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THE OLD TREE by Ruth Brown Kirkus Star


An Environmental Fable

by Ruth Brown & illustrated by Ruth Brown

Age Range: 4 - 8

Pub Date: Sept. 1st, 2007
ISBN: 978-0-7636-3461-2
Publisher: Candlewick

A pigeon mail carrier marshals tree creatures to save their beloved home. With a red bellboy’s cap perched on his head, Pigeon Post delivers the mail to the many residents of the Old Tree. None of them—not Mr. Squirrel or Maggie Magpie or even Professor Owl—has noticed the big white X on the side of the trunk, but Pigeon Post does. Using his telescope, Captain Crow spots a pair of men cutting down a tree not far away. The creatures spring into action: Woodpecker drills a hole where the X used to be, and the others build a new addition. Mr. Badger watches the little ones and Mrs. Rabbit makes a pot of tea. When the men with axes arrive, they find a birdhouse in the side of the old tree inhabited by a family of parakeets, and so they leave. Everybody celebrates, and the reader gets the final surprise of a beautiful pop-up. A nifty environmental fable with a sophisticated text and Brown’s gorgeous acrylic-and-watercolor illustrations. (Picture book. 4-8)