Review of Trees and Other Witnesses

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JonesLeeh
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Review of Trees and Other Witnesses

Post by JonesLeeh »

[Following is an official OnlineBookClub.org review of "Trees and Other Witnesses" by Kathy Taylor.]
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3 out of 4 stars
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We have a book about trees and how each is significant to the characters in every story. One tale is about a girl named Claudia. Her family left El Salvador for America to look for what they termed “a temporary haven.” Claudia finds a sanctuary in a tree where she goes for shade and some alone time. The tree has a heart carving with writings: “C + J.” The girl imagines what those words could represent and who did it. Claudia wonders whether it could be a romantic venture between two people.

In another story, Miguel, Beto, and other people are traversing a desert to the United States to seek greener pastures. The anecdote details the challenges they withstand: trekking the long and arduous paths under the scorching sun, shortage of water and food, etc. Also, they think of how their families back home are left worried for their wellbeing. Amid nowhere, they find a mesquite tree with water beneath it. The conclusion of the tale is tragic, nonetheless.

One thing that stood out was the uniqueness of each story and its characters. The characters’ names employed are unique, and each tale has its meaning and storyline. I enjoyed that the author inserted a picture of a tree at the beginning of every story. Albeit being monochrome pictorials, I admired them, as each is different from the other.

I loved how Kathy used terms with inner meanings, and it was up to the reader to make sense of them. In one story, talking of Xochitl’s pregnancy was not straightforward. The author says, “Xochitl began to feel life growing inside her again.”

There is a lot of Spanish that I could hardly read, let alone understand. I appreciate Kathy’s use of foreign dialects to promote language diversity. Nevertheless, the consistent use of Spanish gave me a hard time understanding segments of the book. It was hard to comprehend. Plus, repetitively looking for interpretations on Google became monotonous. I did not enjoy that. Inevitably, I rate the work 3 out of 4 stars.

Tree and Other Witnesses is professionally edited, as I detected no grammatical flaws. Kathy Taylor’s proficiency in literature is showcased by how the various stories in the book grip a reader. The choice of lexis and sentence phrasing demand thumbs up! I recommend it to people who’d love to devour a volume with random stories packed with difficulties, racism, struggling to belong, and foreign dialects.

******
Trees and Other Witnesses
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smoothcrowd
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Post by smoothcrowd »

Firstly I've got to say, this is an amazing review, focused on the captivating stories in the book (for such I now want to read the book myself). A top-notch review.
Last edited by smoothcrowd on 05 May 2022, 01:29, edited 1 time in total.
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smoothcrowd
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Post by smoothcrowd »

Then again, the book: Trees are the part of us; have survived long before us (humans), at least those that weren't chopped down by us. Has witnessed our greatest and our weakest (I think I should also write about a tree... :eusa-think: ).
I love how upon having different stories in the book, there are no complaints on any having an unfinished or rushed up storyline.
A great book and a lovely review...nice
Thanks for the review.
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Akinola John
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Post by Akinola John »

The book seems interesting. I love the way the author makes each story unique. Nice review.
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Amy Luman
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Post by Amy Luman »

I never thought about it, but trees do have an part I almost every story that we read, don’t they? I also enjoy hearing about the picture of trees before each story. I don’t normally read short stories because I don’t feel like they are long enough to really involve the reader, but perhaps I should make an exception.
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Patty Allread
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Post by Patty Allread »

Good review! I love short stories and would probably enjoy this book. I would be okay with the Spanish. Foreign language in a story can be trying, but it adds dimension and understanding to what is said if used well.
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Sarah Sonbol
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Post by Sarah Sonbol »

The book looks great. However, the presence of Spanish dialect would deter me from reading it. Thanks for the great review.
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Christopherio
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Post by Christopherio »

Tree's sometimes hold memories and have a sentimental value in our lives. This review is descriptive,illustrative and that excites me. Thanks for the review.
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Christopherio
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Post by Christopherio »

Tree's sometimes hold memories and have a sentimental value in our lives. This review is descriptive,illustrative and that excites me. I also want to understand the link created between the trees and human emotions.Thanks for the review.
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Ntokozo Joy
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Post by Ntokozo Joy »

From the title i assumed that this was tale of a murder in the woods. Luckily the truth is a lot less gruesome. thank you for the review.
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