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THE SLIPPING TREE is an urban/fantasy middle-grade adventure story. Ancient trees whisper and call to a little girl in Brooklyn, leading her to befriend a mysterious 500-year-old woman who guards a hidden magical forest. Through her curiosity and courage, the girl soon unmasks generations of startling family secrets, thereby earning an invaluable role as the upstart challenger to a secret society that has protected the trees for hundreds of years—perhaps to the detriment of humanity at large.
OVERVIEW—Following an errant soccer ball, a young girl named Elou learns she can talk with trees. Not only that, a few of these trees, called Slipping Trees, have the ability to sweep one off to faraway places. Following this mysterious summons, Elou forms an inexplicable bond with the unimaginably dangerous old woman—don’t call her a witch, though—and embarks upon a fateful journey that sets up a confrontation with arcane forces that have insidiously intertwined with her own family tree over many centuries.
This is a fantasy story for kids. Nonetheless, it has a scary side. After all, cannibals are people, too. Like its forebears—Narnia, Earthsea, Harry Potter, and the many worlds of Phillip Pullman —The Slipping Tree is an adventure story that slyly asks hard questions about what we inherit from our parents, both biologically and culturally, what it means to become or be a grown-up, and, at its most fundamental level, what it means to belong to a family group. Also, The Slipping Tree, reveals an environmental underpinning reminiscent of Princess Mononoke.
KEYWORDS — Girl empowerment, middle-grade, urban fantasy adventure, siblings, family trauma, ecosystem dynamics.
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