Book Review by M.Amber Conrad
The Courage Tree, by Diane Chamberlain
This is a story about hope, love, loss, and everything we can possibly learn in life. It begins with an actress, Zoe, who is getting up in her age and is no longer on the 'hot' list in Hollywood. She is tempting fate after the death of her husband and is trying to save her daughter in prison. She has a plan.
Chapter two begins with a family. Joe, Janine, and their daughter Sophie. Joe and Janine pose a united front for their very ill daughter, who has a special type of kidney disease. Sophie just wants to be like other kids. Because of a medical treatment that Joe does not trust, Sophie has been feeling better. Janine is excited that Sophie is feeling fine and allows her to go to a Girl Scouts Camp.
Sophie does not make it back home.
The story follows our characters with such raw honesty, emotion, and rivalry. Joe and Janine have not been together in three years. There is a mysterious Lucas in Janine's life. And Joe has Paula. And Sophie has not been found.
In the woods, Zoe is hiding out, awaiting for her daughter Marti to find her there, when she encounters a little girl. Sophie is very lost and scared and knows that she needs her medical treatment. It is an emotional battle for Zoe, who does not want to be seen ever again.
Will Sophie make it out alive?
This story grips at your heart, throws it around, and puts it back in swelling with love, frustration, and fear. Diane Chamberlain's characters are true to human form, and it's impossible to put the book down. The ending will leave you yearning for so much more.