Only the Trees Know by Jane Whittingham, illustrated by Cinyee Chiu


Only the Trees Know by Jane Whittingham, illustrated by Cinyee Chiu, Kids Can Press, 2022. 9781525304927 

Rating: 1-5 (5 is an excellent or a Starred review) 4

Format: Hardcover picture book

What did you like about the book? A young rabbit is experiencing his first winter – and not liking it.  Everything is white.  Most of his friends are sleeping below ground.  There is nothing to eat.  He is bored and cold. His parents tell him that “Winter will move on when it is ready. Spring will come in its own time.”  Grandmother Rabbit tells him that “only the trees know when.  Ask them, and they will tell you.”  Little Rabbit asks many trees but receives no answer.  He stands taller and speaks more loudly but the trees still do not answer.  Losing hope, the little rabbit falls asleep under a tree – and when he wakes he smells the soil and hears a bird singing.  It is spring at last.  The lovely winter-filled illustrations were created on paper with gouache and pastel and finished in Photoshop.  They are softly blue-ish white and filled with snow.

Anything you did not like about the book? No.

To whom would you recommend this book? A nice story for late winter when children are waiting for spring.  A nice addition to stories of the seasons.

Who should buy this book? Public libraries and child-care centers

Where would you shelve it? Picture books

Should we (librarians) put this on the top of our “to read” piles? No.

Reviewer’s Name, Library (or school), City: Katrina Yurenka, Retired Librarian, Contributor, Youth Services Book Review

Date of Review:  August 30, 2022

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