Using a tree and her seed as metaphor, Van draws on her immigrant background to demonstrate parental love for a child, even if it means letting go.
An anthropomorphic little tree is worried that the forest around her is no longer flourishing and wants a better life for her little seed. “Are trees this small everywhere?” she asks a brown bird and learns that there is a place “where trees grow a hundred feet tall” and “leaves are so thick, you can sit in the shade all day!” The little tree decides to toss her seed into the wind. Over the years, the little tree wonders what has become of her baby seed. “Is it strong and tall? Does it remember me at all?” When the brown bird returns, it tells her about a very special tree; perhaps that is her little seed? The little tree receives her answer when an elegant leaf twirls and shimmers right into her armlike branches. Adinolfi expertly layers mixed media comprising colored pencils, gouache, stamping, and more to create texture and movement on the static page. Add vibrant colors in saturated hues, and the story’s dreamlike environs come to life.
Full of gentle rhythm and repetition, this deceptively simple, layered poetic tale will charm its way into readers’ hearts and begs to be read over and over again. (Picture book. 5-9)