A newcomer to Sycamore, Arizona is out for a walk one day and happens upon human remains in a dry desert ravine. People in town fear that it is Jess Winters, a teen-aged girl who disappeared 18 years earlier.
The discovery rekindles stories that were rumored about this troubled girl at the time she disappeared.
In the time it takes the authorities to make an identification, the townspeople recall painful memories of their own that occurred during that time.
This book is told from the various viewpoints of the town’s inhabitants. Those close to Jess and people who merely knew her in passing. All felt some sort of kinship with the impetuous girl whose mother moved her to Sycamore following a divorce.
Painful memories come to the forefront and are re-examined. The recollections of the townspeople become a source of clarity for figuring out a way forward with their own stagnant lives.
The author skillfully weaves the story of a girl nearing adulthood with the town residents whose lives she affected.
A great read from the first page to the last.
About The Author:
Bryn Chancellor’s debut novel “Sycamore” was an Indie Next pick, an Amazon Editor’s Best Book of 2017, and among Bustle’s Best Debuts of 2017.
Her story collection “When Are You Coming Home” won the Prairie Schooner Book Prize. Her fiction and non-fiction have appeared in various publications.
She earned her M.F.A. in fiction from Vanderbilt University and is an assistant professor at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte. A native of California raised in Arizona, she is married to artist Timothy Winkler.