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Extended Audio Sample The Wishing Trees Audiobook, by John Shors Click for printable size audiobook cover
3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 3.00 (510 ratings) (rate this audio book) Author: John Shors Narrator: Jefferson Mays Publisher: Recorded Books, LLC Format: Unabridged Audiobook Delivery: Instant Download Audio Length: Release Date: January 2013 ISBN: 9781449867829
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Almost a year after the death of his wife, former high-tech executive Ian finds a letter that will change his life. It contains Kate’s final wish—a plea for him to take their ten-year-old daughter, Mattie, on a trip across Asia, through the countries they had always planned to visit.

Eager to honor the woman they loved, Ian and Mattie embark on an epic journey. They leave notes to Kate in “wishing trees,” encountering miracles large and small along the way. As they celebrate what Kate meant to them, they begin to find their way back to each other, discovering that healing is possible and that love endures—lessons that Kate hoped to show them all along.

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Quotes & Awards

  • “John Shors’ The Wishing Tree is an affecting and sensitively rendered study of grief and loss, the healing power of artistic expression, and the life- altering rewards of travel to distant lands. I was deeply moved by this poignant and life-affirming novel.”

    Wally Lamb, New York Times bestselling author

  • “A poignant novel.”

    National Geographic Traveler

  • “Beautifully written, The Wishing Trees is a fascinating tale of a father and daughter on a spiritual and emotional journey–where they find love and forgiveness in the most unfamiliar but amazing places. The trials and triumphs of these characters serve to paint an emotionally resonant picture of their voyage as they’re able to miraculously transform their shared sorrow into acts of hope, kindness, and affection.”

    Mahbod Seraji, author of Rooftops of Tehran

  • “An interesting look at grief…[Shors’] fans will appreciate the saga of a father and daughter struggling with the death of the loved one who made them a family.”

    Midwest Book Review

  • “A moving, emotional story about coping and coming to terms with loss. Anyone who has lost a loved one will relate to this poignant novel.”

    Booklist

  • “John Shors has made himself a reputation for recreating exotic landscapes that surround heartwarming stories with captivating details. The Wishing Trees is no exception, as he replaces what might be a standard tale of recovery from loss with an alluring travelogue, filled with colorful details of these chromatic countries.”

    BookPage

Listener Opinions

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kris | 2/14/2014

    " This was a really enjoyable story. Great character development and lots of touching moments between father and daughter. My only complaint is that it tied up a bit too neatly at the end, making it a bit hard to believe, but I did enjoy the journey getting there. I plan to read others by this author. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah | 2/12/2014

    " This is one of my all-time FAVORITE books!!!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Jamie | 2/11/2014

    " Great book with a great ending. Loved it. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Ginger | 2/10/2014

    " I loved Beneath a Marble Sky by John Shors and saw at the Borders 70% off closing sale and grabbed it. I read it in 2 days. It is an emotional read. It's a story of a father/daughter who have lost their wife/mother. The mother is guiding them even after her death via last wishes and trips to different countries. Each time Ian and Mattie read one of the messages their reaction was different - excitement, loneliness, desperation, frustration. I felt like I was grieving for Kate too. I'm a traveler and loved exploring the countries with them. Sometimes the political aspects of each country was a bit forced, but overall a good read. Get out your kleenex box...I was crying on page 12. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Marie | 2/3/2014

    " This was a sad book, but also many happy parts with a happy ending. When Ian's wife died, she left him a letter stating that she wanted him to take their 10 year old daughter on an extended trip through the Far and Middle East countries to show her what they had seen and experienced during the time they were teaching English in Japan when they met and married and traveled. Their daughter was a gifted artist and she sketched the things she saw, and also she left notes for her deceased mother in certain Wishing Trees throughout their travels. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Melissa | 1/30/2014

    " I was so disappointed...I enjoyed Beneath a Marble sky so much...this was an akward read for me - the dialog between father and daughter seemed unnatural and the voice of a ten year old girl was not at all convincing. It had all the elements I might enjoy --- travel, family and healing but it became so tedious for me that I skimmed to the end and was simply glad to be done with it. Two stars might be generous. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Candace | 1/29/2014

    " I really loved this book! This book is about a father and daughter that are desperately trying to deal with the loss of his wife, and her mother. On the mother's death bed she wrote letters to her family asking them to do something very special for her. To go on the trip across Asia that they had planned to take all together. This is very difficult for them as the father-daughter team after a year is still feeling like her death just happened. Her thought is through this journey they will find a way to go on without her, and happily. It is a truly moving story! One thing I really liked about it is for some of the more uncomfortable parts there was little detail, making this a very good read for teens as well. Beware ~ this is a tear-jerker almost from start to finish. The book ends on a very good note. I positively loved it and I think you would too! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Miranda Reller | 1/19/2014

    " Moving, inspiring, and poignant! ! ! "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Martha | 1/2/2014

    " As a mother this was a difficult, yet moving novel to read. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Teresa | 12/15/2013

    " I really enjoyed this book. It was refreshing to read a book that captivated me and had a good message. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amber Lamb | 8/1/2013

    " Great story, wonderful description of place. Beautiful concept. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Punch | 7/10/2012

    " Another wonderful story from one of my all-time favorites. Never am I disappointed when I read a John Shors novel. Never. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Amanda | 12/31/2011

    " A sad but beautiful story about a widow and his daughter travelling around Asia together after losing their wife/mum - who sent them on this incredible journey after she died and with letters to each of them to open on their arrival in each country. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Maryann | 10/11/2011

    " Great premise of a father and 10 year old daughter traveling Asia. Too much grief, too clean an ending for 5 stars. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Angel | 9/12/2011

    " I loved this book. Made me want to be a better parent. Also loved the real life feel of travel through countries like Thailand, Japan, Katmandu etc. A really good read! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Christy | 7/8/2011

    " I enjoyed travelling around Asia in this book. The descriptions of the places they visit are amazing. The story is a tearjerker. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Paula | 5/12/2011

    " Father and young daughter grieving the loss of their spouse/mother undertake an extended physical, emotional and spiritual journey to southern asia. A beautiful book. "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Sarah | 4/27/2011

    " This is one of my all-time FAVORITE books!!!! "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Kristi | 4/11/2011

    " It took me a little while to get into this book but I did enjoy it in the end. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Rosemary | 3/2/2011

    " Beautiful story. It was sad and uplifting all at the same time. I wanted the 2 major characters to be happy. They were both grieving but I do think the future looked bright for them. Wish we could see what their lives evolved into. "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karla | 2/21/2011

    " A lovely story about a man and his daughter who follow his late wife's wish for them to travel to places they once visited. A good travel story as well as one about the relationships between the man and woman and well as between parent and child. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Robyn | 1/25/2011

    " I thought the relationship between Ian/ Mattie was a bit too much ~ too gooey. I loved the character of Rupee tho! He was fun. "

  • 2 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 52 out of 5 Brooks | 1/12/2011

    " Didn't finish. Good story concept but was way too slow! "

  • 5 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 55 out of 5 Libby | 1/12/2011

    " Excellant.moves quickly. A very heartwarming story
    "

  • 4 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 54 out of 5 Karen | 12/17/2010

    " A father/daughter travel story ...finding a way back to life after Mother's death. A gifted writer portraying study of working through grief. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Randi | 12/10/2010

    " This book really showed the love of a father and daughter. "

  • 3 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 53 out of 5 Linda | 12/5/2010

    " While I liked this book and learned a good deal from the travels of the characters, it got to be a bit too saccharine for my taste. "

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About the Author
Author John Shors

John Shors is an international bestselling author whose work has won numerous awards and been translated into twenty-six languages. He traveled extensively throughout Asia after graduating from Colorado College in 1991, living for several years in Japan, where he taught English, and then trekking across the continent, visiting ten countries and climbing the Himalayas. More recently he worked as a newspaper reporter in his hometown, Des Moines, Iowa, before entering public relations and moving to Boulder, Colorado. John encourages reader feedback and can be easily reached via his website at johnshors.com.

About the Narrator

Jefferson Mays has won two AudioFile Earphones Awards for his audio narrations. He is also an award-winning theater and film actor. In 2004 he won a Tony Award, a Drama Desk Award, an Obie Award, and a Theatre World Award for his solo Broadway performance in I Am My Own Wife, a Pulitzer Prize–winning play by Doug Wright. He holds a BA from Yale College and an MFA from University of California–San Diego.