Synopses & Reviews
A boxy orange tree growing in the middle of a courtyard shoos away the local wildlife “afraid that one of his beautiful leaves might fall.” Composed of simple brightly colored shapes Costa’s (Olga the Cloud) mixed media pictures are the story’s main draw along with spontaneous comments from animal onlookers. “Go away” the tree says (his only spoken words) in the springtime. “What an unpleasant tree” remarks a fairy like butterfly in response. Devastated when his leaves change color and begin to drop in the fall the vain tree is consoled by a crow who tells him about the cycle of seasons and reassures him that spring will bring him new leaves “more beautiful than ever.” This inspires the tree to make a promise (presumably to be more kind though it goes unstated) and when spring returns birds cats snails and other creatures cluster in and around its branches. The straightforward language and pared down cartooning keep the book’s emotions at arm’s length but readers already aware of how the changing seasons affect plant life will still be able to feel smarter than the naïve tree. Ages 3–6. (Feb.)" Publishers Weekly Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved."