Picture a Tree by Barbara Reid-Review

Parents and kids alike are both going to be thrilled at the release of the newest picture book from acclaimed author and artist Barbara Reid, now available from Scholastic Canada. Picture a Tree is a beautiful journey through a variety of different perspectives on nature, with every page created in Ms. Reid’s legendary Plasticine artwork. I was lucky enough to receive a copy to review and I sat down to read it to my sons and a few other kids one peaceful afternoon. Here’s a brief synopsis of the book:

picture a tree by barbara reid cover artFrom bare branches tracing the sky to an explosion of colour, a place for adventure or a friend to shelter us from the sun – a tree can be so many things. With lyrical text and her signature Plasticine magic, Barbara Reid captures these majestic beings: in all weather, in every season, growing and changing, interacting with the people and animals around them. Picture a tree – now, look again!

This was such an enjoyable book and I loved seeing the different ways that trees were portrayed. From the pages that showed the skeleton-like bare birch trees to those that showed the riotous colours of spring and fall, the trees really did show as many differences and personalities as human beings themselves. My personal favourite page was the one that showed trees at different ages, from fragile newborn seedlings to ancient grandfathers. One of my small hometown’s beautiful century-old trees was recently struck by lightning and had to be cut down, but while it was standing it was just like the majestic grandfather pictured in the book.

Overall, this book embodied everything I have come to love about Barbara Reid’s books. It was colourful, imaginative and so beautiful. And it really did make me and my boys think about the trees in our neighbourhood a little differently. From those that had already shed their leaves and stood stark against the sky to those that were covered in brightly coloured leaves and berries, there was an infinite variation in the beauty around us. For a unique look at all the different things a tree can be, check out Picture a Tree by the incomparable Barbara Reid.

Buy It: To purchase Picture a Tree by Barbara Reid, check your local bookstore or Scholastic Canada book fair

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