When Ian’s wife Kate dies and leaves him to raise their young daughter, he doesn’t know how he’ll ever feel normal again. A year later, he finds a letter from Kate telling him to take their daughter on a journey to the places they lived when they fell in love and formed their relationship. Her wish is that they’ll both find a way to be joyous even without her.
The Wishing Trees by John Shors is touching and heart warming, although it can be overly sentimental at times. Ian and Mattie both believe their grief will never leave them, but as they follow Kate’s instructions and read the notes she left for them to open along their journey, they begin to see a path that lets them honor their love for Kate, but continue on living in happiness.
You’ll also yearn to travel to the places Ian and Mattie include on their journey—Japan, Nepal, Thailand, India, Hong Kong, Vietnam and Egypt. Ian and Mattie learn something of value in each location.
Fans of Nicholas Sparks will find much to like in Shors’ writing style. Discussion topics include the nature of grief, father-daughter relationships, and embarking on a journey of healing and discovery.