The Wonder Tree
Teresa Heapy and Izzy Burton
When I was a child we had a large oak tree with a resident owl in our garden; this lyrical story of Teresa’s with its wonderful illustrations by Izzy Burton, took me right back there to that tree, which I loved.
The particular oak tree in the story is home to Little Owl and his Mummy; and as it opens a leaf landing on his head disturbs Little Owl’s sleep. Despite his mother’s assurances, the little creature can’t get back to sleep. He’s concerned about the tree –surely it will be cold without its leaves, won’t it?
“Let me tell you a wonder,” comes the reply and Mummy Owl proceeds to explain first about leaf fall and seasonal change,
and then how the tree ‘drinks’.
However neither explanation sends Little Owl back to sleep and he requests a story. Happy to oblige, Mummy Owl’s story is of the tree and the stories that reside therein – held in its annular rings,
in ‘the clasp of its roots, and the kiss of its leaves’.
Then, as the moon high above sends out its silvery light, bidding a temporary farewell to the huge, ancient tree that is their home, parent and child spread their wings and sail off into the night sky.
Along with Little Owl, little humans will love learning about the natural world and its wonders, especially at bedtime. Equally, they’ll love being immersed in nature through debut illustrator’s woodland scenes showing the rich hues of autumn as they gradually fade to sepia, and the resident fauna and flora of the setting.