Kait's Bookshelf

Book Reviews and Literary Services

Book Review: Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

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Wishtree“Trees can’t tell jokes. But we can certainly tell stories. And if all you hear is the whisper of leaves, don’t worry. Most trees are introverts at heart.”

– Wishtree

I love books told from an unusual perspective. The point of view in Wishtree is what initially grabbed my attention. I’ve been looking forward to reading this book since fall, when I included it in my post of upcoming children’s and middle grade reads. In Wishtree, we hear from Red, a very old red oak tree. Red has seen and heard a lot over her many hundreds of years. She is very wise, but she knows the rules – no speaking to humans, ever. So, when Red sees a new family move into the neighborhood and quickly realizes that things aren’t quite right, she sets about trying to find a way to fix it.

Red is part of a beautiful old tradition in which the people of the neighborhood tie a piece of cloth to her branches with a wish one day a year. Wish Day has become a big deal in town. But when Red sets out to grant one wish in particular – a very lonely wish made by a very lonely girl who is treated differently because she wears a headscarf – things take an unexpected turn.

This was a quick, yet powerful read. I appreciated the different perspectives, from Red and the animal friends who live in and around her, to the many characters on her street and in her neighborhood. This was also a quiet read, with a lot of introspection from Red and contemplation between her and her animal friends. It is not action-packed, but it does pack an emotional punch for the reader. I would recommend this book to middle grade classrooms as I think it could open an important dialogue about differences and how we treat one another.

Wishtree is available now!

Up Next: My review of two cozy Christmas mysteries, Death of a Toy Soldier and Murder on the Toy Town Express by Barbara Early. Subscribe to the blog or sign up with your email here so you don’t miss out!

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Author: kaitsbookshelf

A few years ago, I made the decision to go back to school, and at the age of thirty-five, I received my B.A. in Writing (better late than never!). I am now pursuing a career in the field I am most passionate about. I am a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association and the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. I am a freelance writer, a published author, a freelance editor, and a book reviewer. I also offer book and product promotions. Thanks for visiting my website!

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