The Tiny Giant

Schiffer Kids. Sept. 2020. 32p. Tr $16.99. ISBN 9780764360299.
K-Gr 2–Ciletti describes the life cycle of a white oak tree and its usefulness in nature. Many familiar animals are depicted throughout the book, including a bear, a butterfly, a crow, a deer, a mouse, and a rabbit. A perky stellar’s jay and a squirrel are pictured throughout feeding young ones, darting about, and gathering acorns. When the blue jay accidentally drops an acorn, this action begins the growth process from sprout, to sapling, and then to a full-grown tree, which Morrison clearly illustrates and Ciletti explains. Many pages are without text, which creates a sense of peace and time passing as the seasons change. The presentation combines an idyllic setting and poetic text, resulting in a gentle introduction to ecosystems. Back matter consists of illustrations of 11 North American acorns, a short history of Arbor Day, and instructions on how to plant an acorn and successfully grow an oak tree. This well-organized, slow-paced narrative will encourage young people to grow an oak tree of their own.
VERDICT A charming and pretty addition to nature-focused collections.

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