Reviewed by Kim Henson.
Title: Beneath the Trees of Eden
Author: Tim Binding
Published by: Bloomsbury Publishing; www.bloomsbury.com
420 pages; hardback, eBook
Price: Hardback £16.99 (but online price via Bloomsbury, £11.89); eBook £11.89 (but online price via Bloomsbury, £7.13).
The approach of this book’s author Tim Binding is unusual and fascinating. For it is is a novel, through which a variety of themes are interwoven, yet binding them all together is a backbone story about a couple who met by chance and then travelled together around Britain by road at a time when the new network of motorways was being constructed.
Without giving away too much of the plot, which would be a shame as it deserves full reading, it covers in depth the lives of the main characters, against a constantly changing backdrop of different places and circumstances in which they found themselves.
From a motoring angle, the book comprehensively covers the wide variety of vehicles used by the couple and others, and their vital respective parts in the tale, while clocking up many miles in their travels. Yet while there is an important ‘road trip’ aspect to ‘Beneath the Trees of Eden’, it is about far more than that… Notably, the family and other relationships of the main characters are explored and analysed, and while the many physical ‘love’ scenes are graphically and fully described in stark language (which some may not appreciate), the author also draws readers into the lives of these people as they travel, always in hope. Their feelings are considered, and there are some touching moments amidst the chaotic and often unconventional journeying.
Brilliant and entertaining.
Ever since I was a lad I have enjoyed reading books involving motor cars, and this one is no exception. I looked forward to each chapter as it came along, sometimes bringing surprises and interesting twists to the main plot. Oh, and of course I liked reading about the cars and roads of an optimistic and exciting era now long gone.