The Trees: A Novel (Paperback)
An uncanny literary thriller addressing the painful legacy of lynching in the US, by the author of Telephone
Percival Everett’s The Trees is a page-turner that opens with a series of brutal murders in the rural town of Money, Mississippi. When a pair of detectives from the Mississippi Bureau of Investigation arrive, they meet expected resistance from the local sheriff, his deputy, the coroner, and a string of racist White townsfolk. The murders present a puzzle, for at each crime scene there is a second dead body: that of a man who resembles Emmett Till.
The detectives suspect that these are killings of retribution, but soon discover that eerily similar murders are taking place all over the country. Something truly strange is afoot. As the bodies pile up, the MBI detectives seek answers from a local root doctor who has been documenting every lynching in the country for years, uncovering a history that refuses to be buried. In this bold, provocative book, Everett takes direct aim at racism and police violence, and does so in a fast-paced style that ensures the reader can’t look away. The Trees is an enormously powerful novel of lasting importance from an author with his finger on America’s pulse.
About the Author
Percival Everett is the author of more than twenty books. He is the recipient of the Hurston/Wright Legacy Award and the PEN Center USA Award for Fiction. He teaches at the University of Southern California and lives outside Los Angeles.
“At points witty, surreal, and farcical, The Trees is a timely commentary by an American master on the ways that white supremacy continues to haunt us whether we realize it or not.”—Oprah Daily
“[The Trees] blends Everett’s wit with elegy and solemnity.”—The Boston Globe
“The Trees is a wild book: a gory pulp revenge fantasy and a detective narrative. . . . [It] is just as blood-soaked and just as hilarious as Inglourious Basterds or Django Unchained, but it comes with more authentic historical weight for being set in a dreamlike counterpresent.”—Bookforum
“The Trees weaves tropes of pulp-cop noir with trademark acuity and genre-bending inventiveness to deliver a swift, startlingly expansive take on the legacy of lynching in the American South.”—Porter House Review
“This fierce satire is both deeply troubling and rewarding.”—Booklist, starred review