Monday, 4 November 2013

Caragh Reviews - The Hanging Tree by Michael Phillip Cash

Published - 15th October 2013
Publisher - CreateSpace
Format - Paperback
Synopsis - Enter a world where spirits roam the earth in Michael Phillip Cash's haunting new novella, The Hanging Tree. Set amid the eerie backdrop of Long Island, an area famously steeped in old legend, two young would-be lovers contemplate their future while visits from those who have come before them reveal the lure of fate...and the power of free will. At seventeen years old, Arielle's relationship with her parents is slowly deteriorating. Angry and defiant, she is at a loss on how to cope with the tumultuous situation in which she finds herself. Arielle's only comfort is Chad, an eighteen-year-old young man who seems to truly understand her struggles. Arielle and Chad meet beneath the low-hanging branches of what the local community has nick-named the "Hanging Tree". An ancient and majestic landmark, it has long been rumored that the tree is haunted by ghosts. These ghosts span various centuries and vary wildly in age, but each one of them has one thing in common: their deaths are all somehow connected to the tree itself. As Arielle and Chad commiserate over their current situation and their precarious nature of their future, the spectral inhabitants of the Hanging Tree witness their conversation. One by one,the ghosts begin reminiscing about their own lives-and deaths- as they examine the inner demons with which their human forms long struggled. 

I was contacted about the possibility of reviewing this book and though I have a HUGE back log of reviews and review books to do, I loved the synopsis so much that I said yes. It arrived this morning and, well. I've finished it. 

I haven't read many novellas before so I was surprised that the story kicked in immediately and was none stop until the very last word. The story is told from a few different perspectives which added to the suspense of the story and it pushed me to read quicker. The Hanging Tree was suitable creepy in places and I loved that even though the story was constantly moving forward, nothing was revealed until the end. It was great to see how all of the characters and their stories were woven together.

The Hanging Tree is less than a hundred pages long but it is packed full of intrigue and suspense. There is definitely enough material here for a full length book but I loved that it was such a quick and wonderful read! Cash is an author to look out for. He currently has two full length novels available and I hope to be able to check them out in the future!

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