Under My Tree
by Tallandier, Muriel; Fujisawa, Mizuho (ILT); Klinger, Sarah (TRN)






A modern take on Shel Silverstein's The Giving Tree celebrates the friendship between a curious child and her favorite tree. When Susanne leaves her city home to visit her grandmother, she finds a very special tree of her own in the forest. Each time she returns to the tree, she observes something unique about it, from the sheltering protection of its branches to the scratchy surface of its bark. This is a wonderful introduction to trees for young children that gently cultivates an appreciation for nature. Interwoven in the fictional text are unique facts about trees and simple activities that encourage readers to touch, smell and observe the world that is all around them. Illustrations.





Muriel Tallandier runs a magazine publishing company in France. This is her first picture book. She has always felt a strong bond with nature and enjoys exploring the forest with her own curious daughter, who inspired the character of Susanne in Under My Tree.

Mizuho Fujisawa was born and raised in Japan near Mount Fuji. After studying biology, she moved to France and pursued a career in illustration. She now lives in the Alsace region with her family and continues to illustrate books.





A city girl falls in love with a tree and marvels at its wonders. Susanne looks forward to vacations at her grandparents' house in the country. On a walk in the forest with her grandmother, Susanne discovers her "big, beautiful tree," like something out of a fairy tale. Every day, she visits her tree and notices something miraculous and new: the view from the topmost branches, the sound of the wind through the leaves, a family of owls, insects that march along the truck. As she delights in each discovery, leaf-shaped callout boxes in page corners encourage readers to discuss, explore, and interact. (Some boxes present facts, but no sources are cited.) Even when she returns to the city, Susanne thinks often of her beloved tree. The stylized illustrations use a variety of perspectives—close up, bird's eye, profile—to create a page-turning dynamic as action drives readers from left to right. Solid colors and patterns of the modern world contrast with translucent, tissue-paper-like leaves, placing the emphasis firmly on the natural world. Like the illustrations, Susanne's detailed first-person narration is tree-centered, leaving little room for character development. Originally published in France, the lyrical text is not always served well by the translation, most notable in the awkward toggling between past and present tenses. All characters appear white. An interactive, modern-day The Giving Tree without the creepy self-sacrifice. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.





A city girl falls in love with a tree and marvels at its wonders. Susanne looks forward to vacations at her grandparents' house in the country. On a walk in the forest with her grandmother, Susanne discovers her "big, beautiful tree," like something out of a fairy tale. Every day, she visits her tree and notices something miraculous and new: the view from the topmost branches, the sound of the wind through the leaves, a family of owls, insects that march along the truck. As she delights in each discovery, leaf-shaped callout boxes in page corners encourage readers to discuss, explore, and interact. (Some boxes present facts, but no sources are cited.) Even when she returns to the city, Susanne thinks often of her beloved tree. The stylized illustrations use a variety of perspectives—close up, bird's eye, profile—to create a page-turning dynamic as action drives readers from left to right. Solid colors and patterns of the modern world contrast with translucent, tissue-paper-like leaves, placing the emphasis firmly on the natural world. Like the illustrations, Susanne's detailed first-person narration is tree-centered, leaving little room for character development. Originally published in France, the lyrical text is not always served well by the translation, most notable in the awkward toggling between past and present tenses. All characters appear white. An interactive, modern-day The Giving Tree without the creepy self-sacrifice. (Picture book. 4-8) Copyright Kirkus 2020 Kirkus/BPI Communications. All rights reserved.






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