Solomon's Oak is the story of three people who have suffered losses that changed their lives forever.
Glory Solomon, a young widow, holds tight to her memories while she struggles to hold on to her Central California farm. She makes ends meet by hosting weddings in the chapel her husband had built under their two-hundred-year-old white oak tree, known locally as Solomon's Oak. Fourteen-year-old Juniper McGuire is the lone survivor of a family decimated by her sister's disappearance. She arrives on Glory's doorstep, pierced, tattooed, angry, and homeless. When Glory's husband Dan was alive, they took in foster children, but Juniper may be more than she can handle alone. Joseph Vigil is a former Albuquerque police officer and crime lab photographer who was shot during a meth lab bust that took the life of his best friend. Now disabled and in constant pain, he arrives in California to fulfill his dream of photographing the state's giant trees, including Solomon's Oak.
In Jo-Ann Mapson's deeply felt, wise, and gritty novel, these three broken souls will find in each other an unexpected comfort, the bond of friendship, and a second chance to see the miracles of everyday life.
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"Mapson continues to carve out her niche with this lovely, well-written story of the walking wounded reaching out to one another and the beauty of friendship." - Library Journal
"With abundant compassion and soothing humor, three damaged souls are rescued in Mapson's delicate tale of renewal and healing." - Booklist
"As in her previous novels, Mapson seems most at ease describing the relationship between human and animal ... Her facility with dialogue, however, is less impressive, but most readers will be too involved in the sweep of loss and recovery to stumble for long over awkward talk." - Publishers Weekly
"A tender portrayal of those left behind in the wake of tragedy." - Kirkus
"How does Jo-Ann Mapson do it? She makes us look at people we'd rather not see - the abandoned, the broken, the lost - and then makes us cry for them and care for them, rejoice and hope for them. One chapter into Solomon's Oak, I surrendered to Glory Solomon's hope and her collection of restless hearts, and my world simply disappeared." - Jacquelyn Mitchard
"In Solomon's Oak, we see how some things - like massive oaks, and unshakeable love - can stand the test of time. I love the way Jo-Ann Mapson writes about family - how the roots we put down are the ones that ultimately hold us together. Actually, let me correct myself: I just love the way Jo-Ann Mapson writes, period." - Jodi Picoult
"Three people aching with loss piece together new lives in Mapsons gorgeous new novel. Dazzlingly writte, indelibly moving and deeply profound, Solomon's Oak is filled with grace, heart, and wisdom, and a rich cast of indelibly real characters, right down to the dogs. Its sometimes a cliché to call a book the authors absolute best, but this one is truly a gem." - Caroline Leavitt, author of Girls in Trouble and Pictures of You
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Jo-Ann Mapson is the author of twelve novels and a book of short stories. Her work is widely anthologized and her literary papers are being collected by Boston University's Twentieth Century Author's Collection. Hank & Chloe was her debut novel. Blue Rodeo was made into a CBS TV movie starring Kris Kristofferson. The Wilder Sisters and Bad Girl Creek were Los Angeles Times bestsellers. Solomon's Oak won the American Library Association's RUSA award for women's fiction. Many of her books have been Booksense titles and Indiebound choices. Finding Casey, featuring some of the characters from Solomon's Oak, was published October 2012.
Core faculty and co-creator of The University of Alaska Anchorage's low-residency MFA Program in Writing, she lives with ...
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