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Publisher's Summary

An award-winning writer makes her debut with this mesmerizing must-listen in the spirit of Everything I Never Told You and Olive Kitteridge.

Out for a hike one scorching afternoon in Sycamore, Arizona, a newcomer to town stumbles across what appear to be human remains embedded in the wall of a dry desert ravine. As news of the discovery makes its way around town, Sycamore's longtime residents fear the bones may belong to Jess Winters, the teenage girl who disappeared suddenly some 18 years earlier, an unsolved mystery that has soaked into the porous rock of the town and haunted it ever since. In the days it takes the authorities to make an identification, the residents rekindle stories, rumors, and recollections both painful and poignant as they revisit Jess' troubled history. In resurrecting the past, the people of Sycamore will find clarity, unexpected possibility, and a way forward for their lives.

Skillfully interweaving multiple points of view, Bryn Chancellor knowingly maps the bloodlines of a community and the indelible characters at its heart - most notably Jess Winters, a thoughtful, promising adolescent poised on the threshold of adulthood. Evocative and atmospheric, Sycamore is a coming-of-age story, a mystery, and a moving exploration of the elemental forces that drive human nature - desire, loneliness, grief, love, forgiveness, and hope - as witnessed through the inhabitants of one small Arizona town.

©2017 Bryn Chancellor (P)2017 HarperCollins Publishers

Critic Reviews

"In this masterful performance, Bryn Chancellor explores the loss around which an entire community has calcified with humanity and wisdom. Chancellor digs deep in these pages, unearthing broken hearts, secrets, betrayals, passion and - most impressively - grace. What a joy to find a book that is both propulsive and perfectly composed." (Cynthia D'Aprix Sweeney, author of The Nest)

What members say

Average Customer Ratings

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  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Performance
    5 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Excellent!

This book stands out among the many I listen to every week. Well told and unfolds as a story should - giving each character a full descriptive part. I hope we see more from this author

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars

Complex and thought-provoking

Gripping study of characters and their miscommunications or missed communications. Complex, probing, revealing how easily we can misconstrue a situation and react instead of listening.

5 of 5 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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Excellent!

Great story, characters and narration!
I enjoyed it tremendously!
LISTEN! You won't be disappointed!
Enjoy,

4 of 4 people found this review helpful

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    5 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    5 out of 5 stars

Moving story, beautifully written

Beautifully written, a character-driven narrative that shifts between 1991 and 2009. The effect of an unsolved disappearance in a small community is told through the POV of several people. It is both heartbreaking and cathartic. A wonderful book.

9 of 10 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    4 out of 5 stars
  • Story
    4 out of 5 stars

Good book.

Very good book. Dramas of a small town life. Good listening for the office. Enjoyed it.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

  • Overall
    4 out of 5 stars
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    5 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Good story but too drawn out

This is a good story, but there are so many unnecessary details and characters that it becomes bogged down. After the listener discovers what happened to Jess, the missing teenager, there is still an hour of narrative left. In that time, the lives of the long character list are wrapped up. The performance is great.

1 of 1 people found this review helpful

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    2 out of 5 stars
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    1 out of 5 stars
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    3 out of 5 stars

Ok story, disliked narration

The story got good at the end (like, the last 10%). Before that, the writing was overwrought and dragged on. I think this may have been a book that would have been better not to listen to because the narration was...not my favorite. It was overly dramatic and I disliked how the accents were done. It took me months to get through this.

2 of 4 people found this review helpful