Review – The Red Tree by Caitlín R. Kiernan

I posted this review of The Red Tree by by Caitlín R. Kiernan over at Good Reads.

The Red TreeThe Red Tree by Caitlín R. Kiernan
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

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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