Arun, a young Mekong upland girl, falls in love and fascination with the forest and all it contains. The murder of a ranger and a frightening epidemic set her against the unprincipled and greedy exploitation of the natural world. The story encourages understanding of the increasing dangers to the environment and to human life that selfish lack of respect for nature creates. Set in a village on the edge of the forest, Tree Crime seeks to portray village life and interactions from an insider’s point of view.
Author Melody Kemp has lived and worked in Asia for over 30 years, spending most time in Nepal, The Philippines, Indonesia, and latterly the Mekong nations, nominally the setting for Tree Crime. Her extensive travel in the region, along with incessant curiosity and environmental concern, has informed Tree Crime about the interaction between changing culture and ecological damage.