'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Saturday 21 November 2015

Review: House Held Up By Trees

When the house was first built, it stood on a big patch of bare earth. No trees, no plants, no grass--all had been pulled to make way for the house.

Either side of the large plot of land, stood thick forest and a tangle of under plants, and over time, through the summer, seeds would float closer to the house and plant themselves nearby.

This growth continued year in, year out, and when the children of the house were themselves grown, their father sold the house, and it fell into ruin.

Over the years, this lonely, neglected house was overrun by seeds--by plants and trees, lifting it high above the plain below. And if you drive by today, you may just see this treehouse, still suspended on high.

What kid wouldn't like to live in that house?

This is a gentle, magical story about the cycle of life and the passage of time. It's a relatively high-text picture book that would suit older independent readers very nicely. Despite it's text length, the words are lyrical and narrative in tone, making it a great book to read aloud in class.

What can I say about the illustrations in this book other than the fact that they'll take your breath away? Luscious, textured, a muted colour palette that Klassen does so well. Stunning perspectives and rich yet simple layouts with smatterings of seed and birds and leaf on the air--almost tangible sensory elements heightened by the beautiful uncoated paper of the book's pages.

A modern classic. Just beautiful, and a must-add to your library.

Title: House Held Up By Trees
Author: Ted Kooser
Illustrator: Jon Klassen
Publisher: Candlewick, $27.95 RRP
Publication Date: 1 March 2012
Format: Hard cover with dust jacket
ISBN: 9780763651077
For ages: 6 - 12
Type: Picture Book