the story, not just settings.  I have been to several of the countries in this book (Japan, Thailand, Hong Kong) and John captures the local people, sites and language beautifully.  I have said before John’s novels allow me to travel the world without leaving the comfort of my reading chair and I think you’d agree.  If you haven’t read anything by John, this would be a great place to start!  And, lucky for you, PBS is giving away a copy with this review!

Want a chance to win the signed copy of The Wishing Trees?  Here’s how:  Leave a comment to this blog about where you’d like to visit and why.  Throughout The Wishing Trees Ian and Mattie are on a trip of discovery, visiting places with memories Ian can share with Mattie and visiting new places to create new memories.  They learn more about themselves and one another through their trip together.  Where would your trip of discovery take you?  What would you hope to learn?  A winner will be chosen at random from all entries.

To learn more about John’s novels and philanthropic efforts, visit his site at www.johnshors.com or follow him at facebook.com/johnshors or twitter.com/johnshors.







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15 Responses to “The Wishing Trees Review and Book Give-Away”

  1. K. R. P. S. (THEkrps) says:

    This sounds like an awesome book. Where would I like to visit? Now, most anywhere because I adore exploring new places. But perhaps #1 on my wish list would to be to go to Germany, not only to explore there, but in order to see my brother and his family, who we obviously don’t see all that often.

  2. Cheryl says:

    I would love to travel the world but realistically know that it will never happen. Life changes have taken care of that for me. I just hope someday to make it to Hawaii.

  3. With my kids mostly out of the nest and scattered about, I would want to travel to visit them.

  4. Wow! Sounds like a fabulous book. I would give it to my sister, whose former husband is dying of cancer & then maybe their daughter would read it. Maybe it would help. As far as travel, I’ve enjoyed almost everywhere I’ve ever been & wouldn’t mind revisiting. but the place of my heart is the British Isles. I had a wonderful visit last summer but want to explore Southern England & more of Scotland- I feel so comfortable & at home there.

  5. Cari (ladycari) , says:

    Awesome, ANOTHER book I just have to read! Great review!!

    I really want to go to Ireland. I have always been mysteriously drawn to Ireland and all thing Irish. I firmly believe I was an Irish lass in a former life, and feel compelled to return to my homeland.

  6. Alana L. (racemom) , says:

    I’d love to travel to Prague. I hear it’s beautiful and I’d like to see the birthplace of my great grandmother.

  7. Nena C. (camperchick) says:

    I want to cruise the Mediterranean coast!

  8. Candace H. (candacehnc) says:

    I would go to Haiti or Guatamala or Peru, on a mission trip with my family where we could explore other cultures but also serve together. Looking forward to reading this book.

  9. Dana says:

    I’d love to go on a safari to Africa to see/photograph all the amazing animals. I’d also like to take my mom/nephew to Scotland and Wales and trace our heritage (my moms’s dream trip!) sounds like an amazing book:)

  10. Brenna B. (demiducky25) says:

    This sounds like an amazing book! I teach part 1 of a 2 year World History course so I’d love to visit the sites of all the civilizations I teach (from prehistoric people in Africa to Medieval Europe) in the order I teach it in. That way I could visit ruins, see artifacts in museums, go see where certain historical events happened, and I know that would be pretty much impossible cost-wise and time-wise, but that would be my dream trip. 🙂

  11. OriBori , says:

    Would love to go to Easter Island and see those amazing statues!

  12. Jean L. (MeanJean) says:

    At my age, traveling by book is the only type of travel open to me. I love my little corner of Kansas, but I like to travel all over the world from my Lazy-Boy.

  13. Lori B. says:

    Sounds like a great read. I am a east coast girl who wants to see California and the Pacific ocean before I die.

  14. catsandroses says:

    I’d like to travel to Israel. When I was dating my husband, he left for a six week stay in Israel, as part of an archeological dig team. I had the opportunity to go as well, but my parents invited me and my sister on a cruise to the Virgin Islands. Never having been on a cruise before (or since), I opted for the cruise. I don’t really regret it, but hearing all his stories and seeing his slides of Israel makes me wish I had gone when I had the chance (he was part of a yearly archeological excavation team, but shortly after returning from our trips, we got engaged, married, then moved across the country, and he’s never returned to Israel). Maybe some day we’ll go, and I’ll have a fantastic built-in tour guide!

  15. MIRAH W. (mwelday) says:

    Thanks, everyone, for taking the time to read the blog and post your comments! All of your travels…either in person or through the pages of a book, sound wonderful! Aside from reading, traveling is one of my most favorite things so this book was a dream for me.

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