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Extended Audio Sample The Sandalwood Tree: A Novel Audiobook, by Elle Newmark Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (1,072 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: Elle Newmark Narrator: Justine Eyre Publisher: Tantor Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: April 2011 ISBN: 9781452671475
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In 1947, American historian and World War II veteran Martin Mitchell wins a Fulbright Fellowship to document the end of British rule in India. His wife, Evie, convinces him to take her and their young son along, hoping a shared adventure will mend their marriage, which has been strained by war. But other places, other wars. Martin and Evie find themselves stranded in a colonial bungalow in the Himalayas due to violence surrounding the partition of India between Hindus and Muslims. In that house, hidden behind a brick wall, Evie discovers a packet of old letters, which tell a strange and compelling story of love and war involving two young Englishwomen who lived in the same house in 1857. Drawn to their story, Evie embarks on a mission to piece together her Victorian mystery. Her search leads her through the bazaars and temples of India and the dying society of the British Raj. Along the way, Martin's dark secret is exposed, unleashing a new wedge between the couple. As India struggles toward independence, Evie struggles to save her marriage, pursuing her Victorian ghosts for answers. Bursting with lavish detail and vivid imagery of Calcutta and beyond, The Sandalwood Tree is a powerful story about betrayal, forgiveness, fate, and love. Download and start listening now!

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Quotes & Awards

  • Will appeal to [listeners] who enjoy Anita Desai, Keith Heller, and perhaps even Anita Shreve. Library Journal
  • “Elle Newark beautifully captures the sights, smells and sounds of India on the cusp of change, all the while spinning a richly layered tale.”

    Cathy Buchanan, New York Times bestselling author of The Day the Falls Stood Still

  • “Newmark escalates tension subtly, weaving two intricate stories together and building a narrative that I could not put down. The characters linger long after the final page.”

    Brunonia Barry, New York Times bestseeling author of The Lace Reader

  • “Newmark’s The Sandalwood Tree is a finely nuanced tale of the enchantment of India for three women—a century apart—caught in the midst of two struggles for independence from the British Raj. The research is meticulous, the details exquisite, the story one of love, betrayal…and love again. The Sandalwood Tree is a heart-warming, enlightening, and mesmerizing read.”

    Indu Sundaresan, author of The Twentieth Wife

Listener Opinions

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Janet | 2/12/2014

    " About halfway through, I thought, "this book is full of unhappy people". But it was interesting enough to read through to the end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Liz | 1/20/2014

    " This was an interesting read about a couple and their son that head to India for his doctorate work, right at the time of Partition. She find some old letters and journals which lead her on a search to learn more, so it jumps back in time to the 1850's. I liked it, but the author could have left out some of the weird stuff that didn't really add to the story. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Dayne | 1/14/2014

    " Parallel stories about 1947 and 1857 in India. Very interesting time in Indian history. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Autumn | 1/2/2014

    " The story is fabulous and compelling, it is full of themes but never felt like too much. I like the characters as well as the author's voice. Sometimes I felt events and conversations were too predictable and/or dramatic and the author repeated ideas or thoughts sometimes which was unnecessary-that's my only complaint. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Patty | 12/28/2013

    " Fantastic! I loved this storyfrom the first page and wish it could have gone on. I tryto save my five star ratings for only the best. I'd give this book six stars if I could! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristine | 12/22/2013

    " A book I never would have heard of without the Borders going out of business sale. So sad to read of the author's death. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Pat | 11/18/2013

    " Very good book - I would like to read her other books. Great discussion at Book Club too. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Valerie | 10/4/2013

    " Would like to give it 3.5 stars. The story is solid and I've read more descriptive books on India. I did like the main character. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Linda | 9/3/2013

    " Give this one a 4.5. Great from beginning to end. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Jude Grebeldinger | 8/23/2013

    " I enjoyed reading this lighthearted book while on a cruise. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Mslogar | 7/25/2013

    " A beautifully written story with lush details and imagery-- loved that the setting was in India! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Annie | 7/14/2013

    " Absolutely loved this one, a compelling read in every way with two strong linked stories and full of the sights, smells and sounds of India. Made all the better by the postscript from the author and the fascinating interview transcript. So sad there will be no more. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Carleen | 6/3/2013

    " Light, but engaging novel that weaves two time periods of Indian history together. Nice little history lesson and love stories. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Lesley | 3/4/2013

    " I enjoyed the book more for the topic than anything. I've wanted to read more about Partition and this was an enjoyable way to do it. I liked the description of India, the land, the people. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Nancy Santoski | 10/13/2012

    " Enjoyed this book very much, the shifting story lines between post WWII and 1856 in India were well done. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Claire | 5/2/2012

    " Historical fiction that includes two dangerous periods in India's past and ties them together beautifully. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kevin | 5/24/2011

    " A suspenseful plot that takes place in India in both 1947 and in the 1800s. The storyline shifts back and forth thyroid the discovery of letters and pictures. A bit too convenient at times but does create suspense. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Lisa | 5/23/2011

    " A well intertwined book. A short read, but well written with basically two stories. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Susan | 5/20/2011

    " A little fluffy, but still entertaining... "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Anu | 5/19/2011

    " tries to capture a very large time but focusing on a small part of the world and capturing the emotions of a small family. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Tamara | 5/6/2011

    " this was a wonderful premise and could have made an epic long novel, but instead it is closer to a novella and never really examines any of the interesting facets of the story. very disappointing.. "

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About the Author

Elle Newmarkborn Ellen Ferrero, is the acclaimed, award-winning author who finds inspiration for her books from her travels. She lives and works in the hills north of San Diego but grew up in her fathers Italian farming village and Chicago.

About the Narrator

Justine Eyre is a classically trained actress who has narrated dozens of audiobooks and has a prestigious Audie Award and two AudioFile Earphones Awards under her belt. Eyre is multilingual and known for her great facility with accents. She has appeared on stage, with leading roles in King Lear and The Crucible, and has had starring roles in four films on the indie circuit. Her recent television credits include Two and a Half Men and Mad Men.