The Willow Tree by Hubert Selby Jr.

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Synopsis

Hubert Selby is probably one of the six best novelists writing in the English language.?Financial Times

Bobby is young and black. He shares a cramped apartment in the south Bronx with his mother, his younger siblings and the ceaselessly scratching rats that infest the walls behind his bed. Barely a teenager, he is old beyond his years. The best thing in Bobby's life is Maria, his Hispanic girlfriend. They are in love, and they have big plans for the summer ahead.

Their lives are irrevocably shattered when a vicious Hispanic street gang attack the couple as they walk to school. With Bobby savagely beaten and Maria lying in hospital, terrified and engulfed by the pain of her badly burned face, The Willow Tree takes the reader on on a volcanically powerful trip through the lives of America's dispossessed inner-city dwellers.

Into this bleak and smouldering hinterland, however, Selby introduces a small but vital note of love and compassion. When Bobby's bruised and bloodied body is discovered by Moishe, an aged concentration camp survivor, an unlikely friendship begins. As Moishe slowly, painfully, reveals his own tragic story, Bobby struggles angrily with his desperate need for revenge.

"Selby's place is in the front rank of American novelists ... to understand his work is to understand the anguish of America."?The New York Times Book Review

Also by Hubert Selby Jr available from Marion Boyars: Last Exit to Brooklyn, The Room, The Demon, Requiem for a Dream and Song of the Silent Snow.
 

About Hubert Selby Jr.

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Selby was born in Brooklyn, New York. After a career in the merchant marine cut short by illness, he achieved international recognition for his books.
 
Published April 20, 1999 by Bloomsbury Publishing PLC. 288 pages
Genres: Literature & Fiction. Fiction

Unrated Critic Reviews for The Willow Tree

Kirkus Reviews

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The first novel in 12 years from the once-notorious author of Last Exit to Brooklyn is an embarrassingly cartoonish amalgam of West Side Story, Edward Lewis Wallant's The Pawnbroker, and—I kid you not—Dickens's A Christmas Carol.

May 20 2010 | Read Full Review of The Willow Tree

Publishers Weekly

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More than a decade after the publication of his story collection Song of the Silent Snow, Selby (Last Exit to Brooklyn) returns with a breathless and unconvincing tale of the fall and redemption of Bo

Jul 03 2000 | Read Full Review of The Willow Tree

Publishers Weekly

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More than a decade after the publication of his story collection Song of the Silent Snow, Selby (Last Exit to Brooklyn) returns with a breathless and unconvincing tale of the fall and redemption of Bo

Jul 03 2000 | Read Full Review of The Willow Tree

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