Walking the Tree / Kaaron Warren

“Like walking from a dream into a mythical land both familiar and delightfully strange.

A tale of tolerance and survival, in a fascinating and beautifully realised world.”

– Trudi Canavan, author of the Black Magician Trilogy

“Kaaron Warren is a fresh, amazingly talented voice out of Australia.

You must read her work.”

– Ellen Datlow

Named by the Canberra Times as one of the Best Reads of 2010

Walking the TreeBotanica is an island, but almost all of the island is taken up by the Tree.

Little knowing how they came to be here, small communities live around the coast line. The Tree provides them shelter, kindling, medicine – and a place of legends, for there are ghosts within the trees who snatch children and the dying.

Lillah has come of age and is now ready to leave her community and walk the tree for five years, learning all Botanica has to teach her. Before setting off, Lillah is asked by the dying mother of a young boy to take him with her. In a country where a plague killed half the population, Morace will otherwise be killed in case he has the same disease. But can Lillah keep the boy’s secret, or will she have to resort to breaking the oldest taboo on Botanica?

Another astonishingly imaginative novel from the acclaimed author of Slights.


Kaaron Warren


Cover: Greg Bridges


4 February 2010

528pp A-format paperback

£7.99 UK   $tbc Aus

ISBN (use US edition ISBN)


Jan 2011

528pp mass-market paperback

$7.99 US    $8.99 CAN

ISBN 978-0-85766-043-5


January 2011


ePub 978-0-85766-044-2

More praise:

“It is the setting that really makes the story and keeps the reader interested. The various communities of Botanica are well thought out and intriguing, and their differing attitudes towards disease, sex and the Tree constantly challenge Lillah’s thoughts and beliefs. It also draws on our own awareness of humanity’s evolution, and adds a sense of reality to the already convincing setting.”

- Total SciFi Online

Sample Chapter

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Please note that the formatting will vary from that of the final commercial product.

pdficon_large Walking the Tree by Kaaron Warren

10 comments on this post.

  1. Cover Art & Synopsis | Walking the Tree by Kaaron Warren | A Dribble of Ink:

    [...] heard of Walking the Tree (or Kaaron Warren, for that matter), before stumbling across it on the Angry Robot Books website, but damn if that cover didn’t grab my attention right [...]

  2. News: Angry Robot Announces a New Way of Telling Stories – NextRead:

    [...] Kaaron Warren told us she wanted to re-write her next book Walking the Tree as a 20,000 word novella from the point of view of one of the book’s minor characters, we thought [...]

  3. Kaaron Warren’s Novel Comes With Free Novella « The World SF News Blog:

    [...] » Apex Book of World SF contributor Kaaron Warren’s last novel from Angry Robot Books, Walking the Tree, now comes with a free novella. Here’s the official press [...]

  4. The Baggage Blog Tour, part I: “Hive of Glass” by Kaaron Warren « The Nocturnalist:

    [...] by another fellow Canberran and friend Kaaron Warren.  Kaaron’s the author of Slights and Walking the Tree for Angry Robot, as well as a great wealth of short stories which have been collected in The [...]

  5. Excellent Auction « Kaaron Warren:

    [...] in previous years by the good folk up in Brisbane. It’s a great cause. I donated my novel Walking the Tree, which can be found in the Dark Fantasy, Horror and Historical novels [...]

  6. Writerly Updates « Kaaron Warren:

    [...] Library’s Harry Markov, guestblogging at The Book Smugglers, has named my novel Walking the Tree his ‘most cherished read of the year’. What a wonderful thing for an author to [...]

  7. Walking the Tree by Kaaron Warren vs. Veracity by Laura Bynum « Bookspread:

    [...] Walking the Tree, by Kaaron Warren, and Veracity, by Laura Bynum, are two dystopian science-fiction novels that have the same start-point: half the world’s population has been killed by a horrible epidemic, and the survivors have created a radically different society to prevent this from happening again. Also, the main and secondary characters are women. [...]

  8. Meet Kaaron Warren … |:

    [...] Walking the Tree is your second book. Even after reading the blurb I find it hard to pin down the genre. What theme [...]

  9. Books of 2012 – January « Lexifabricographer:

    [...] Walking the Tree by Kaaron Warren (library copy, paperback, an Australian Women Writers challenge contender). Even with a month that included Policeman and Winter’s Night, the award for the downright strangest thing I read all month goes hand-down to Walking the Tree. On an island which seems to constitute their entire world, the young women of small coastal communities lead groups of children on a years-long educational circumnavigation of the vast Tree at its centre. As they visit one community after another, the children learn about the various cultures of the island, Botanica, and the women seek a place to settle down. This is some exemplary worldbuilding – each new village has its own distinct culture: crafts, sciences, cooking, superstitions, sexual traditions, beliefs about how to treat the Tree, behaviour towards outsiders etc. It’s a thoughtful – though never preachy or obvious – examination of gender politics, cultural tolerance and the role of tradition and superstition in shaping communities. It’s also a tense, suspenseful drama – the longer that protagonist Lillah keeps her deadly secret, the fewer allies she can depend on for protection. I think that it might do this beautiful, melancholy journey an unfortunate disservice to classify it as an epic anthropological mystery, but I think that’s as close as I can get. [...]

  10. Review: Walking the Tree by Kaaron Warren (AWW Challenge #6) « Mortal words:

    [...] Get Walking the Tree from Angry Robots [...]

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