Excerpt from Harry's Trees by Jon Cohen, plus links to reviews, author biography & more

Summary |  Excerpt |  Reviews |  Beyond the Book |  Readalikes |  Genres & Themes |  Author Bio

Harry's Trees

by Jon Cohen

Harry's Trees by Jon Cohen X
Harry's Trees by Jon Cohen
  • Critics' Opinion:

    Readers' Opinion:

  • Published:
    Jun 2018, 432 pages

  • Rate this book


Book Reviewed by:
Norah Piehl
Buy This Book

About this Book

Print Excerpt


"That's not what I was going to say. But that's correct, you should not steal food."

"It's not stealing. It's giving my portion away."

"You're not giving it away. You're wasting it. You're throwing away my money."

They circled.

"And that's not what I'm angry about," said Amanda.

"That I lost the library book? I told you I'd find it."

"Did you find it?"

"Not yet."

"Well, that's not what I'm angry about," said Amanda, in a very careful tone.

"So being late for my homework? It's just some math problems. They're easy."

Amanda shook her head. "That's not it. That's not what I'm angry about, Oriana."

Uh-oh. Oriana looked at her mother's face. Amanda's cheeks were flushed. Mom was always under control. But at the moment, she looked dangerous. Oriana held her ground. "Then what terrible, horrible thing did I do exactly?"

The world around them seemed to go suddenly still. The trees held their breath.

Amanda erupted. "It's not one thing, it's everything! It's all of it, Oriana! I'm sick of this forest. That you think something big is going to happen out here. Some big, huge magical Daddy event. I'm sick of it!"

"I didn't say what size it was."

"Don't you mess with me! It's not the size. It's the magic. It's your brain twenty-four hours a day on a nonstop diet of hidden candy and fairy tale crap and forests."

Oriana said nothing. They continued to circle—two warriors fighting an ancient battle—but Amanda was slowly narrowing the circle. She was poised to strike.

"Look around you," she said. "Okay? Look, Oriana. With your two eyes, look. You know what's in these woods? In this enchanted forest of yours? Trees. That's it. Ordinary animals, ordinary bushes and ordinary damn trees!"

Oriana muttered something under her breath. Not muttered. Incanted.

The rising red in Amanda's cheeks matched the red of Oriana's jacket. "What did you just say?" But she knew. They both knew. Exactly the words Oriana had said.

Oriana repeated them. "Persevere. See. Believe."

Words to piss off her mother. The little chant, as if Oriana was casting a spell. Words that were a magical defiance.

And, unbelievably, Oriana suddenly said one more word. The one that was absolutely guaranteed to explode her mother's brain. The one with two syllables.

"Wingèd," whispered Oriana. But not to Amanda. To the sky. Because Oriana was looking up.

Amanda was about to pounce, to sweep up her child and carry her forcibly out of the forest and back to the house, where there would be a time-out to end all time-outs. But before she could move a muscle, a large red-tailed hawk swooped low over their heads. Wing shadow, a thumping feathery whoosh of air. Amanda ducked.

But Oriana took off after it. The hawk disappeared into the woods.

Amanda stood and turned as Oriana crossed the clearing—and stopped suddenly at the edge of the woods.

Somebody in the woods cried out. A tree limb snapped.

Amanda ran up behind Oriana, drew her close and peered into a dense stand of sugar maples. She took in details…

…a section of old stone wall with a broken tree branch draped over it.

…an old sugar maple beginning to drip clear sap from a large scar.

…from the other side of the wall—a heavy rustling in the dry leaves.

Amanda stepped protectively in front of her daughter. "Hello?" she called out. Her eyes went to an object lying on the ground. A wallet. She picked it up.

Oriana saw something, too, fluttering in the leaves. She reached down and picked up a small, white rectangle of paper.

Excerpted from Harry's Trees by Jon Cohen. Copyright © 2018 by Jon Cohen. Excerpted by permission of Mira. All rights reserved. No part of this excerpt may be reproduced or reprinted without permission in writing from the publisher.

Membership Advantages
  • Reviews
  • "Beyond the Book" backstories
  • Free books to read and review (US only)
  • Find books by time period, setting & theme
  • Read-alike suggestions by book and author
  • Book club discussions
  • and much more!
  • Just $10 for 3 months or $35 for a year
  • More about membership!

Beyond the Book:
  Real Life Tree Houses

Editor's Choice

  • Book Jacket: In Byron's Wake
    In Byron's Wake
    by Miranda Seymour
    It's tempting to think that our age of celebrity worship coupled with the 24-hour news cycle is ...
  • Book Jacket: The Latecomers
    The Latecomers
    by Helen Klein Ross
    The Latecomers is the third novel written by acclaimed author Helen Klein Ross, following What Was ...
  • Book Jacket: The Inflamed Mind
    The Inflamed Mind
    by Edward Bullmore
    It is common knowledge that depression diminishes the quality of sufferers' lives, but few people ...
  • Book Jacket: The Adults
    The Adults
    by Caroline Hulse
    Things have already fallen apart on the first page of The Adults. The novel opens with an emergency ...

Book Discussion
Book Jacket
Becoming
by Michelle Obama

An intimate, powerful, and inspiring memoir by the former First Lady of the United States.

About the book
Join the discussion!

Readers Recommend

  • Book Jacket

    Golden Child
    by Claire Adam

    A deeply affecting debut novel set in Trinidad, following the lives of a family as they navigate impossible choices.
    Reader Reviews

Win this book!
Win Uncommon Type

Uncommon Type
by Tom Hanks

Surprising, intelligent, heartwarming, and a must-have for Tom Hanks fans!

Enter

Word Play

Solve this clue:

Tell I T T M

and be entered to win..

Books that     
entertain,
     engage

 & enlighten

Visitors can view some of BookBrowse for free. Full access is for members only.

Join Today!

Your guide toexceptional          books

BookBrowse seeks out and recommends books that we believe to be best in class. Books that will whisk you to faraway places and times, that will expand your mind and challenge you -- the kinds of books you just can't wait to tell your friends about.