Tuesday, 12 May 2015

The Faerie Tree - Jane Cable

How can a memory so vivid be wrong?

I tried to remember the first time I’d been here and to see the tree through Izzie’s eyes. The oak stood on a rise just above the path; not too tall or wide but graceful and straight, its trunk covered in what I can only describe as offerings – pieces of ribbon, daisy chains, a shell necklace, a tiny doll or two and even an old cuckoo clock.
"Why do people do this?" Izzie asked.
I winked at her. "To say thank you to the fairies."

In the summer of 1986 Robin and Izzie hold hands under The Faerie Tree and wish for a future together. Within hours tragedy rips their dreams apart.

In the winter of 2006, each carrying their own burden of grief, they stumble back into each other’s lives and try to create a second chance. But why are their memories of 1986 so different? And which one of them is right?

I have fairly eclectic tastes when it comes to reading but probably what underlies my reading choices most is a mystery.  I wouldn't put this book into my usual choice category, but it did seem to have an air of mystery about it and I hoped the romance element wasn't going to be too prevalent. The title indicated to me that it was going to be a stretch of the imagination with tales of folklore and such like - how wrong could I have been.......

Wow - what a surprise this book was. I found it totally enthralling, tried to keep reading even when my eyes were closing - it takes a great book for me to do that. Right from the start of the book when Izzie sees a tramp and recognises him as someone she once knew I was hooked on so many different levels. 

The story that unfolded from both the perspective of  Izzie and that of Robin (the tramp) was truly amazing. I felt that I wasn't reading a work of fiction at all, so strong were the character voices and their actions that I felt like I was just watching it all happen in front of me.

It is said that there are three versions of the truth "what I think happened" what you think happened" and "what actually happened" and that I feel sums up this very clever book. There are a few twists - there is some romance, but not in a chick lit or Mills & Boon way! Basically it's a cracking story with a difference and one that I will not forget for some time. Whilst originally The "Faerie Tree" element of the book didn't appeal to me - I found myself drawn into the tales and intrigued by the beliefs.

As they say - "never judge a book by its cover" and I am so glad I didn't do that with this book as I would have missed an excellent read.

I had heard of Jane's first novel The Cheesemakers House but never got around to reading it - so many books so little time! - however, I think after this fabulous book I really must make time to read it soon.

My thanks to Netgalley, Jane Cable and Troubador Publishing for supplying a free copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.

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