Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Picture a Tree

Picture a Tree

Barbara Reid
Nonfiction Picture Book
For ages 4 to 6
Albert Whitman, 2013   ISBN: 978-0807565261

When we think of a tree we tend to forget that a tree can be many things. It is not just a thing with a brown trunk and green leaves. In winter it might be bare, “a drawing on the sky” or it might wear a snowsuit under which it “holds spring, sleeping like a baby.” In spring, in the beginning, it might be touched with just a few “drops of color,” which then turns into a fantastic bonanza of greens, whites and pinks.

   Trees can form “a tunnel” over a street, and from a distance they can seem like “an ocean.” For birds, animals, and insects, trees are a home and a source of food, and for children trees can become a pirate ship, a bear cave, a clubhouse, and even a friend.

   In this gorgeous and delightful book a thoughtful text is paired with art that was created by pressing Plasticine onto illustration board, giving the artwork a three dimensional and textured quality that is quite remarkable. As they look through the book and read or listen to the text, children and their grownups will realize that the trees that they take for granted really are remarkable things, things that make their world richer and more beautiful.