The illustrations fill the page and offer varying perspectives of the forest, sometimes from the ground and sometimes from afar. Many offer a closer inspection of the canopy with detailed artwork of lichens or small insects. VERDICT An engaging read-aloud, peppered with plenty of facts for the scientists in the crowd.—Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA
High among the coast redwoods, there exists a world within a world.These towering giants known as redwood trees, which line a stretch of land that hugs the Pacific Ocean, hold various other plant and animal life “high in their branches, hundreds of feet above the ground.” Called a canopy, this secluded world is home to shrubs such as elderberry and gooseberry and ferns mats “soggy and heavy,” as well as sow bugs and pill bugs, “the only crustaceans that live on land,” and Humboldt flying squirrels. McLennan’s trunks-to-lichens tour of the redwoods takes readers on a vivid voyage of discovery…Thanks to the vibrant, earthy pictures, the redwoods’ immensity and swarming life of the canopy are the highlights. Backmatter aimed at sparking “creative minds” adds opportunities to consider further. A busy redwood outing that will nevertheless stir readers’ curiosity.
The Forest in the Trees creatively writes about the canopy of redwood trees which so few are able to see. The mix of poetic and catchy writing for a younger audience, as well as factual information for an older audience makes this book interesting and engaging for all ages. Everyone can learn something from this book. Ms. McLennan does a great job of capturing an accurate picture of life high up in a redwood forest.
Informative sidebars accompany a cumulative verse, and vivid illustrations reveal a hidden habitat most human eyes have never seen, making "The Forest in the Trees" an ideal and unreservedly recommended addition to family, elementary school and community library picture book collections for young readers.
Since I live in the Pacific Northwest and love trees, this is an ideal book geared for children that teaches about the magnificent redwood trees and how their eco-system protects thriving insects, animals, and plants. The rhyme is cute while the sidebars of interesting facts are educational. I like the attention given to the highlighted words such as reiterations, canopy, humus, crustaceans, epiphytes, fern mats, and lichens. The drawings are detailed and eye-catching.
The Forest in the Trees introduces a new resident of the green forest high in the sky on each page and pairs the rhyme with more in-depth facts. I can admit I don't much about trees....so this title was a joy to read to my girls. This book has a way of making you eager to learn more when you are done!
If you're at all familiar with The House That Jack Built, you know it is a cumulative tale that builds upon itself with repetition. The Forest in the Trees is a book similar to that. Using the same cumulative format, The Forest in the Trees starts out describing redwoods and goes into the creatures and edibles that can be found there. So, each page builds upon the next.
Within the sidelines of each page are interesting facts about the coast redwoods, and the animals and plants found on them. For instance, readers will learn that salamanders breathe through their skin and mouths instead of lungs. They'll also learn that lichens are two organisms growing together, among other information.
There is a literal “Forest in the Trees” growing in this mystical canopy. Author, Connie McLennan, teaches about this magical place so high above the forest floor, in her book available through Arbordale. Love the inclusion of poetry alongside this informative text. A truly fascinating and educational read for young and old alike. As with all Arbodale titles, “The Forest in the Trees”, includes a For Creative Minds section that contains more learning opportunities.
It’s fun to read, with one level of text building layer upon layer using “the house that Jack built” structure. A second level of text is found in sidebar boxes, additional information for older readers and parents who want to know more about the animals and plants living high on the redwood’s branches. And there is back matter: four pages of activities and challenges “for creative minds”.
Verdict: this book is a must for both the library and the classroom. Both fascinating and factual it will be enjoyed by anyone who picks it up. For those of us living in the Pacific Northwest – this is our backyard!