Once there was a tree

N. Romanova

Book - 1985

An old stump attracts many living creatures, even man, and when it is gone, a new tree attracts the same creatures, who need it for a variety of reasons.

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Location Call Number   Status
Children's Room jE/Romanova Checked In
Picture books
New York : Dial Books 1985.
Main Author
N. Romanova (-)
Other Authors
Gennadiĭ Spirin (illustrator)
Item Description
Translation of: Cheĭ ėto penʹ?
Physical Description
24 p. : col. ill. ; 26 cm
Contents unavailable.
Review by Booklist Review

Ages 3-9. To whom does a tree in the forest belong? ``To all, because it grows from the earth that is home for all.'' Exquisite, full-color paintings and an elegant design enhance the short, repetitive, memorable text.

From Booklist, Copyright (c) American Library Association. Used with permission.
Review by School Library Journal Review

Gr 2-4 With its exquisite endpapers, elaborate picture borders and richly detailed oil paintings, Once There Was a Tree seems to hold great promise. But a ponderous narrative and a didactic conclusion mar the book's potential. The story focuses on a tree which is struck by lightning during a violent storm. A woodsman discovers the broken tree and saws it down to its stump. One by one, a beetle, ants, a bear, a titmouse, a frog and an earwig make the stump their own. But who really owns it? ``Maybe the tree stump belongs to allthe beetles and the ants. . .and even the man. All must live together.'' The message is conveyed without subtlety; the narrative is further impaired by its rigidly sequential telling. Lacking both character development and any meaningful exchange between characters, the story falls flat. Indeed, children will wonder what happened to the bear when the bird came along, or to the bird when the frog took over. Devotees of the illustrated book will savor the elaborate design of this one, but the story's heavy theme (possibly due to its Russian origin) will limit its appeal to children. Anne E. Mulherkar, formerly at District of Columbia Public Library (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

(c) Copyright Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.