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The Space Between Trees Hardcover


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 280 pages
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books; 1 edition (June 23, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0811871754
  • ISBN-13: 978-0811871754
  • Product Dimensions: 8.2 x 5.7 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (39 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,317,064 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 8 Up—Sixteen-year-old Evie is an outsider with a vivid imagination. She makes up stories for herself and others to make life in her small Midwestern town tolerable. When a childhood friend, Zabet McCabe, is murdered, Evie is thrust into a story beyond her wildest imaginings. Her little habitual deceptions, usually so harmless, get her entangled with grieving Mr. McCabe and Zabet's emotionally unstable and reckless best friend, Hadley Smith. Hadley is obsessed with finding Zabet's killer, and Evie lets herself get dragged into her increasingly paranoid and dangerous investigation. This dark and suspenseful coming-of-age story builds steadily to a violent climax. Evie is a skillful storyteller, perceptive and thoughtful, with a dry sense of humor. She is especially sensitive to disingenuousness in others, particularly in her mother, with whom she has an emotionally distant relationship. As a result, she fixates on the only genuine person in her life: taciturn Jonah Luks, on whom she has an unrequited crush. Evie adds beauty and excitement to the mundane with her fantasies, but only grows as a person when she faces reality and reaches out to the people around her. Readers who have ever felt like they don't fit in will find it easy to empathize with the teen's struggle to connect to others, and anyone can relate to the disillusionment that comes with growing up.—Erin Carrillo, formerly at Alachua County Library District, Gainesville, FL
(c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Always on the social fringes, Evie’s early Sunday paper route puts her at the scene of a disturbing crime. When the murder victim turns out to be a childhood friend, Evie’s crush on Jonah (who found the body) and her uneasy friendship with Hadley take on an eerie quality. Drawn into the search for the murderer almost unwillingly, Evie simultaneously moves quickly into adulthood, facing complex struggles and fears. This debut novel will appeal to fans of Gail Giles’ What Happened to Cass McBride? (2006) or Peter Abrahams’ Reality Check (2009). A good option for reluctant readers, this thrilling story shows many instances of lyrical language, and the pacing is pitch-perfect. Evie’s isolation from her peers is a little hard to swallow, and her naïveté at a college party is a stretch for a 16-year-old, but for some readers, that may make her character that much more appealing. The less-than-clean ending may frustrate some but is a realistic touch. Grades 8-12. --Melissa Moore

More About the Author

Katie Williams was born and raised in mid-Michigan. She earned her BA in English from University of Michigan and her MFA in Creative Writing from the Michener Center for Writers at University of Texas in Austin. She currently lives, writes, and teaches in San Francisco.

You can find Katie's short stories in such publications as Agni, American Short Fiction, The Atlantic, Best American Fantasy 3, Prairie Schooner, Subtropics, and others. The Space Between Trees, published by in May 2010 by Chronicle Books, is her first novel.

You can find Katie at www.katiewilliamsbooks.com

Customer Reviews

The writing at the sentence level is breathtakingly beautiful (and consistently so), and the characters are rich and nuanced and authentic.
Stephanie DeLuca
I found it difficult to like Evie; she cares about very little and seems to not understand the meaning of friendship, and her awkwardness is not endearing at all.
Rachael Stein
I will just say that after finishing the book I feel like there was absolutely no point to the story at all, and that it was crammed with plot holes.
EAO

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Heather D. Gallay VINE VOICE on August 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover Vine Customer Review of Free Product ( What's this? )
I ended up liking this book a lot more than I thought I would at first, and I believe that's because the author (accidentally? purposely?) changed the general personality of her protagonist after the first few chapters.

At first, Evie seemed like such a child, that I kept having to remind myself that this was a teenager into whose head I was peeking. But after the incident that shapes the book's overall plot, Evie normalizes, and instead of the socially inept weirdo she seemed at the start, she comes off more as a shy, thoughtful young woman -- and that made it much easier to get behind her.

The Space Between Trees isn't so much a murder mystery, as a story about identity and grief and adolescence. I found myself quite wrapped up in the story, and while this wasn't a perfect tale, it was definitely an interesting and engaging one. Recommended.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful By sandyd on July 23, 2010
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is my first Amazon book review. I wanted everyone to know about this great new author. The book is labeled 'young adult' but it is such a well-written, tightly paced story that those of us past 'young' can not only enjoy the story, but be drawn into a world we left years ago. The characters are unique - two very different teenage girls, a young male college dropout, students. The various parents are very realistic; caught up in their own concerns and missing the needs of their children at times. You can tell they are making it up as they go, but then, don't we all. One set of parents does not seem to learn any lessons or grow, but that happens in real life also.
The mystery at the heart of this book, the death of a young girl, sets off events that change the lives of a number of people. No one is the hero here, and no one 'solves' the mystery through brilliant sleuthing. They just do the best they can to make sense of what happened and to deal with it. But at the end there are mercies given and received, and they are important in the lives of these somewhat troubled people.
I very much look forward to Katie Williams' next book.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B-Ann Hall on February 19, 2012
Format: Hardcover
This is a beautifully written, suspenseful youth- market novel whose strengths lie in its engaging voice and a plot that dramatizes certain adolescent-- and adult-- tendencies to unrealism. The plot begins with the narrator- character's habit of making up stories; the discovery of a corpse cranks up the tension, but this book is not a conventional murder mystery. Although two characters' psychologically believable need to "do something" after a shocking crime gives the action the momentum and pace of a mystery, readers expecting the easy reassurance of a whodunit resolution will be surprised. Instead, the novel creates a disturbing confrontation between characters' imagination and the reality of its consequences, and an opportunity for its teen narrator to grow.

A novel whose youth- fiction "lesson" respects the reader.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By E. Kristin Anderson on December 23, 2011
Format: Hardcover
What struck me the most about Katie Williams` debut novel is the voice. Evie is a sixteen year old girl who reads like she's much younger -- she's awkward and naive. She doesn't have friends, though she sits with a group of girls she calls The Whisperers at lunch. She makes up stories to tell them and the lies and exaggerations roll of her tongue like truths. And it's this voice that makes THE SPACE BETWEEN TREES so magical. The voice of a girl who wants so badly to be a part of things that she lies to the father of the girl found dead in the woods. She accidentally convinces Zabet McCabe's father that she was her best friend. And when the real best friend, Hadley, finds out, she at first toys with Evie, makes her squirm, knowing that she hasn't known Zabet since they were little. Because Evie is a busser who lives on the outskirts of town in a rental home. And even though Hadley is one of the "bad girls" at school, she lives in the nice neighborhood of Hokepe Woods, walks or drives to school, and never has to worry about money.

But it's not long before Hadley and Evie develop a strange sort of friendship. Hadley convinces Evie to flirt with her crush Jonah, the college drop-out who found the body, during her morning paper route, while Jonah is out patrolling for dead animals in the trees outside Hokepe Woods. Hadley wants Evie to find the exact spot where Zabet's body was found. She wants to look for clues, to solve the murder, find out who killed the girl they had in common. And while Evie knows that Hadley isn't exactly a good friend, she agrees to almost everything. Evie follows along and helps Hadley write suspect lists and go looking in places that two teenage girls shouldn't be, because the intrigue is too much to bear for her, too.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Stephanie DeLuca on December 19, 2010
Format: Hardcover
I know you can't judge a book by its cover, but the beautiful, unusual, memorable cover of THE SPACE BETWEEN TREES is a fitting introduction for what's inside. This is a gorgeous novel, from beginning to end. The writing at the sentence level is breathtakingly beautiful (and consistently so), and the characters are rich and nuanced and authentic. And then, on top of all that, the story itself is compelling and engaging...I was drawn into this fictional world from the first page and couldn't pull myself away. I love to find novels that combine lush, rich prose with a brisk, sharp story, so I'm excited to have found this one. Evie is so real to me that I can't think of her as a character any longer. Her voice is fresh and vivid and achingly raw at times. I feel for her and feel connected to her. This is the kind of book I will reread (something I rarely do). I can't wait to see what this author comes up with next.
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