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Far from the Tree
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Far from the Tree

4.33  ·  Rating details ·  11,164 Ratings  ·  2,390 Reviews
A contemporary novel about three adopted siblings who find each other at just the right moment.

Being the middle child has its ups and downs.

But for Grace, an only child who was adopted at birth, discovering that she is a middle child is a different ride altogether. After putting her own baby up for adoption, she goes looking for her biological family, including—

Maya, her l
Hardcover, 374 pages
Published October 3rd 2017 by HarperTeen
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Florine Hey Lisa, I actually think you should. I just finished it, and what I took from the book is this: giving up babies is a trauma, adopted kids have…moreHey Lisa, I actually think you should. I just finished it, and what I took from the book is this: giving up babies is a trauma, adopted kids have questions & fears that are complicated, adoptive families can be wonderful and supportive, and net net every family has issues. The kids look for their biological mom not because they don't love their families, but to understand the circumstances. It is fiction, but I don't think there is any judgement one way or the other, at least from what I could see (my experience is extremely limited though, so I may not have the same triggers.) I did find it was a beautiful story.(less)
Heidi This would receive an R rating due to the F word on what seemed like every other page.

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
Rating details
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Emma Giordano
Mar 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
What an absolutely amazing contemporary novel. I am truly BLOWN AWAY by how fantastic this story is. I would recommend it to absolutely everyone.

CW: teen pregnancy, adoption, foster care system, alcoholism

I don't feel I even have the words to express how fantastic this book is. It is touching, emotional, heart-warming and heart-wrenching at the exact same time. Far From The Tree is one of those books that causes you to have a weight on your chest the entire time you are reading. I cried from sa
Hailey (HaileyinBookland)
Mar 12, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: owned, contemporary
This was so well done! The writing was great and I truly felt for the characters and their struggles. I will admit I did struggle a bit with a suspension of disbelief just in regards to the fact that the mother had 3 kids in a very short period of time when she was extremely young. But, that was a very minor thing. Overall I thought this book was really good!
Hannah Greendale
Click here to watch a video review of this book on my channel, From Beginning to Bookend.

Do yourself a favor and read this book.

Hello Goodreaders, it is I, the Black Sheep. Missed me?


Just yesterday I was telling myself how wonderful my reads have been lately. And voilà! I have jinxed myself instantly.

I tried, I really did. Then I tried some more, because I am familiar with this author, but alas nothing.

Nothing. My heart feels nothing. It should be devastated or filled with admiration or, I don’t know, just *feel* something. Goddamn, why can’t you feel something, heart?

Now I don’t want my heart to be giving me a hea
Larry H
Dec 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
4.5 stars for this one.

Robin Benway's Far from the Tree recently won the National Book Award. It's a beautiful, thought-provoking tearjerker of a book, a meditation about family and its different forms, as well as the fears we don't share with those we love, and how what we don't say is often more of a roadblock than the things we do.

At times this book had me like:

While at other times it had me like:

Grace is an only child, although she's always known that she was adopted. But shortly after s
may ❀
Sap Warning
I come from a big family and even though at times they can be annoying as heck and other times make me want to jump out of a window, theyre literally my life and I would die without them
okay im done my sap – gross


kermit gets me

- BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL BEAUTIFUL and honest sibling rep. this was done so sosososooso well
- Theyre annoying and irritating and you want to punch them sometimes but like they got your b
Jan 30, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Library overdrive Audiobook...narrated by Julia Whelan......
.......Julia is a ‘book-reading-pro’!!! I’d go out of my way to listen to books read by her. She’s really terrific....making each character come ALIVE with very distinct personalities.

I completely agree with the publishers summary of this National Book Award Winner....
“Perfect for fans of NBC’s “THIS IS US”, ( I am a fan), Robin Benway’s beautiful interweaving story of three very different teenagers connected by blood explores the me
Elise (TheBookishActress)
🌟full review posted on blog!

That was... unexpected. Far From the Tree is an exploration of family, the one you find and the one you're born into. Great concept, right? But I definitely did not guess just how good this would be. A story like this is one that can only succeed based off stellar character work, and my expectations for character work in contemporary is often quite low. But this was so lovely.

This book revolves around three siblings, each with their own conflicts.
🌹Grace has recently
may ➹ (hiatus)
Feb 18, 2018 marked it as to-read
lazy: “I stopped reading a few days ago but left the book on my currently reading shelf”
lazier: “I stopped reading a week ago but left the book on my currently reading shelf”
laziest: “I didn’t even read one word of this book but left the book on my currently reading shelf for more than a month”

(I’m laziest. and pathetic)


a conversation with myself:

me: so I just read a book that made me cry, what should I read now
my brain: hmm
my brain: well
my brain: ho
Camila Roy ••RoyIsReading••

"Seventeen years is a long time to wait for a family''

This book is an example of why I need the Goodreads Rating Scale to be bigger. On a scale of 1 to 10, definitely a 10!

Robin Benway is an amazing writer. I could not put this book down. I was reading it at school in-between classes, in the car (which I NEVER do) and I think at one point I actually read while walking. I think it’s safe to say I was obsessed.

This is the story of three adopted siblings who find each other at just the r
Korrina  (OwlCrate)
Mar 25, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Damn, that was beautiful.
Okay. First, we must talk about the most important thing, and that is that cover. Holy sh*t that thing is beautiful. Man oh man. I hate myself for reading this as an ebook out of excitement instead of waiting to buy a copy. I’m way too materialistic for this BS.

Now we can talk about the actual contents.

I first heard about this book because it won the National Book Award for Young Adult Literature, and I was doing a very grown-up blog post for the very grown up college-affiliated blog I’m part of
Chelsea (chelseadolling reads)
Jan 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: own
Omg. So touching. I cry 😭
Ann Marie (Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine)
You can read this and all of my reviews at Lit·Wit·Wine·Dine.

Far From the Tree took me far out of my comfort zone in the most excellent way! It’s only the second audiobook I’ve listen to till the very end and it’s YA.

Here’s what I loved:

The Characters – Grace, Maya, and Joaquin were well-developed characters to love. They’re all basically good kids carrying more baggage than most adults could bear. Some of their baggage is shared and some is very specific to the character.

The Story – There’s a
Yusra  ✨
5 stars ✨

"Seventeen years is a long time to wait for a family."

I can't express in words how much I loved this book. It was just what I needed, everything I wanted and so much more . It's been a loooong time since I've gave out a 5 stars (actually, I think this is my first 5 star of 2018? correct me if I'm wrong? but yay?)😊

When I say I love contemporary, or whenever I get the need to read contemporary books this is what I'm talking about. This is the feeling I crave for when I'm done with
Jillian (bookishandnerdy)
Feb 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing
this was emotional and put my heart through the wringer.
this won the national book award for a reason and it's an all time favorite.
family stories are always a favorite of mine and this was just incredible.
i really wanted to read this originally because it was compared to This Is Us and that is one of my all time favorite shows and JESUS IT IS SUCH A GOOD COMPARISON in terms of family and feels and just UGH OMG I HAVE TOO MANY FEELINGS RIGHT NOW.
So, I may or may not have shaken the the shit out of this thing and yelled WHERE HAVE YOU BEEN!!! WHY AREN'T THERE MORE BOOKS LIKE YOU IN THE WORLD!!

This thing had be sobbing, and laughing, and sobbing while laughing, and tearing my hair out, and more sobbing, and yelling "How did you know?!?!" I swear there's not a box of tissues or a roll of toilet paper left in the house.

I am emotionally done. I'll write a review later after I put myself back together. Seriously though, read this.

Sep 23, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-in-2017
I just finished reading this book, and I honest to goodness cannot stop crying thinking about it. What a beautiful, raw, honest portrayal of families in a way I've never really encountered before. What an amazing sibling story. The relationships, the characters, the story - all just so wonderful, and this is def my fave Robin Benway book as of right now.
Jan 31, 2018 rated it it was amazing
This book was so beautiful and so lovely. I would recommend it to everyone, I thought it was so heart-warming, but also so heart-breaking at times. Seriously guys, read this! It's one of those books that makes you feel so many things and it takes serious willpower for me not to recommend this to everyone I come across.

Once I finished this book, I realised it actually dealt with so many issues and it was done so eloquently. Sometimes when books deal with quite a lot, it can feel either too heavy
Dec 14, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So beautiful! I loved this book so much. This is a story about three siblings who have been fostered and adopted by separate families very early in their lives, and shows readers the many definitions family can have. I adored every minute of reading this book!

Overall, love the characters, the story, and the meaning behind this entire book!
I applaud anyone who was able to review this book coherently. Basically all I can think to say is : be prepared to cry. A lot.
Jan 20, 2018 rated it liked it
It’s a perfectly fine feel-good novel about adoption and sibling love, with abundance of compassionate people and HEA for all. A bit too sentimental, simplistic and tear-jerky for my taste.

Reminded me of Sara Zarr’s novels, but less nuanced.
Nov 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: finished-in-2017, ya
3.5 star lights, star brights.

This winner of the National Book Award is an old-school weepie bringing together three siblings who have been adopted (except for one still in foster care) by different families. The chapters rotate between each, beginning with Grace, a teenaged mom who just gave up a child herself to adoption (and the wheels spin inexorably).

She comes to know younger sister Maya, and eventually THEY come to know older brother Joaquin (different father, as he is part Mexican). Gra
Jan 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Rating - 5 stars.

Okay wow this book is beautiful.

This story follows three siblings who have been separated - adopted & fostered - when they were younger into different families. It has such amazing and honest representation of family, friends and relationships.

I laughed and I cried with this book. It affected me in a personal way as I have a large family myself.

It also had a good representation of LGBT, families, foster care, adoption etc etc. This is a story that will most definitely
May 06, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I haven’t cried so much reading a book in a long time. Beautiful.
Kate (GirlReading)
A heartwarming story of family, identity and discovering your place in the world. This the second of Robin Benway’s books I’ve read and it didn’t disappoint. Her writing is so comfortable to read, her stories easy to follow and her characters are undeniably quick to warm to. I throughly enjoyed the multitude of topics this book covered, whilst simultaneously keeping them intertwined but not overwhelming the plot with ‘too much’. I thought the various relationships explored throughout were wonder ...more
Alexis  (TheSlothReader)
Sep 30, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: review-books
4.5 stars

This book was so beautiful. It follows three biological siblings as they discover each other. They're all dealing with their own heap of issues and they're all such unique characters. I absolutely loved each of the siblings and I especially loved getting to watch them grow together as people and as family. Maya, the youngest, is a lesbian and I loved how accepting every character was of her sexuality. She felt so authentic and she was hilarious. Grace, the middle child, absolutely broke
rachel • typed truths
pls can i read more books like this
You know you’ve read a good book when you –

Have a deep ache in the pit of your stomach, because it ended.

2) Close your eyes, and heave a deep sigh, because it ended exactly at the right moment.

Far from the Tree falls into the second category for me. Well, I didn’t read it technically. I listened to the audiobook and it was splendid. Heartwarming, the right tones at all the right places; the narration was brilliant. And I,... it is not easy to point out exactly why I loved it so much. You know
Maria (Big City Bookworm)


I absolutely loved this one. It was so much more than I was expecting and I think it's pretty underrated. Contemporary young adult fiction is one of my favourite genres, but I feel like I've been picking up some really great ones recently. Far From The Tree was no exception.

Stay tuned for a full review coming soon!
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Robin Benway is a National Book Award winner and New York Times bestselling author of six novels for young adults, including Audrey, Wait!, the AKA series, and Emmy & Oliver. Her books have received numerous awards and recognition, including a 2008 Blue Ribbon Award from the Bulletin for the Center of Children's Books, 2009's ALA Best Books for Young Adults, and 2014's ALA Popular Paperbacks f ...more
More about Robin Benway

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“The older she got, the more human her parents seemed, and that was one of the scariest things in the world. She missed being little, when they were the all-knowing gods of her world, but at the same time, seeing them as human made it easier to see herself that way, too.” 29 likes
“That’s what parents do. They catch you before you fall. That’s what family is.” 7 likes
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