Category Archives: Polk


Sam Mills. The Money Tree. New York: Xlibris, 1999.

moneyMitchell Rainey and his brother Lee are country boys.  They live outside of town in the forested mountains.  And they know those mountains–the birds, the trees, the ravines and gorges, the old trails, the best places to fish.  On the way back from fishing one day, Mitch’s dog Mica takes off.  When Mitch catches up with him, they are at a remote clearing along the riverbed. There, in the hollow of a tree, Mitch notices a plastic bag.  A bag containing $1,800.

That night, Mitch shares the news of his find with his older brother Lee.  Lee, a high school boy who has just gotten an expensive parking ticket, cannot believe his brother’s good fortune.  And because the boys are close, Mitch readily agrees to share the money with Lee.  Lee now has the funds to buy a car and new clothes that will help him shed his hayseed image and attract the town girl he’s been pining after.  Mitch only pines for better fishing gear, a deer rifle, and new collars for his dogs.

But is turns out that Mitch is sharing danger as well.  That $1,800 is drug money and when the boys come to get the last of it, they see a man killed–a man who the dealers thought had cheated them.  The thugs know that the boys have seen the murder and they now now know who the real thief is.  Mitch and Lee have to run for their lives–through the forest that they know so well and that is well described in this coming-of-age adventure story.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 1990-1999, 1999, Henderson, Mills, Sam, Mountains, Polk

Claude C. Washburn. The Green Arch. New York: Albert & Charles Boni, 1925.

Arthur Holland is a World War I veteran suffering from a failed romance and what we would now call PTSD.  In an attempt to sort himself out, he rents a cabin outside of Beckett, North Carolina.  The cabin is nothing special, but its location is spectacular.  The agent from whom he rents the cabin provides Holland with a well-trained, spirited horse, Cham.  Soon Holland is taking long rides into the woods.  On one such ride he comes upon an enormous rhododendron, rooted in a brook.  When Holland passes under the rhododendron he feels as though he has entered an enchanted land.  Soon things happen–enchanting and otherwise–as Holland makes friends with a mysterious old man and his beautiful granddaughter and  experiences hospitality unimaginable in such a remote location.  But he also has a dust-up with a band of malevolent mountaineers who may be shadowing him on his rides.  Throughout these days of adventure, Holland still feels detached from the dangers and beauty he encounters until his foolish curiosity puts a young woman in peril.

Tryon, North Carolina is thought to be the model for Beckett. In this novel, the mountains of Polk County are portrayed as wild and dangerous.

Check this title’s availability in the UNC-Chapel Hill Library catalog.

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Filed under 1920-1929, 1925, Mountains, Novels Set in Fictional Places, Polk, Washburn, Charles C.