Mum, Me and the Mulberry Tree

Mum, Me and the Mulberry Tree
Tanya Rosie and Chuck Groenink
Walker Books

Rituals are important and this lovely gentle book evokes the joys of simple childhood rituals as shared between a mother and child one day; rituals that will become cherished memories as well as giving pleasure in the here and now.

We follow the two from sunrise to sunset as they relish a day trip to the countryside, a special journey that takes them by bus to visit a large mulberry tree that stands on a hill in a field – ‘our tree’. Once there, the mother lifts her child high into the canopy of the tree and together they gather its abundant mulberries, eating some and getting juice all over themselves.

When they stop for a picnic lunch, down comes the rain so the two hurry back to sit sheltered beneath their tree. After lunch Mum cannot resist climbing the tree to search for more berries till as the sun sets, the two, tired but very happy, travel home together.

Back indoors Mum assisted by her daughter, gets to work preparing and baking a pie

which they sample together before the sleepy, pie-filled child is taken to bed ready to dream of her happy mulberry day.

Tanya Rosie’s lyrical text is a delight to read aloud and the calming nature of her writing makes the book an ideal bedtime share. Equally though, this would be a lovely story to share with a class of young children. Warmth radiates from Chuck Groenink’s illustrations, be they double spreads, single images or smaller framed scenes, they show so well the close relationship of mother and child and are the ideal complement for the words.

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