The Last Tree, written by Ingrid Chabbert and illustrated by Guridi, is a short picture book, elegant and concise, but don’t be fooled by its simplicity. This tale of a boy and his friend working hard to save a tree cuts to the quick. The stunning illustrations display the world the boy lives in, with “roads and walls and lots of other ugly things” rather than grass or trees. After his best friend finds a small sapling in a construction zone, the two work together to save it so that it can become a big tree. One thing I like about this book is that the small activism on the part of the characters feels real, and it’s impact is in proportion. The city of grey ugly things doesn’t become green as a result, but neither is their effort futile. The balance is well set to reality, and does not come out as a feel-good book about how the work is done, but rather one example of action that can be taken. This lovely little book is set to come out on April 4th, 2017, just in time for you to order it for your Arbor Day or Earth Day celebrations, which this year are on April 28 & 22, respectively.
This book review was spurred by some exciting news: I am now a children’s librarian at the Willingboro Public Library! The fact that I keep a Robin Hood hat in my car came in handy on the first day of the job, and I already have a reading list a mile long that I’m plowing through quite happily. So I’m off to a great start! You can look forward to more tales, tips, and updates on children’s librarianship in the future.