As Arthurian myth sowed the seeds of democracy, The Rowan Tree foretells a world of founded upon dignity. Anchored by a pair of interlocking love stories, this unflinching novel of ideas brims with passionate quests, revelatory failures, and inextinguishable hope.
The Rowan Tree is an inspirational tour de force that reaches from the rebellious American '60s into humanity's global future. Soul-searching treks around the world intersect with campus revolution, basketball, math, ballet, and a destined rise to the White House. Love runs ahead of politics and lights the way for nations to follow.
I couldn't not finish this one, but I truly wish that I had read, rather than listened to it. I have read reviews where people have suggested that authors should never read their books for the audio version. This is definitely one of them. I had to speed up the narration just to be able to continue to listen to his voice!
The story was certainly interesting, as were the characters. Although the book was long, the characters were never completely fleshed out and neither were their stories. I was intrigued with the concept of dignity and governance, and wondered where the author was taking this. Yet again this was another concept that was never fully fleshed out, and which was left hanging.
I am left with ideas & concepts which I will continue to mull over & see where they take me personally. Was this the author's intent?
I could not give it a better rating, and I cannot recommend it to anyone else to listen to.
1 of 1 people found this review helpful
While I enjoyed the story, I would have enjoyed it more if the narrator had not sounded like he was being forced to read aloud in 6th grade English class. There was little to no emotion in his performance. Also, it could get difficult to tell who was supposed to be speaking in parts with multiple characters having a conversation.
Not good as audible because the author read it. He does not know how to change or alter his voice. So you don't know who is talking.
The story started real good , Rowan a professor who fall in love with his student who is black. Until it came to his daughter falling in love with his half brother. And the story just went on and on and on.
I thought this story was a bit far fetched. Everyone was so successful and the brother sister story line was strange. Just found it hard to believe Adam and his friend would make it to the White House. I also didn't like that the story just skipped to the future in the prologue. Author should not have read the book. He had a monotone voice that got to be irritating.
This complex novel explores themes of dignity, racism and rankism in a compelling narrative. The characters are compelling. However, the book leaves the reader wanting more upon deeper reflection as it never ties back the earlier theme of racism and taboo with the later theme of rankism and taboos to the overall theme of dignity. Also, Francois could have a larger role. All that said, you will fall in love Wiig this complicated family and the rich lessons they offer on dignity. Superb narration.
I have started and stopped this book 3 times. the Narration is sooooooo boring. No inflection in his tone. he reads like an elementary student just trying to get through the chapter, outloud. wish I could get a refund.
robotic story telling, got bored with it and couldn't finish. would not recommend this read.
What did you love best about The Rowan Tree?
I loved the descriptions of travel and the dignity project! In this election era, it was refreshing to think that there may be politicians who can see the need for dignity for all human beings.
What did you like best about this story?
I thought the story was smart and I learned a bit about politics, history and the ways that we can all help mankind.
Which character – as performed by Robert W. Fuller – was your favorite?
Rowan. He is so wise!
Was there a moment in the book that particularly moved you?
When Adam knew that he wanted to move forward in his life, but was not sure how to do that and still have a huge positive impact that he longed to make. I am envious that he had the means to explore the world and loved learning his insights through his photography.
Any additional comments?
Comments made about the author reading his own work are unfounded. I also thought that when I first discovered he was the reader, but this author read his own meaning into the work and his voice was soothing. I felt he portrayed each character's personality perfectly.
This author did his book an injustice by narrating it himself. It was extremely difficult to listen to - dull, expressionless and monotone..
As for the story, a good editor could have cut its length in half and greatly improved the story. It is cluttered with unnecessary, mundane detail and preaches to the reader about the way the author views the world. By far the first part of the book set in the 1970s was the most interesting and even that needed editing.
Would you recommend The Rowan Tree to your friends? Why or why not?
No. The review of changes in higher education is interesting, and the vision for how to make the world better is appealing, but telling this story through a fantasy character (so smart, so wise, so able to use power effectively, so brave, so so sexy) makes that character an unreliable narrator. He will fight for necessary changes with more rights for students, especially women and minorities, but he abuses his power as a college president to sleep with (exploit) a student.
Would you be willing to try another one of Robert W. Fuller’s performances?
No. His voice is deep and resonant, but the reading is surprisingly flat in places, and sometimes I couldn't tell which character was speaking. I finish everything (dinner, my projects, my audible books), but I couldn't finish this book. It might have been better to read this book.