By Barbara Delinsky
(Anchor, Mass Market Paperback, 9780307476098, 432pp.)
Publication Date: October 27, 2009
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An unforgettable novel about family, race, and the choices people make in times of crisis.
Dana Clarke has just given birth to her first child. The little girl is lovely but no one can help noticing how little she resembles her parents. Dana's husband, among others, suspects that she may have had an affair. In order to put the rumors and speculation to rest, Dana has to delve deep into her past and her husband's heritage to unearth some uncomfortable secrets. Can her marriage survive what she finds out?
Barbara Delinsky is a New York Times bestselling author with more than thirty million copies of her books in print. She lives with her family in New
1. What were your initial theories about Lizzie's ancestors? Did you ever doubt Dana's fidelity?
“The old and illustrious New England Clarke family has a new member and she is not what the family envisioned. Elizabeth Clarke, a beautiful daughter born to Hugh and Dana, possesses definite African-American traits, leaving the parents puzzled and the extended Clarke family scandalized. Now, on what should be a joyous occasion, the birth of their first child, Hugh and Dana are struggling with issues of race, family, and trust. Delinsky often writes with insight about complex family matters, and here adds thought-provoking concerns about race in America to the mix in a novel that will stir debate and inspire self-examination.”
“Delinsky’s family saga explores how a white, upper-middle-class New England couple would react if the wife gave birth to an African-American baby. Delinsky vigorously takes on thorny racial assumptions and admirably allows her characters to acknowledge and correct their biases. Fail-safe delivery of an issues-packed story perfect for reading groups.”
“When Dana and Hugh Clarke’s baby is born into their wealthy, white New England community, the baby’s unmistakably African-American features puzzle her thoroughly Anglo-looking parents. By the time the Clarkes have uncovered the tangled roots of their family trees, more than one skeleton has been unearthed, and the couple’s relationship – not to mention their family loyalty – has been severely tested. Delinsky smoothly challenges characters and readers alike to confront their hidden hypocrisies [while getting] the political and personal dynamics just right.”
“Loyal readers who have followed Barbara Delinsky’s writing for many years will not be surprised at the depth of characterization in FAMILY TREE. Delinsky’s latest is well suited for fans of the serious themed books of Jodi Picoult, Anita Shreve, and Jacquelyn Mitchard. Full of complex and fascinating family dynamics as its characters are forced to come to terms with issues such as faith, race and loyalty, FAMILY TREE is thought-provoking and memorable. After 26 years of publishing and 19 New York Times bestsellers, Delinsky will be ‘discovered’ by a new generation of readers.”
“Family Tree is warm, rich, textured, and impossible to put down.”
“Delinsky delves deeper into the human heart and spirit with each new novel.”