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Tainted Tree Paperback – 1 May 2008

4.3 out of 5 stars 59 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 378 pages
  • Publisher: Goldenford Publishers Limited (1 May 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0953161382
  • ISBN-13: 978-0953161386
  • Product Dimensions: 13 x 2.2 x 19.6 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 4.3 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 1,578,181 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description

From the Publisher

Everyone, it seems is seeking to find their identity through websites devoted to genealogy and TV programmes such as Who do you think you are? In addition, the search for a lost parent or child by adopted children, or the parents who gave them up, is of such great human interest that it is also often the focus of radio and television programmes.

Jacquelynn Luben's novel, Tainted Tree, tells the story of a similar quest and combines these themes, when Addie Russell, an adopted American girl, tries to find out about her English family.

About the Author

Originally from London, Jacquelynn Luben lives with her husband in a Surrey village, her children having fled the nest. Tainted Tree, her fourth book, is her second work of fiction and follows her novella, A Bottle of Plonk. She has also written many articles and short stories. When not writing, she has studied, first with Open University and subsequently at Surrey University, where she gained a degree in 2002, with a dissertation on the Harry Potter series, and she also helps her husband in his business. Tainted Tree won Second Prize at the Winchester Writers' Conference.

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Customer Reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
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Top Customer Reviews

By Ignite TOP 500 REVIEWER on 30 Aug. 2012
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
I have previously only read a couple of Jacquie's short stories so I thought it was time I tackled something longer. This is a story of an American girl, adopted from birth after the death of her English mother. Addie finds she has inherited property and money from someone described as her mother's godfather. She comes to England to see the place, possibly to put it up for sale, and to find out more about the mystery of her family background.

Jacquelynn Luben is a classy writer. Her work is always clear, logical and uncluttered. Here she patiently displays for us the history of a family through 4 generations as discovered by Addie. Addie finds help from her benefactor's lawyer and his family. This is no dry genealogical tome, however. The author has the ability to descibe and evoke emotion so that we are drawn into the details of the story and we want, we need, to find out more. There is a sad family story which unfolds here and there's scope for the old discussion about nature or nurture as we see how the women's lives reflect one another down the years. Addie is a strong character though and her determination comes through. I enjoyed this book very much indeed.
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Format: Paperback
I came across this book purely by chance and am so glad that I did. I was looking on Google to see what books were set in Guildford and noticed that this one was and available from a local publisher. It appealed to my genealogical mind, so I ordered it and it arrived on Monday just in time for a business trip. I devoured the book during my 6 hours traveling yesterday.

Addie inherits a lovely house in Guildford from someone she does not know,but she understand that the deceased has links were her mother, who died in childbirth with Addie, In America. The people that Addie's mother was living with write to advise the would be grandparents of the death of their daughter to find that they do not want to accept responsibility for the child,and after a period of time, Addie is adopted by the couple. Addie has a happy and loved childhood, but finds that she has questions of her heritage and wants to "know" her deceased Mother, and she has no idea who her father is.....Inheriting the house is a catalyst for discovering the answers.

The link is the Addie's mother was god daughter to James, and it is his house that she has inherited. Addie sets out on a journey of discovery, and as with most genealogical type searches Addie soon finds that she has more questions than answers, and that she has to live with the decisions that her ancestors made.

The author has done obvious research into genealogical searches and mentions the huge references of birth,marriage and death records at St Catherine's House, of course they are not longer available in the serch room by that has occured since the book was published earlier in the year, and the reference to it in the book reminded me of days lifting those heavy books and battling for space with other researchers.
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Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
After her mother died in America giving birth to Addie she was adopted by a caring couple who brought Addie up as their own and whom she loved very much. However, always wanting to know more about her real parents Addie gets the chance when she inherits a house in England from her real mother's 'God father'. Given a month's leave from her work after a broken love affair with her boss, Addie comes to England not only to look at the house but also to see if she can find out more about her real family.

For those not into how to trace one's ancestors don't worry as there is not much about her going to the record offices etc. What she does concentrate on is letters which her mother sent to James the Godfather as a young girl and her mother's diary. Both of these I found quite tedious and I think a lot of it could have been skipped over by the author.

Up to about three-quarters of the way through I really got engrossed in the story but towards the end I was beginning to get rather bored. It was just so neat and chocolate boxy. The ending was very predictable so no surprises. I found the supporting characters viz the Graingers and the Amery family very real and without them the story would have been a bit flat.

It's a light read so if you don't want a complicated story then I would recommend this book.
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By C. Bannister TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on 30 Aug. 2011
Format: Kindle Edition Verified Purchase
This book is set in the early 90's. Addie's adoptive aunt sees an advert advising that a solicitor's firm in Guildford is looking for Adrienne Heron or her heirs. Adrienne died the day after she gave birth to Addie. The advert seems to suggest that James the deceased owner of a house may be Addie's Grandfather. She leaves her adoptive family and a broken relationship in the US to go and investigate.

I didn't find the research completely convincing but with lots of coincidences, some letters and Adrienne's diary, Addie begins to build her family tree. Along the way there is a romance with the usual misunderstandings and difficulties.

Overall this book is well written and the story flows along with some tender moments to make you say ahh....
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I really enjoyed this book. After Addie, an American adoptee whose English mother died giving birth to her is left a house in Surrey by her mother's Godfather she comes to England determined to find out more about her mother. This she succeeds in doing wth the aid of some old letters and her mother's diary. I did feel that the amount of documentation available to her was a little unbelievable but that didn't spoil a good story and I became totally involved with Addie and her search for her roots
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