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SKY TREE by Thomas Locker


by , , illustrated by

Age Range: 5 - 9

Pub Date: Sept. 30th, 1995
ISBN: 0-06-024883-1
Publisher: HarperCollins

 In a series of 14 luminous paintings, the creators of Calico and Tin Horns (1992) watch a single tree through a year of changing seasons, light, and weather. Each spread has the same elements: an exquisite painting of the tree on a hill against the sky on the right page; on the left, the text is centered in rectangles of complementary backgrounds. The main text is consistently well matched to the glorious paintings, affectingly spare, and sometimes poetic. Unfortunately, appearing in smaller, lighter typeface are brief questions, e.g., ``How does this painting show how water in the air changes the way we see things?'' Rather than enhancing an appreciation of the tree's various aspects, these questions comprise didacticand needlessjustification for the book. The questions (and the paintings, scaled down) are repeated, and then answered, in an appended section, ``Connecting Art and Science in Sky Tree,'' that links science-related observations for each painting with fascinating information on Locker's techniques. This handsome effort is ideal for sharing. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-9)