“Imagine a city draped in a blanket of green … Is this the city you know?”
This beautiful book of narrative non-fiction looks at the urban forest, starting witha bird’s-eye view of the tree canopy, then swooping down to street level, digging deep into the ground, then moving up through a tree’s trunk, back into the leaves and branches.
It discusses the problems that city trees face such as the abundance of concrete, poor soil and challenging light conditions. It traces the history of trees in cities over time, showing how industrialization and the growth of populations in urban centers led to the creation of places like Central Park in New York City, where people could enjoy nature and clean air. It wasn’t until Dutch Elm disease swept across North America, killing hundreds of thousands of trees, that people realized how important trees are to our cities.
So how can we create a healthy environment for city trees? Some urban foresters are trying to create better growing conditions using specially designed soil trenches or planters, they are planting diverse species to reduce the harm of invasive pests, and they are maintaining trees as they age, among a number of other strategies.
The urban forest is a complex ecosystem, and we are a part of it. Trees make our cities more beautiful and provide shade but they also fight climate change and pollution, benefit our health and connections to one another, provide food and shelter for wildlife, and much more. It is vital that we nurture our city forests.
Includes a list of activities to help the urban forest and a glossary.
Andrea Curtis once planted trees in Northern Ontario and is now an author of books for children and adults. Her children’s non-fiction titles include Eat This!, which received starred reviews from Kirkus and School Library Journal, and What’s for Lunch?, named to VOYA’s Honor List. She has also written the young adult novel Big Water. Her adult books include Into the Blue, winner of the Edna Staebler Award for Creative Non-Fiction, and The Stop (with co-author Nick Saul), winner of the Heritage Toronto Award of Merit and a finalist for the Toronto Book Award. Andrea lives with her family in Toronto.
Pierre Pratt is the award-winning illustrator of more than seventy books for children. He has won the Golden Apple and Golden Plaque at the Biennial of Illustration in Bratislava, the UNICEF Prize in Bologna and a Totem at the Montreuil Salon du Livre in France. Other awards include the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, the TD Canadian Children’s Literature Award, the Mr. Christie’s Book Award, the Elizabeth Mrazik-Cleaver Award and the Governor General’s Literary Award (Illustration) three times. He has also been a finalist for the Hans Christian Andersen Award. Pierre divides his time between Montreal and Lisbon.
Praise for Andrea Curtis, Pierre Prat and A Forest in the City:
“The vital importance of the urban forest in relation to the welfare of city dwellers is presented with interesting information and lush illustrations. Useful for reports, projects, and classroom activities.” — School Library Journal
“[A] book for budding environmentalists” — Booklist
Praise for Andrea Curtis and Eat This!:
“Copious kid-friendly information on a vitally important topic, stylishly presented, makes this book essential. Knowledge is power.” — Kirkus, starred review
“With appealing design and timely, research-based information, this will be a welcome addition to most library collections.” — School Library Journal, starred review
Praise for Andrea Curtis and What’s for Lunch?:
“This survey of foods that international children eat for school lunch emphasizes differences while pointing to the interconnectivity of world ecology…. Curtis crafts a holistic conversation about health, poverty, and sustainability…” — Publisher’s Weekly
Praise for Emily Jenkins, Pierre Pratt and The New Animal:
“[T]he elongated style of the vibrantly colored artwork strikes just the right note of humor and whimsy.” — School Library Journal, starred review
Praise for Heather Tekavec, Pierre Pratt and Stop, Thief!:
“The full-color gouache art has a breezy immediacy that gives a sense of palpable movement as the dog dashes and the animals munch ..." — School Library Journal
Praise for Remy Simard, Pierre Pratt and Gustave:
“Strikingly illustrated in a painterly style reminiscent of Whistler’s nightscapes.” — Kirkus