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WELCOME

Theresa Shea’s widely-celebrated debut novel, The Unfinished Child, was published in 2013. It sold over 12,000 copies, was a popular book club selection, and was nominated for several awards. The Shade Tree, winner of the 2020 Guernica Prize for best novel manuscript, is her much-anticipated follow-up. 

The Shade Tree Book Cover

“In its account of almost half a century in the lives of two white southern sisters and of the African Americans whose experiences are inextricable from theirs, The Shade Tree is brutally personal, heartbreakingly political – and remarkably written. Theresa Shea has combined boldness and subtlety with swaths of compassion to come up with a novel that’s both complicated and ferociously clear.”

                                                                                                                                Joan Barfoot

“In her nuanced portrait of families riven by race and sex, Theresa Shea offers a searing indictment of Jim Crow’s corrosive influence that, if unleashed and unquestioned, can make monsters of us all. Beautifully and unflinchingly written, this is a novel for our times.”

                                                                                                                               Terry Gamble
BOOK GIVEAWAYVALID UNTIL NOV. 14 2021

What they are saying about The Shade Tree:

"In its account of almost half a century in the lives of two white Southern sisters and of the African Americans whose experiences are inextricable from theirs, The Shade Tree is brutally personal, heartbreakingly political – and remarkably written. Theresa Shea has combined boldness and subtlety with swaths of compassion to come up with a novel that's both complicated and ferociously clear."
Joan Barfoot
Booker and Scotiabank Giller prizes nominee, and author of Abra, Luck, and Critical Injuries
In her nuanced portrait of families riven by race and sex, Theresa Shea offers a searing indictment of Jim Crow’s corrosive influence that, if unleashed and unquestioned, can make monsters of us all. Beautifully and unflinchingly written, this is a novel for our times.
Terry Gamble
Author of The Water Dancers, Good Family, and The Eulogist
"Theresa Shea’s The Shade Tree reminds me thematically of Lee’s novel. It, too, is set in the south of the States in a similar, though far more expansive, time period; it follows the lives of two young white girls – sisters – coming of age and exploring their positions in the world as white, as women, and as white women. Where the novel differs from Lee’s, though, is that it gives Sliver Lanier, a Black midwife, a voice of her own."
Earthly Abode
"An emotional, complex work that presents difficult, important questions at a high level of craft."
Mesmerizing, engrossing, and brilliantly plotted, this is an achievement that will echo long after the last page is turned.
Fiona Alison
Historical Novel Society

EVENTS

18 May 2022

Historical Fiction Night:

6:00 pm - 7:00 pm

NEWS

Excerpt: Dog Days of Planet Earth

Published in Edify: On a grey February morning in 1985, 52-year-old Trevor Westmore walked out of the penitentiary a free man. “Wait here,” the guard said. Membranes of ice covered
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The Shade Tree, short-listed for Georges Bugnet Award

The Georges Bugnet Award for Fiction is sponsored by the Banff Centre for Arts and Creativity. It is awarded for a novel or collection of short fiction by an Alberta
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“Every once in a while a book comes along that impacts me on an extraordinary level, and I want to encourage everyone I know to read it, and I want to talk about it, because it makes me think and feel so deeply. The Unfinished Child is one such book.”

The 49th Parallel

 

What readers said about The Unfinished Child . . .

"An insightfully sensitive presentation of the difficult, impossible, heart breaking and sometimes rewarding challenges of what most soon-to-be parents never allow themselves to consider"
"This was a book I could not put down. The story is so emotional and the characters are believable and sympathetic."
"This is a superb book. Touched the heart strings, makes you think about relationships, choices in life, what could have been & what will be. I read it in 2 days as couldn't put it down. So pleased that this book has been written."
"As a mother of a child with Down syndrome, this was an emotional story to read...but I couldn't put it down. A difficult picture of the harsh realities for people with disabilities who were institutionalized (not so long ago)... and an accurate picture of today's world view of Down syndrome and the ethics behind prenatal testing. A must read."
"Wow. I loved this book. Could not get anything else done until I finished the book."
"This was a very very good read!! It is a book that will move you. I couldn't put it down until I finished it. I wanted to get into the book and talk to the characters ...it involved me to that point. It raises moral issues in their raw state. This should be on Oprah's list."