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The Red Tree [Kindle Edition]

Caitlin R. Kiernan
4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)

Print List Price: £6.99
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Book Description

Sarah Crowe left Atlanta, and the remnants of a tumultuous relationship, to live alone in an old house in rural Rhode Island. Within its walls she discovers an unfinished manuscript written by the house's former tenant-a parapsychologist obsessed with the ancient oak growing on a desolate corner of the property. And as the gnarled tree takes root in her imagination, Sarah risks her health and her sanity to unearth a revelation planted centuries ago...

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Product Description


house's former tenant - a parapsychologist --obsessed with the ancient oak growing on a

desolate corner of the property. And as the --gnarled tree takes root in her imagination, Sarah

risks e health and her sanity to unearth a --revelation planted centuries ago.

About the Author

tumultuous relationship, to live alone in an old

Product details

  • Format: Kindle Edition
  • File Size: 775 KB
  • Print Length: 404 pages
  • Publisher: Roc; Reprint edition (10 July 2009)
  • Sold by: Amazon Media EU S.à r.l.
  • Language: English
  • ASIN: B002H0U1PA
  • Text-to-Speech: Enabled
  • X-Ray:
  • Word Wise: Enabled
  • Enhanced Typesetting: Enabled
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (7 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #256,944 Paid in Kindle Store (See Top 100 Paid in Kindle Store)
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Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
4.1 out of 5 stars
Most Helpful Customer Reviews
6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Deep Time and Dark Folklore 10 Oct. 2009
The first thing to mention is the old adage: Don't judge a book by it's cover. Seriously. This is not another Paranormal Romance. This is something very, very special.
The second thing to mention is that for more eloquent reviews, simply google for them, particularly the review by writer and lovecraftian scholar S T Joshi. These people are far more articulate than myself so I shall let them do their job and I shall be brief and, hopefully, helpful.
In my opinion Ms Kiernan is one of the finest writers of weird/speculative fiction currently living and The Red Tree finds her yet again doing the impossible; improving. The novel is written as a journal received by an agent and as such has a most distinctive voice of Sarah Crowe. It details... well, what does it detail? A descent into a terrifying insanity? The workings of deep time and old lore upon a land until the land becomes a voice of its own with the Red Tree its baleful glare? A tragic tale of a woman reaching the end of her road? All or none of the above, woven with some autobiographical textures from Ms Kiernan herself. To say the Red Tree is multi-layered is as gentle an understatement as saying it is a remarkable piece of writing. It casts shadows of the quality of Bradbury and Lovecraft and Blackwood to name a few, but always with a most distinct and unique voice. It is a work concerned with the darkest folklore in those remote counties and yet a very, very modern setting somehow that seems to bring the sense of time even more to the fore. The twists time puts on tales simply one of the layers it explores.
If you have never read any of her work, this is where you start. If I haven't convinced you, as I say seek out proper reviewers online, but mostly: treat yourself to a dark, wonderful journey.

Oh, and please read the preface....
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful
Author Sarah Crowe moves to a farmhouse, the "old Wight Place" in New England to write her next book in solitude, where she stumbles across an old-fashioned typewriter and an unfinished manuscript both once owned by the late Charles L. Harvey. His story, a personal diary, describes his research of 'the red tree.' The very same tree whose foreboding presence can still be seen from Sarah's kitchen window. And it's giving her nightmares.

As Sarah reads Harvey's diary, she starts to write her own and discovers the dead man's unhealthy obsession for the ancient oak is now rapidly growing into her own inescapable living hell. The fine line between reality, her disturbing dark dreams of Amanda, her dead lover, and the strange sirens of doom distort her mind until she can no longer tell reality from her imagination. Will Sarah be able to escape being the tree's next sacrifice or was her fate, like that of her ex- lover Amanda and previous tenant Charles, sealed the moment she walked through the cottage door?

Caitlin R. Kiernan is a new-to-me author with an amazing, yet macabre imagination! The Red Tree is so believable, tightly written and damned scary, I truly felt like I was reading a dead girl's diary. It amazed me how I could feel the suffocating New England heat one minute and the next I'd be chilled to the bone by the startling, ever-watchful, tree's evil presence, which loomed over this story like a shadowy ghost with a mind of its own. If you like books that spook you then The Red Tree will leave you satisfyingly unsettled making you switch on the lights before entering dark rooms. I'm a fan of Edwardian and Victorian ghost stories in the style of M.R.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars 'Don't judge a book by its cover' 9 May 2012
By Ruby
Never has the old chestnut 'Don't judge a book by its cover' been more apt than with Caitlin R. Kiernan's The Red Tree.

The cheesy `paranormal chick lit' cover totally misrepresents this extraordinarily literate piece of writing. It annoyed me so much I had to download the alternative cover from the author's website and use that!

The author relates the story of the Red Tree through a myriad of literary devices including unreliable narrators, fictional non-fiction, pretend quotations and invented local legends plus down right lies and half remembered dreams and imaginings.

The main character suffers from random episodes of forgetfulness which adds to the unsettling nature of the story leaving both the characters and the reader unsure of what is real and what is not. As a reader you become more and more disoriented and really does mess with your head!

Think 'Blair Witch' meets The Haunting of Hill House (Penguin Modern Classics) in the style of House Of Leaves

I have only one teeny, tiny gripe is that it maybe a bit too clever for its own good.
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5.0 out of 5 stars The cover is NOT the book. 28 May 2015
Format:Mass Market Paperback|Verified Purchase
This is not urban fantasy/paranormal romance. This is a beautifully written piece of literary weird/cosmic horror. Whoever ok’d this cover doesn’t seem to have read the book.
Taking the form of a journal kept by Sarah Crow, an author grieving the suicide of her partner, The Red Tree is a sumptuously written examination of grief, anger, loneliness and the effects these can have on a person’s sanity. Kiernan is masterful at her deployment of the unreliable narrator. The concept of the unreliable narrator being one that runs throughout this story; and, indeed, is carried on in her next novel The Drowning Girl.
The plot of the novel revolves around an ancient tree sitting just within sight of a farm house Sarah has rented in order to both work on her novel and try and deal with her grief. The tree is steeped in monstrous lore and terrible legends linked to barbarous rituals, serial killers and suicides. These myths and legends weave themselves into Sarah’s story, into her grief, her loss and begin to fragment her sense of self and reality.
As with all of Kiernan’s work The Red Tree is gorgeously written and a joy to read. Her prose is exceptional in the field of weird/horror writing and why she hasn’t won more awards I do not know.
Still, I don’t know what the hell is going on with that cover…
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