Sunday, February 10, 2013


Blake Kiser is a 12-year-old boy who has given up his latest summer to help out more around the farm. It's not like he has much else to do though—his best friend, Matt, has moved away, leaving Blake more alone than ever, until Greta arrives. Gretchen Wills is a bit of an oddity, who stands out even more in the quiet country town of Hemingford, like a firefly in a dark basement. But like every firefly, shine too bright and you're bound to get caught.

Blake shows Greta some of Hemingford's local color, including the old Bradley House—a house every kid in Hemingford believes to be haunted. They are enthralled by the broken-down shack and the eerie tales that surround it—stories of the man who used to live there. But they find something much more concrete than ghosts waiting within: a crude man who becomes a very unlikely friend. But as wicked crimes are committed throughout the rural community, Blake witnesses the quiet town of Hemingford transform into something ugly he doesn't recognize—and suddenly, childish fears of ghosts and monsters seem irrelevant in the wake of true, tangible danger.

The Perfect Tree is a novel about trust, who you should and who you shouldn't, and the people who surprise you along the way. Truly, like nature, we all harbor the capacity for good, evil, and the various degrees in between.

Sounds like an intriguing read, doesn't it? Notice how the tree on the cover can be used for good or evil? Deep, I know! Here's how I found this amazing book:

A few weeks ago I received a direct message on Twitter. It was from a gentleman, letting me know that he was reading Lancaster House. I was thrilled. 

At the same time, I felt a little nervous. While many men have really enjoyed Lancaster House, it is overwhelmingly a romance novel. And I guess I think of my books as ‘girl books.’ I don’t feel that men are my target audience.

However, I was pleased when I received another message from this same gentleman, letting me know that he was ‘digging’ Lancaster House.


A few days later, I received another message from the gentleman. Would I be interested in reading his newly published novel and swapping reviews on our blogs?

I don’t do reviews. I don’t have time. If I spend my time reading novels and writing reviews, I’d never get any writing done! However, being that this was a mutually beneficial swap of reviews, I readily agreed. I felt flattered to be approached with the idea and it seemed like a great opportunity to help a fellow author. Besides, I love to read—any excuse to do so and I’ll grab it!

Then I was filled with trepidation. What if I don’t like his novel? How do I write my review? What if he hates my novel? What if he gives me a bad review? What if I like his novel and he hates mine?

You get the idea. 

Image courtesy of [Salvatore Vuono] /

I pushed aside my worries and downloaded his book to my Kindle.

The Perfect Tree, written by Kenneth Scott Harris, is not my usual read. I like clean adult romance. To my surprise, however, the book hooked me from the very beginning. It is very well written and flows beautifully. I found myself feeling anxious to see where the story was going and this doesn’t always happen to me when reading a book. I have a few books sitting on my kindle that I’ve never finished because they didn’t capture my attention. (I’m sure they’re wonderful books, they just weren’t for me.) Not the case with The Perfect Tree. Every day I looked forward to entering Blake and Greta’s world once again.

The Perfect Tree is a ‘coming of age’ story. It captures the feelings of childhood perfectly—that stage in life when you’re still a kid, but you’re making the transition into the teenage years. The characters of Blake and Greta act and think like real children and I think this is what kept me so very intrigued. I love a book that portrays a child as a child, with child-like thoughts, not adult thoughts. It reminded me of my childhood; the innocence, the carefree days, and the first tender feelings of young love. The relationship between Blake and Greta is endearing. The Perfect Tree has a ‘feel’ to it, a certain ambiance that stayed with me after I finished the book. I know this is a somewhat cliché concept, but I couldn’t stop thinking about it for days afterwards.

In essence, the young characters are intrigued by a ‘haunted house’ said to be inhabited by a ghost. I assumed the book was going to be some kind of ghost story and I felt that tingly anticipation as my heart raced that little bit faster. Sorry, no spoilers! However, the characters soon find that there are many things in life that are worse than ghosts. The innocence of childhood ends and their eyes are ‘opened.’ I greatly enjoyed the book and it’s an easy five star rating. And the ending—well, the ending is AMAZING. I wanted more! I found myself daydreaming about what happened next. Again, no spoilers. You’ll have to read it! It’ll be worth your time.

Meet the author of The Perfect Tree:

Kenneth S. HarrisKenneth S. Harris has a B.A. in English. His passion for crafting fiction has led to the creation of his first novel, The Perfect Tree, and several short stories. He currently lives in Richmond, KY where he works as part of the Content and Social Media Team at

Find Kenneth Scott Harris here:

The Perfect Tree is available on AMAZON.

I asked Mr. Harris to share a few of his thoughts on The Perfect Tree:

What was your inspiration for writing The Perfect Tree?

The Perfect Tree was inspired by a "true" story originally told to me by my Grandmother, and then echoed again by other people in the community. It was about a lonely, old man who went missing nearby a long time ago. He was found hanging from a tree in the woods, or so the story goes. I thought it was such a sad tale that he was so lonely he chose to end his life. That inspired the short story, "The Perfect Tree," which was the first story I ever published in a peer-reviewed literary magazine at the college where I obtained my B.A. The story is now the prologue of the novel and actually exists within the characters' world, penned by a unique woman, Alfie Mae Piper (Pip, the narrator of the short story).

I was happy to see the short story become so much more and fit so well into the novel. I'm sure Alfie Mae would be happy too. 

Does The Perfect Tree include any personal experiences from your childhood?

Several parts of the book were also inspired by my childhood. For instance, the relationship between Blake and Greta is reminiscent of a fantastic friend I had growing up. Van is also based on a culmination of bullies I tried to steer clear of as a child.

And Fall Festivals, especially as a child, are simply magical. Therefore, I tried to capture that magic in the book.

Thank you, Mr. Harris, for a wonderful book!

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