Cover Image: The Singing Trees

The Singing Trees

Pub Date:   |   Archive Date:

Member Reviews

The Singing Trees took my expectations and blew them out of the water! I had to wait a couple of days just to get my thoughts in order before I could write a proper review and do this book justice! 

Annalisa Mancuso is a young aspiring artist in small town Maine. After losing both of her parents in a tragic car accident, she goes to live with her aggressively Italian grandmother. Seeing what happens when you open your heart to experience love and the heartbreak that it will inevitably bring, Annalisa swore off love. Until she meets Thomas Barnes, an Ivy league student who is quite the charmer! Will she allow herself the luxury of experiencing love and all it has to offer, or will she push Thomas away to protect herself all that can go wrong? 

This book… This book made me so freaking mad! The victim mentality, the “woe is me” bullshit, and looking for things to go wrong and when they did, the “I told you so” was infuriating and agonizing, yet so typical for the age and the endured trauma. Being on this side of the fence, being as wise as a 24-year-old can be with both her parents, it was incredibly frustrating. But then Thomas or Annalisa would say something that made me laugh out loud, and then I was fine again! Annalisa and Thomas had a young, honest, and passionate love that comes once in a lifetime, and I really enjoyed seeing their relationship play out through the thick, the thin, and the just plain unfair. 

Boo Walker has such a way with words. I’m positive he could write about how entertaining it is to watch paint dry and I would believe him with every fiber of my being! Seriously, the storytelling was so well done! Fully developed characters who grew and changed with time, painting vivid pictures of the environments, and invoking appropriate emotional responses in his writing are why I have placed this book at number three on my list of top 10 favorite books! 

Many thanks to the publisher and Netgalley for the ARC in exchange for an honest review! This book is set to be published on August 3rd, 2021.
Was this review helpful?
The Singing Trees is a coming of age story set in the late 1960's and 70's. After the death of her parents Annalisa comes to live with her strict Nonna in Peyton Mills, Maine. I tried to like this book but the writing was very typical for a teenage and a bit flat. Nothing pulled me into hold my interest for long.  Thanks to author Boo Walker, Lake Union Publishing, and NetGalley for allowing me to read this advanced copy for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?
After completing 40% of this book (Part 1) I have decided not to continue reading.

This is a coming of age story about a girl named Annalisa who is determined to pursue a career in art.  After meeting Thomas, a boy she falls in love with, her fears of following in her deceased parent's footsteps come to light.  Annalisa is conflicted.  Can she pursue a career in art while devoting herself to a loving relationship?

This book didn't work for me for a couple of reasons.  The writing tells rather than shows how and why things are happening.  The love between Thomas and Annalisa felt too immature for what they were going through or deciding.  

Writing wise, the figurative language in the book was so random that it was distracting.  There are tons of similes that are WAY out there and that could have been cut from the text. I also frequently forgot that the book was set in the 1970's.  It was only when 1970's events were mentioned that I would remember that's then it was set.  This could be less of an issue later in the book as I stopped reading right when Thomas is drafted.

I think this book will work for Young Adult readers who enjoy a good coming of age story or a story of love conquering all, but unfortunately it did not work for me.
Was this review helpful?
This is an incredible novel of love, of loss and of finding one’s self amid the love and loss. The ups and downs will make you feel like you are traveling a mountain road searching for the perfect destination.
I voluntarily read and reviewed an advanced copy of this book. All thoughts and opinions are my own.
Was this review helpful?
I was kindly blessed with an ARC offering of this wonderfully written read.  In a world of light beer and burgers, this is a delightful feast of fine merlot and lobster tortellini! Walker manages to weave together the complexity of generational relationships and class disparity while he walks the fine line of balancing dysfunctional family dynamics.. I laughed, cried and finally cheered for the good guys! You'll meet and become immediately invested in Annalisa, a young girl balancing the desperate loss of her parents while she struggles to fulfill her deep need to create and succeed, thinking that she simply must choose either career or family. Boo Walker simply has a way with words, evocative, minus the cheese.
Was this review helpful?
The Singing trees by Boo Walker follows the story of Annalise, who meets Thomas while still in school. On leaving school she moves to the city to chase her dream of becoming an artist, while Thomas is sent to fight in Vietnam. 

Will she fulfill her dream, does Thomas come home safely, does love conquer all?

If I'm honest, I struggled with this book and was a full 75% in before I could finally find a connection with Anna. It was a sweet story of love overcoming a myriad of boundaries but I found the characters too shallow and the story telling a little unbelievable at times.

However, this is worth a read if you like a romance.
Was this review helpful?
The Singing Trees was an emotional book that drew me right in.

Set in the 1970s, we meet two teens from opposite ends of the track (if you want to put it that way). While Annalisa doesn't want to fall in love because of her parent's past, Thomas doesn't want to give up on the love he has for her, even willing to give up his inheritance. 

I was feeling all the feels, and had a hard time separating the book from real life, actually waking up a few times the next morning feeling like I needed to check up on the characters. I have never read any books by Boo Walker before, but if the others are written like The Singing Trees, I can tell you I will be reading them all!
Was this review helpful?
A lovely book.

The story is emotionally powerful, if a little teenage angsty in places. I found myself drawn right in, the characters felt so real, so read much of it compulsively over 2 sittings. 

Some of the bigger issues in the story I felt were talked around rather than about which was a little annoying, and the ending felt too tidy - but that may just be my cynical side talking! 

Great wee read overall. Liked it a lot.
Was this review helpful?
Thank you to Netgalley and Lake Union Publishing for the opportunity to read this beautiful book. 

This story is set in the early 70’s in small town in Maine. Annalisa comes from a large Italian family and is living with her paternal grandmother Nonna after the death of her parents. 

She is fighting the demons of the time, wanting to develop her art and overcoming her grief. She has a dream to move to the city and take art classes, have her work shown professionally. 

She meets Thomas who comes from a Presbyterian family that doesn’t approve of her relationship. The bond between them is really powerful and despite trying to deny it, it doesn’t go away. 

This story is written so beautifully, it had me in tears in the really emotional parts. A stunning read!
Was this review helpful?
The title of Boo Walkers new book “The Singing Trees” reverberated in my soul. I’m a singer and trees are my most favorite plant on the earth. My imagination took off with the suggestion posed that trees could sing! I would have chosen this book just for the title but I’ve read Boos’s other books and was anxious to experience this new ride into the heart of the story. 

And what heart this story has! Within the first few paragraphs I was already connected to the characters and enticed with bits and morsels about them which fed my desire to know their story and how the “singing trees” came to be for both of them. Finding the heart of these two souls takes us on a journey through the span of life starting in the 60’s to present time, but mostly centered in the volatile years of the 60’s and 70’s, a time of such conflict and growth. 

The characters in this story literally leapt into my heart as they made their way in the world, growing up and growing old, finding and losing the love that is the purpose of life. The twist and turns of plot and story lead us deftly into the lives of each main character, drawing us forward with place and time. 

Time sings in this story too and is a great metaphor of the tide that carries us through life. Singing trees, singing clocks and singing hearts beacon us to check our own hearts and what we hold dear. What makes art and life real? How do we each find our voice? Who do we trust? And how do we know our hearts desire?

A portrait of an artist and a time and family. I drank it down like a tall, cool glass of water in summer. The title captured me and the story didn’t let me go. Bravo to Boo for singing a story straight to our hearts!
Was this review helpful?
This book waas amaxing from the first sentence it had me glued and made me think. And so well written. I cant wait for this to be relased Because im picking it right up the moment it is. I wasnt sure if i was going to like this book usually its not up my alley but i surprised myself on that. Definitely looking towards more books from this author.
Was this review helpful?
Boo Walker Just Has A Way With Words. That's really all there is to this one. The story is emotional yet also one told in so very many ways by so very people. The story of the late 60s and mostly early 70s (with prologue and epilogue in 2019, and penultimate chapter later in the 70s), of a pair of star crossed lovers in that perilous time, of loving someone yet having goals of your own. Walker walks into this well-worn area and even era, and owns it in a way I've only seen *one* other book do in all of my vast and diverse reading - Laurie Breton's Coming Home. That book was an absolute gut punch that left you absolutely devastated for days. Walker's is one that will slap you in your face several times, feint to the groin, and then land a hay maker right in your solar plexus at the end, right when you thought you were already completely spent. Truly a beautiful story, superbly crafted. Very much recommended.
Was this review helpful?
I have about 20 pages left but I needed to gather my thoughts first, because I just know I will bawl my eyes out once I finish this book. I remember I reading the blurb on Netgalley and thought it intriguing because it said so much but revealed very little as well. That and the pretty cover were enough to pick my interest. 

This story is set over the course of a decade during the 70s, in New England, and revolves around Annalisa, a young woman whose one true desire is to live and breathe as an artist. Painting is a craft she has honed her whole life and not even the small town she has grown up in can stop her from soaring. However, on the eve of her taking a new step toward fulfilling her big dreams, she meets Thomas and his unexpected presence (and his family baggage) puts her beautiful but fragile aspirations at risk. I do want to say more, but I believe this book will be appreciated best if you go in mostly blind. 

I've never read any Boo Walker story before this one and I am so thankful I had the opportunity to get an ARC of "The Singing Trees." It was just so good. Talk about giving a new meaning to slow burn! Be warned, I felt on the verge of tears most of the time, and though I admit I can be moved more or less easily, to be able to leave me as a wreck page after page is really a feat in itself. Two thirds in, I thought my heart really could not handle the pain any longer (I still did). The author has a way with his words and his characters; everything seems very humble and very touching at the same time, as if you were just taking your time inhaling and exhaling, connecting and contemplating. It looked simple but it really isn't. It's not as spiritual as I make it sound, but the story, the protagonists and their experiences felt so very human in all of their complex glory. I can't quite give it justice with my words here, but it was really beautiful.
Was this review helpful?
This would be a great book for our book club! Loved it!  A lovely enchanting read to snuggle up to, I really enjoyed this book from this author and will definitely  be  reading more from them in the future.
Heartwarming  right through with lots of relatable characters.
Was this review helpful?
This is a predictable book about families, the decisions we make, the people we love, the betrayals we suffer. It’s about prejudices and the abilities to try and control those we hold dear. It’s also about resilience and forgiveness. 

This is a perfect beach read or a good story for a book discussion group.
Was this review helpful?
This is a beautiful story of people intertwined at the heart by the vines of love, hurt forgiveness and finally restoration. It grabbed me at the prologue and pulled me through by need for more. It is well written and flows great moving from one vivid word picture to another. I found myself immersed in the story. The only flaw was a few well placed lines of extreme profanity which were not only totally unnecessary but even felt awkward as if someone else stuck a random sentence into the book. It interrupted the flow momentarily. I am sure I visibly flinched. Overall, a must read. It’s a great book to lose yourself in for a few days.
Was this review helpful?
'The Singing Trees' by Boo Walker is a touching story about the complicated relationship between following your dreams and following your heart. The story centres around Annalisa, an aspiring artist growing up in a small town who dreams of having a successful career as an artist. When she meets and falls in love with a young man named Thomas, both begin to grapple with the potential of their relationship and what that may mean for their dreams. Family secrets, heartbreak, and forgiveness paints a beautiful picture of what the purpose of life really is all about.

The 1970s storyline brought a vintage simplicity to the story which allowed Annalisa and Thomas' relationship to be the focus. The writing was evocative without being wordy or cheesy and while the idea of two people in love from different backgrounds is not new, the self-discovery aspects of this story were refreshing and I wish more female characters like Annalisa (strong yet vulnerable) existed in literature.

This was an emotional story that made me cry at some points because of the pain and passion and that was so beautifully and respectfully written. Sometimes in life, what you think might hold you back, is the very thing that will allow you to soar. When you open up your heart, life can offer so many possibilities which is the wonderful thing about love. We are afraid of getting hurt, of opening up, of taking a risk, but how can you ever discover who you truly are if you are afraid, closed off, and tentative?

There will be times in your life when you will read a book and it will feel as though it was written specifically for you, and it will change you. For me, 'The Singing Trees' is that book. I am so grateful that I had the opportunity to  read this meaningful story.
Was this review helpful?
Its 1969 and Annalisa Mancuso has closed into herself following the tragic loss of her parents. Inspired partially by her mother, Annalisa devotes everything she has left to her painting. She's desperate to find her voice and feels that the best way to do so is to leave her town and everything it represents. Seems simple enough, until Thomas enters the picture and changes the course of our heroines life leading her on a somewhat bumpy journey she never expected. Is risking everything the thing to do?

This is a stunning narrative with well developed characters that tug at your heart strings. From the first page perfectly chosen words draw the reader near, weaving a web that will leave you with an intense desire to crawl in to the story and never return. 

Boo Walkers passion and brilliance is once again very evident in this book as with previous novels, anyone who is familiar with Boo Walker will know exactly what I'm talking about, and for those who aren't what are you waiting for? This novel present an excellent start to your love affair with this author. 

A very big thankyou to Netgalley and Boo Walker for an advance copy for me to leave my honest response to the book in question. I will be singing praise for The Singing Tree's until everyone I meet is reading this one.
Was this review helpful?
This book! It starts out with a slow build, reeling you in as you follow the story. Annalisa wants to paint more than anything and feels she needs to leave her hometown in order to find her creative voice. 
 Thomas comes  along and with one look things change.
Life gets in the way, family, war and making decisions that
at the time seemed right. 
 I feel like I rushed through this book, it was so good I couldn’t wait to find out what happened. Very few books leave me with tears running down my face.
Thank you Boo Walker for the early copy of this amazing book!
Was this review helpful?
This love story is a real journey, worth every step. It was inspiring to follow the dreams of a young artist as she fought against the loving limits of her family and her small Maine town and made her way to Portland to pursue her dream. The plot twists kept coming, and the author does a great job of taking you back to the 1970s with all the hope and turbulence colliding in the air around every decision.  THE SINGING TREES is an emotional investment, but the payoff is worth it.  An amazing read for artists of all stripes. Thanks to Lake Union Publishers and NetGalley for providing a copy of this book in exchange for an honest review.
Was this review helpful?