Thursday, September 21, 2017

Wishtree - a review 9.21.17

Sometimes a book lands in your hands and you know that it's pure magic.  

by Katherine Applegate
published by Feiwel & Friends
Sept. 26th

That is the case with Wishtree.  This is the book I want to put in the hands of every child, every where.  Children believe in hopes and wishes.  They see things as they are - not what others have told them.  At what point does this change?  When do their beliefs change because of misconceptions?  What a powerful powerful book.  Let the kids lead.  Let their open minds stay open.  Let their power to believe in hope and wishes continue.  

I believe books have the power to change lives, change minds.  I also see how kids have the ability to accept and understand way better than adults do.  The children in Wishtree show this perfectly.  They are also able to make a difference in this story.  Maybe if we allow kids to make decisions about our world, we would have more peace and equality...  The way children see community and friendship and family shines through in this book.

I think using an unconventional narrator made a difference in this story.  In my opinion, having the character that is telling the story be non-human, made the story not be a learn your lesson, preachy story, but one that tells the beauty and power of open minds.  Of hoping and wishing.  And believing.

Finally, I want to take a moment and acknowledge the gorgeous cover by Charles Santoso.  The cover is stunning and I could get lost in the details he included on the tree.  I can't wait to see the interior artwork with the finished book.

This book is going on my Mock Newbery list and I will make sure to have multiple copies on hand in my library.  I hope a copy (or two or three) get into your libraries!

And don't miss the fabulous trailer!

Goodreads summary
Trees can't tell jokes, but they can certainly tell stories. . . .

Red is an oak tree who is many rings old. Red is the neighborhood "wishtree"—people write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red's branches. Along with her crow friend Bongo and other animals who seek refuge in Red's hollows, this "wishtree" watches over the neighborhood.

You might say Red has seen it all. Until a new family moves in. Not everyone is welcoming, and Red's experiences as a wishtree are more important than ever.

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