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Tree of Lives – a haunting memoir

Author: Elizabeth Garden

What is it about oppression that is not only perpetuated throughout a lifetime, but is passed down like grandmother’s silver? Now that she was a grandmother, Ruth Thompson had a wincing awareness of the false history rewritten by her oppressors and believed by their kids and this bothered her.

Growing up, the Thompson family’s focus was solely on Mr. Thompson. And Mr. Thompson had a dark secret that affected everyone around him, which made them all feel as if they were living under the shadow of a teetering, inevitable anvil.

Ruth wasn’t surprised to uncover the secret about the mass murderer in the family. The older she got the more her family’s dysfunction made perfect sense. She was on her fourth marriage, after all. It was bad enough that so many of her cousins had died, but the fact that their existence was forever forgotten also bothered her.

Based on actual events, Tree of Lives is the memoir of a survivor named Ruth, an unconventional commercial artist and her murderous great uncle Raymond. He is a ghost with a tragic secret who desperately wants to make amends. She is the only one willing to help, but first she needs to overcome a lifetime of heartbreaking turns.


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