Local author, Jon Cohen, gave a wonderful talk about the process of writing his new novel, Harry’s Trees, at the Inn in Swarthmore’s bookstore on Saturday. He kept the standing-room-only crowd laughing as he demonstrated his bag of writerly magician’s tricks, used to lure in a reader and keep them helplessly hooked.
Cohen’s unique brand of heartfelt, funny fiction has featured Swarthmore-like towns before (check out The Man in the Window and Max Lakeman and the Beautiful Stranger for a taste!) Harry’s Trees, an Amazon Top Ten Editorial Pick in the Literature & Fiction category, is set in the Appalachians and features a fantastic cast of characters that includes a young widower and a feisty librarian.
Cohen’s brief reading from the novel had us all spellbound and clamoring for more. (Spoiler alert: The writerly tricks definitely worked on us even though he had revealed them in advance!) The line for signed hardbacks stretched out the door of the bookstore and into the lobby.
Want to see what all the fuss is about? Snag your copy of the book at your local bookstore or download an e-copy at any online vendor. Here’s the blurb:
When you climb a tree, the first thing you do is to hold on tight…
Thirty-four-year-old Harry Crane works as an analyst for the US Forest Service. When his wife dies suddenly, he is unable to cope. Leaving his job and his old life behind, Harry makes his way to the remote woods of northeastern Pennsylvania’s Endless Mountains, determined to lose himself. But fate intervenes in the form of a fiercely determined young girl named Oriana. She and her mother, Amanda, are struggling to pick up the pieces from their own tragedy—Amanda stoically holding it together while Oriana roams the forest searching for answers. And in Oriana’s magical, willful mind, she believes that Harry is the key to righting her world.
Now it’s time for Harry to let go…
After taking up residence in the woods behind Amanda’s house, Harry reluctantly agrees to help Oriana in a ludicrous scheme to escape his tragic past. In so doing, the unlikeliest of elements—a wolf, a stash of gold coins, a fairy tale called The Grum’s Ledger and a wise old librarian named Olive—come together to create a golden adventure that will fulfill Oriana’s wildest dreams and open Harry’s heart to a whole new life.
Harry’s Trees is an uplifting story about the redeeming power of friendship and love and the magic to be found in life’s most surprising adventures.
Learn more about the book, read reviews or find out where to grab your copy here: