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I listened to this and loved it. There are two stories twined throughout- the family living in the house now and the one that lived there a hundred years ago. You get the struggles we are facing now- children moving home, parenting adult children, money issues, aging- and you also get struggles back then- family, parenting, aging, Darwinism, propriety, and women making their way in society. It was a great ride!
This thought-provoking novel begins with seemingly unrelated short stories, each with a tree or trees that figure prominently. The characters are strongly depicted and some come together at a key point when activism and idealism take hold of the action. Big thoughts are meant to inform us of our world and the aspects that we take for granted and Powers delivers a sweeping and yet intimate novel of communication, devotion, loyalty, and betrayal.
I began listening to this incredible novel while painting a room, so I knew I had a few hours to get into it. At first I wasn't sure why I cared about these five boys whose mother had died and father, also known as The Murderer, had left them to fend for themselves. However Markus Zusak has again told a story well. The story begins in a deceptively simple manner that is teased out as you learn the back stories for the boys' parents, how things came to be, and how a bridge is built. There are animals, horse racing, love, illness, education, and so very much more. Prepare to be wrapped up for a while.