The Book Tree by Paul Czajak and Rashin Kheiriyeh
AUTHOR: Paul Czajak
ILLUSTRATOR: Rashin Kheiriyeh
PUBLISHER: Barefoot Books
AGE RANGE: 4-9
When young Arlo accidentally drops a book on the Mayor’s head, the Mayor decides books are dangerous and destroys all the books in town! But thanks to Arlo’s imagination and perseverance, the Mayor finds that suppressing stories cannot stop them from blossoming more beautifully than ever. This timely allegorical tale will be a useful tool for starting conversations with children about the power of activism and the written word.
WHY I LIKE THIS BOOK:
The Book Tree, written by Paul Czajak and illustrated by Rashin Kheiriyeh, is one of my favorite recent reads. The lyrical language, gorgeous illustrations, an important message make this picture book a wonderful addition to the home library. There are so many moments in this book that tug at your heartstrings. Young readers will feel Arlo’s sadness when books are banished. And they will cheer him on when he brings books back to life. The Book Tree celebrates imagination and reinforces the importance of literature.
“This delicious and subversive little parable of a book, with its lyrical text and anarchic pictures, is just what we need in today’s world. It reminds us that words matter, stories matter, books matter. And it does so in a childlike (but never childish) way.”
– Jane Yolen
“My favorite part is when more people become book gardeners.” -Sophie, age 6
Rashin Kheiriyeh’s art is a perfect fit for this story. I’m a huge fan of the #kidlitwomen movement. Illustrators like Rashin Kheiriyeh should be celebrated for their brilliance. And she is brilliant.
“I like that the books from the tree are in different languages.”- Mason, age 10
The Book Tree will sprout an even greater love and appreciation for books. Read this one with the kids in your life, and encourage them to tell their own stories.
Rashin Kheiriyeh is an internationally recognized, award-winning illustrator/author, animation director and painter who has published seventy children’s books in countries such as the United State, France, Italy, Japan,Germany, Spain, South Korea,China, Brazil, India and Iran. She has received Fifty national and international awards for the books and animations including recently being winner of the 2017 Sandak Fellow Award, New York. She was also the winner of the Bologna Book Fair, Italy for Six times and the winner of Golden Apple Award at the Biennial of Illustration Bratislava (BIB), Slovakia. She has an Honorary Doctorate Degree in Illustration and MFA in Graphic design from Alzahra University, Tehran, Iran. She also studied at School of Visual Arts (SVA) in New York. She is a lecturer at Department of Art, University of Maryland. Rashin enjoys illustrating for the New York Times, Google and many other publication houses around the world.
Paul Czajak got an ‘F’ with the words “get a tutor” on his college writing paper and after that, never thought he’d become a writer. But after spending twenty years as a chemist, he knew his creativity could no longer be contained. Living in Massachusetts with his wife, and two little monsters, Paul has rediscovered his passion for writing and looks forward to sharing his stories for years to come.
Learn more about Paul’s work:
Website: Includes information about school visits, resources for writers, and free coloring pages.
Follow Paul on Social media:
Kirkus review of The Book Tree
The Book Tree book trailer
The Book Tree is available for pre-order:
Other books by Paul:
Monster Needs a Costume, Monster Needs His Sleep, Monster Needs a Christmas Tree, Monster Needs a Party, Monster Needs Your Vote, and one of my absolute favorites: Seaver the Weaver.