What a riveting first chapter! Donny Bailey Seagraves had me hooked from the beginning with her debut novel about an eleven year-old boy named Daniel. In Gone From These Woods, Daniel is rabbit hunting with his uncle in the woods near his home. Daniel is not interested in shooting a rabbit. He is simply going hunting in order to spend time with his favorite uncle.
Tragically, a hunting accident claims Uncle Clay's life. Daniel is devastated and cannot overcome his guilt.
"Mom tries to hold the family together. Mrs. Hardy, Daniel’s guidance counselor, tries to help Daniel after he loses his role model and best friend. Daniel’s alcoholic father just makes the situation worse. The memory of that cold morning will stay with Daniel forever. But somehow, he must find a way to go on . . . for Uncle Clay . . . and most of all, for himself." (from Amazon)
After reading the first chapter, I was blown away...but I was also asking myself the question, "Now what?" Was I going to wade through the next one hundred pages growing tiresome of hearing about Daniel's feelings of guilt?
I need not have been worried. Not only did the author develop the conflict between Daniel and his father but the author also created an unexpected twist for Daniel himself.
Make sure you read the appendix which provides statistics on gun violence and a list of sources to contact for more information.
I would highly recommend this to readers who enjoy the outdoors, who enjoy hunting, who are interested in reading a novel that explores a character's deepest emotions. This is one not to be missed.
(Click HERE to view the author's extensive website.)
Mrs. T :)
P.S. Reading is like breathing chocolate air!