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

Thursday 20 April 2017

Review: The Anzac Tree

Once in a while something special comes along; a unique treasure. The Anzac Tree is just that.

Filled with layers of history, timelines and individual family stories, The Anzac Tree is a reflection on Australia's war history.

Inspired by real people and events, The Anzac Tree tells the story of generations spanning over a century, through one family who sent their loved ones to war and those who remained behind to wait in hope of their return.

Before brothers Percy and Roy went to the First World War, they each planted a tree. Roy's tree grew strong while Percy's tree didn't survive. Roy returned from war but Percy didn't. As years pass by, the next generation gathers around Roy's tree to remember and reflect on the wars that were and how these continue to affect them.

I particularly love the way each family's account and their connection to war is told from a child's perspective from the two World Wars and the Korean, Vietnamese and Gulf Wars to the more recent Afghanistan War. As the children grow up, the next generation continues to tell the story; each distinctly different, with each era and each war.

Complementing the text are the gorgeous illustrated 'photographs' biographies and unique handwritings characteristic to each child narrator and their own stories.

Christian Booth has not only profoundly and poignantly told these stories of loss and relief, innocence and fear through the impact of war, but has done so respectfully without glorifying war.

The Anzac Tree is a beautiful blend of personal stories and Australia's history of war, told for children by children and a 'must have' in every Australian classroom.

Title: The Anzac Tree
Author/ Illustrator: Christina Booth
Publisher: Scholastic Australia, $24.99
Publication Date: 1 April 2017
Format: Hard Cover
ISBN: 9781760154226
For ages: 5 - 9 years
Type: Picture Book