Cover Image: The Promise Tree

The Promise Tree

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Member Reviews

I enjoyed this book, a little whimsical and a lot engaging, Some parts drag on a little but that is ok, a nice story told with love and great fantasy.

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This was a good book to curl up with over the winter. It had a bit of a folklore feel to it which I enjoyed. The characters were loveable once you got to know them. It was a bit of a slow-paced book but overall enjoyable.

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A very enjoyable romantic fantasy. I loved the characters and the setting.
Many thanks to Harpercollins UK and to Netgalley for providing me with a galley in exchange for my honest opinion.

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Eighteen-year-old Edwin lives with his grandfather – a man who appears not to like his grandson, though the reasons are unclear. Haunted by memories of a mysterious girl and a sycamore tree, Edwin is grateful when the old man allows him to escape to Yorkshire to stay with an aunt. On his return, Edwin seeks out the girl and the tree and so begins a strange relationship…

This is the first book I’ve read by this author, and it has an intriguing premise – a mysterious woman and an equally mysterious tree that influences the life of the hero, Edwin. The woman and the tree are somehow inextricably linked, with her appearance coinciding with the changing of the seasons. Over the years, Edwin becomes entangled in a strange relationship that challenges his own relationship with his grandfather.

The author has a talent for language and her descriptions of nature and the seasons are at times quite lovely. Having said that, the story itself felt a little slow—spanning as it does, most of the 20th century—and I found myself flicking ahead in the book to find out what happened next. I did enjoy the final section, which surprised me (in a nice way) and left me with a nice warm feeling inside.

A thoughtful and gentle read

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The Promise Tree tells an epic love story that, between highs and lows, lasts almost a century.

Since a young age Edwin found some joy and comfort meeting a girl near the Sycamore tree that grew on his family's land. The happy times spent with the girl were in stark contrast with the times spent with his strict, cold grandfather. Their weird relationship overcomes the hardles of separation, distance, and the war, but will it survive the ginormous difference between their worlds?

The characters are well depicted, and well developped. It was a pleasure to see Edwin's growth from a child to a young man, his time serving during WWI was especially touching but it's essential to his full maturity. I really loved the ending, it was beautifully written.

Elisabeth J. Hobbes wrote a good fantasy historical romance, it was believable, interesting and engaging.

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The Promise Tree was a wonderful story right from the very beginning. It was one that instantly grabbed my attention with an intriguing premise. Let’s just say it was so easy to become immersed in not only the story but the characters themselves.

The plot itself moved at a lovely pace and I loved the mix of folklore and mythology. I have a soft spot for any book that features any aspect of that. The way the author wrote this book produced such an interesting combination and it worked so well. I thought the romance was beautifully written and had an extra special heart warming touch. Their connection was built up perfectly with a friendship that blossoms into something much more. I really enjoyed getting to know the characters. Seeing them grow and change but ultimately still deeply connected even when they were apart.

The different time periods also brought so much to the story as we see the characters experiences from youth right through different time periods. I loved my time with this book and the way it felt like a true escape from everyday life. The fantasy, romance and vivid storytelling all combined to make The Promise Tree a real delight to read.

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Orphan Edwin Hope is dared to climb a tree. He does, falls and is sent away. His relationship with the tree has begun...
The Promise Tree is a mix of history, fantasy, myth and romance.
Young Edwin meets a young girl in the branches of the sycamore tree on his family's estate. It begins a relationship that lasts a lifetime. The girl is a dryad or tree goddess, or nymph. Edwin names her Drusilla and their friendship, love and passion develop over the years.
The exact description or explanation of Drusilla's existence is never clearly defined. This made me feel a little disappointed as I like clarity. Myths and legends as well as the supernatural play an important role but this didn't particularly interest me because I didn't fully understand it.
I really enjoyed the historical aspects of the book. The horrors of the WW1 trenches felt so authentic and emotional. I also liked the changing friendship with Robert Carfax from bully/bullied to respect and secret keeping. The boys become men and are united by their experience of war and unconventional love affairs. The book deals with class and social expectations as well which seemed properly researched and authentic.
Edwin's relationship with his grandfather is desperately sad. Both are grieving and Edwin needs the parental love he has lost. But instead he is rejected and sent away. In the later years, the grandfather's behaviour has not softened. Drusilla offers Edwin the love he craves.The final chapters were sweet about the strength and enduring power of the love between Drusilla and Edwin.
The Promise Tree is a sweet love story with a supernatural element.

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Edwin meets a girl at the sycamore tree on his grandfather’s estate and is drawn to her. He later learns that she is the goddess of the tree but is not sure whether or not to believe her. Edwin has a very strained relationship with his grandfather who runs a mill and will leave it to him in time, though Edwin isn’t sure he wants it. This story takes us through Edwin’s journey with Drusilla the goddess, with whom he falls in love, his grandfather who tries to control his life and other assorted characters. What will Edwin do to get what he truly wants?

I found this book to be a pleasant read but it never really pulled me into the story or made me clamour to know what was going to happen next. It did have a satisfying ending.

Thank you to the publisher and Net Galley for the opportunity to read this ARC.

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"Climb the Witch Tree. Bring back a leaf."

This book is so uniquely clever! Part historical fiction, part magical realism, part quirky romance, it's a perfect autumn read.

I enjoyed that the time period surrounding World War I was so richly drawn. Immersive and powerful imagery, with odd characters I absolutely grew to adore.

Just a leaf.
And a marble.
With a promise.

The first chapter drops in an Alice in Wonderland reference, which definitely caught my interest, and I tumbled down the rabbit hole quite willingly. Highly recommend this adventure!

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On August 9, 1902 the day of King Edwards coronation young Edwin hope was dared by his cousins to climb the big tree in the backyard when he was almost all the way up he saw a little girl she didn’t look like the little girls Edwin knew but he found her interesting all the same before they could have a proper conversation however he fell and broke his arm. after he got his arm casted his grandfather told him the pain of his broken arm would be his punishment for not listening once again too to his governess and that he absolutely must stay away from the tree. Something he didn’t listen to because that same day he went back to the tree to talk to the little girl yet again this is when his grandfather Stephen Bryce sent him to live in Yorkshire with his aunt Madeline Ponches and his cousins Harold and Eleni he would live there for 10 years and when he goes back to his grandfathers at 18 Yorkshire feels more like home than Cheshire does it isn’t long after he arrives that he once again talks to the tree nymph Who is now grown-up. He will eventually give her the name Drusilla throughout their conversations he learns she has had many lovers it is their admiration and affection that feeds her magic in her soul. Edwin is unlike any of her prior acolytes because he is pure and innocent when they meet nor does he want anything from her except her friendship. Edwin is just happy to be around somebody that is happy to be around him he and his grandfather have never had affection between them nor does this grandfather want to speak of Edwin‘s mother or how she died even fighting in world war one doesn’t change his grandfather‘s attitude towards him this is why when his cousins come for Christmas he cannot wait to introduce them to Drusilla but can Drusilla really be a part of Edwin‘s world especially when the gardener Mr. Sykes wants nothing more than to cut the tree down not to mention his grandfather wants him to marry his cousin Eleni. I am doing a terrible job writing a review for this awesome adult retail it is a story to me that started off slow but totally turned into an awesome read! I found Drusillas innocence and ability to love and be kind to everyone so refreshing I loved Edwin‘s relationship with his ex governess Annie that’s wassup an awesome read I want to thank the publisher and NetGalley for my free art copy please forgive any mistakes as I am blind and dictate my review.

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The Promise Tree is a detailed fast paced story that has a slowly revealed plot. The years between 1902-2020 are discussed at random points.

Hobbes has looked at some key facts of the years mentioned, yet doesn't go into too much detail about them. The writing style has long chapters. The plot includes a lot of dialogue...

The character development of The Promise Tree gives the reader a brief background about the characters.

Edwin 1902 young boy of 7. After 3 weeks of pain from a broken arm and bed rest, he is finally summoned to grandfather's study. Edwin's grandfather is extremely displeased with him saying that he will cut down the tree. Edwin promised not to go near it again and is shown what his future holds...

In 1913, Edwin is now 18 years old. He was sent away as a child to live in Yorkshire with his aunt and uncle. He has been sent a letter from his grandfather stating that he should return and take over at the family owned factory, Greete Mill... Edwin has a very strained relationship with his grandfather, often feeling resentment towards him.

Drusilla is the goddess of the sycamore tree. She first appears to Edwin as a graceful young girl...and later when he returns, she appears as a young woman. Drusilla draws strength like a tree, from the soil...she doesn't require love but appreciates veneration above all else.

Overall I feel that The Promise Tree took longer than usual to read, as I struggled to get into a rhythm, it was very slow to get to the point...

I would suggest reading The Promise Tree to people who enjoy reading historical fiction/romance, fantasy and dual timeline novels, as it is a character driven story about nature and one man's devotion...

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The Promise Tree is an unusual book. It's an amalgam of historical fiction and ecological fantasy. Told in a lyrical prose, The Promise Tree is a mythical, otherwordly story that feels timeless. A story of love and hope, of metamorphosis and renewal, both of nature and human beings.

The descriptions of nature and the circle of life are beautifully rendered, as opposed to the ugliness and brutality of war.

#BlogTour with Rachel's Random Resources

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Historical fiction, with more than a hint of fantasy, forms the basis for this evocative story which introduces us to Edwin Hope whose early childhood, spent with his taciturn grandfather, was both unhappy and isolating. When Edwin was just seven years old, his grandfather, in a pique of rage, sends Edwin to live with distant relatives in Yorkshire, only to be allowed home when his education is completed.

We pick up the story when Edwin, aged eighteen, has returned back to the place he once called home, the old resentments still fester and his grandfather is just as uncompromising in his attitude towards Edwin. The only comfort in this place of secrets is Edwin’s fascination for an old sycamore tree and the spiritual connection he feels towards this powerful symbol of nature and the female spirit who lives within its leaves and branches.

Whilst The Promise Tree has a magical atmosphere there is also a realistic sense of history and I enjoyed how the author worked both into the story, making both elements totally believable. The story is nicely imaginative, with intricate detail so I felt like I was following in Edwin’s footsteps as he struggles to discover who he is and also to connect with his grandfather who only seems to see the worst in him. Covering the momentous years at the turn of the twentieth century, the rather dour nature of Edwin’s life is reiterated when the story takes us from the family owned textile mill in the north of England, to the horror of the battlefields of Europe during the First World War, but running throughout it all is Edwin’s gentle nature, his fascination for the woman he senses in the tree and his determination to put right the sins of the pst and also to finally understand his grandfather’s dislike of him.

Combining magical realism with history is a tricky concept to pull off so all credit to the author for making The Promise Tree such a fascinating story.

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The Tree of Promise by Elisabeth Hobbes is a very good historical fantasy story that I read once.
The story mainly takes place from 1902 until the end of World War I, then into the 21st century. It is a story as old as time. It is a timeless story. It is a story of great beauty. We see beauty when the character becomes one with nature. Nature needs to be appreciated, worshiped and preserved for future generations.
On the other hand, there is the brutality of war. There was the tragedy of the Pals regiment where a generation of young men was lost on the battlefields of France. The entire village was at war and only a few young men returned. We witness how a tragedy has turned life bitter and full of hatred, blaming an innocent person for a tragic accident.
And we see a beautiful, gentle, caring, protective and preserving relationship. It is a beauty that needs to be shared. We see Satan's dark factories in the north of England, where the majority of the population does not have access to green spaces. A generous philanthropist decided to correct this mistake. The characters are all very well drawn and beautiful. This ethereal beauty extends beyond the book to envelop the reader.
I really like the Promise Tree.

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A romantic fantasy history book about Edwin who lives with his distant grandfather when Edwin is dared to climb a tree he falls. His grandfather is angry and sends Edwin away. Years later he calls Edwin back and Edwin meets a girl who triggers memories. If you like historical fantasy then this is a great book. The plot is a magical whimsical realm and the characters have big hearts that I loved . I enjoyed reading this one and would recommend it.

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The Promise Tree by Elisabeth J. Hobbes is part fairy tale, part historical fiction and a lovely book.

Edwin is being raised by his distant grandfather after the death of his parents. His grandfather is a mill owner and all around unlikeable man. When Edwin on a dare climbs an old Sycamore tree on his grandfather’s estate and breaks his arm, his grandfather sends him away. When Edwin climbed the tree he met a strange young girl that may or may not be of this world. When Edwin is eighteen he returns to his grandfather’s house to learn the mill trade for the mill that he will one day inherit. Then he meets the young girl from the tree, now a young woman and magic and strange things happen, but then sadly so does War and Edwin is called to battle in the fields of France. Can the magic of the tree and the dryad that lives in it be enough to help Edwin survive the horrors of WWI?

The Promise Tree was a lovely fantasy romance set in England in the days before and after WWI. I enjoyed the dryad storyline and the writing was lyrical and the story poignant.

Thanks to Netgalley, the publisher, Harper Collins UK, Once More Chapter and the author for the chance to read and review this book.

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It's a good romantic fantasy featuring interesting characters and well done world building.
Compelling and entertaining.
Many thanks to the publisher for this ARC, all opinions are mine

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Edwin meets a little girl as he’s climbing a tree and promptly falls out of it. His stern Grandfather sends him away. Years later he returns and runs into a girl who sparks his memory.
This was a bit of a romantic fantasy story. It’s an enjoyable book. All romance readers will enjoy this book

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The Promise Tree by Elisabeth Hobbes is a very beautiful historical fantasy that I read in just one sitting.
The tale is set mainly from 1902 to just after the end of World War I, and then into the twenty first century. It is a tale as old as time. It is a tale that transcends time. It is a tale of great beauty.
We see the beauty when a character is at one with nature. Nature should be cherished, adored and preserved for future generations.
In contrast there is the ugliness of war. There is the tragedy of the Pals regiments where a generation of young men were lost to the battlefields of France. Whole villages went to war and only a handful of young men returned.
We witness how a tragedy caused a life to become bitter and full of hatred, blaming an innocent for what was simply, a tragic accident.
And we see a beautiful relationship that is gentle, cares, protects and preserves. It is a beauty that needs to be shared. We see the dark satanic mills of northern England where whole sways of people have no access to green spaces. A generous philanthropist decides to right this wrong.
The characters were all well drawn and very beautiful. This ethereal beauty stretched beyond the book to envelop the reader.
I really enjoyed The Promise Tree. It was a departure from my usual genre, showing it is always good to try something new.
I received a free copy via Rachel’s Random Resources. A favourable review was not required. All opinions are my own.

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I just loved this story. Edwin meets a little girl when he is just a boy but it is a connection that will last a lifetime. I liked the visual that played the entire time. Ms. Hobbes write so vividly I could see the town, the war, the house and most of all the tree. It was like watching a movie in my mind. I was transported to the dewy lawn under the Sycamore tree. Throughout the story I was torn on how it would end and I don't want to give it away but it ended just as it should. Which could mean different things to different readers. Definitely a must read! Watch out, you may find yourself looking up into the branches of a tree to see if someone is looking back.

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