Book review: Tree of Wonder: The Many Marvelous Lives of a Rainforest Tree, Kate Messner, illustrated by Simona Mulazzani

Messner, Kate. Tree of Wonder: The Many Marvelous Lives of a Rainforest Tree. Illustrated by Simona Mulazzani. Chronicle Books, 2015.$16.99. ISBN 9781452112480. Unpaged. Ages 5-8. P7Q7.

Messner Tree of WonderThis will be a useful book for school libraries and for classrooms working on environmental issues, geography, biology, etc. The setting is an almendro tree (the “tree of life” in Latin America), and we learn about the wide variety of animals and insects that are supported in this little ecosystem. Each spread has information about a specific animal or insect, a sidebar with more detailed information, silhouettes of the specific creature, and rich acrylic and pencil illustrations. I liked that at the end of the book there is detailed information about the almendro tree and rainforest conservation. There are also a couple of pages about “rainforest math” and suggestions for further information.

January 2016 review by Carol Schramm.

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