'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Monday 12 November 2018

Review: The Mulberry Tree

Ten-year-old Immy and her family have moved from Australia to a tiny village in the English countryside to escape personal problems that threaten their family structure.   

Immy’s dad, a GP, is unemployed and suffering from depression after an incident with one of his patients that leaves him bent under the weight of his guilt and regret. Her mother, a surgeon, has taken a job at the local hospital. Immy is starting a new school which she is looking forward to.

It is Lavender Cottage, the house they have rented for a year that is the problem. To Immy, it is the perfect place. But a mystery surrounds the dark and gnarled Mulberry tree with its claw-like branches in the yard, and has for many decades. 

Village rumour has it that the tree has taken two girls on their eleventh birthday, and Immy’s eleventh birthday is coming up. Is it sheer folly to move into such a cursed place? But Immy shows no fear of the tree although its appearance is fierce and scary. And her parents agree.

The Mulberry tree, will take your daughters one, two three. Immy is determined not to be number three. She delves into the history of the tree to see where the roots of evil began in order to protect herself. But too many people keep too many secrets.

Can she discover why the tree is as it is? What or who has caused the disappearance of two girls? Can she uncover the mystery before her eleventh birthday?

A charged and interesting sequence of events builds tension and interest in this crime/mystery novel. There is a lot unexplained, and leaves a lot for the reader to read into. A twist and turn where least expected, and many supernatural happenings turn this into a riveting read that will satisfy.

The Mulberry Tree is another brilliant novel by Alison Rushby, a master of the mysterious and unexplained and author of the award-winning The Turnkey.

Title: The Mulberry Tree
Author: Allison Rushby
Publisher: Walker Books, $17.99
Publication Date: May 2018
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781760850292
For ages: 10+
Type: Middle Fiction