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Children's Fiction Boys & Men

In the Tree House

by (author) Andrew Larsen

illustrated by Duýan Petricic

Kids Can Press
Initial publish date
Apr 2018
Boys & Men, Siblings
  • Paperback / softback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2018
    List Price
  • Hardback

    Publish Date
    Apr 2013
    List Price
  • eBook

    Publish Date
    Dec 2013
    List Price

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Where to buy it

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels

  • Age: 3 to 7
  • Grade: p to 2
  • Reading age: 3 to 7


As this enchanting picture book begins, a young boy is fondly remembering last summer, when his dad built an awesome tree house in their backyard. “My brother and I spent most of that summer in the tree house. It was the best summer ever.” Sadly, everything has changed this year. His brother is now “too busy with his friends” to come to the tree house at all. But then one night the power unexpectedly goes out while the young boy is there by himself, and he's treated to an amazing view of his neighborhood, blanketed in darkness and lit only by the stars. And then, just as unexpectedly, his brother appears, wanting to join him, to savor the magic of the night.

Author Andrew Larsen has created a fantasy-inducing (what child doesn't pine for a house in a tree?) and emotionally satisfying story that young children will want to revisit again and again. His unique use of the first person to tell the story along with his simple, spare style evocatively relates the feelings the young boy has toward his special corner of the world and his older brother, without being overly mushy. The emotional poignancy is further enhanced by Duýan Petricic's expressive and detailed artwork. This book makes a great resource for lessons on community, siblings or growing up. Separately, this book could also be used for classroom discussions about the environmental issues connected to the rate and severity of blackouts in recent years.

About the authors


Andrew Larsen est père au foyer et auteur. Quand il était enfant, il passait toujours une partie de son été au chalet de ses grands-parents, situé sur une colline, près d'un lac. Andrew habite à Toronto. Il a publié sept albums jeunesse.


Andrew Larsen is a father, homemaker and author. When he was a child, he would spend a part of every summer with his grandparents at their cottage on a hill, by a lake. Andrew now lives in a downtown Toronto neighbourhood. He has published seven picture books.


Andrew Larsen's profile page

Duýan Petricic is the award-winning illustrator of more than twenty books for children. His books include In the Tree House, The Enormous Potato, Bagels from Benny and Lickety-Split. He currently lives in Toronto, Ontario.

Duýan Petricic's profile page


  • Winner, Jean Throop Book Award, Municipal Chapter of Toronto IODE
  • Winner, TD Canadian Children's Literature Award, CBC Fan Choice Award, Canadian Children's Book Centre Awards
  • Short-listed, Shining Willow Award, The Saskatchewan Young Readers' Choice Award
  • Winner, Best Books of the Year for Children and Young Adults, Bank Street Children's Book Committee
  • Short-listed, Blue Spruce Award, Ontario Library Association
  • Winner, Book of the Year 2013: Books for Young People, Quill & Quire

Editorial Reviews

The powerful story is made more so by the expressive illustrations of masterful Serbian-Canadian artist Duýan Petricic.

Quill & Quire

Heartfelt and subtle.


Larsen's text is full of delights, simple sensory details that capture a mood. ... To these crisply written words, Petricic brings his own rich dimension of narrative and character.

Quill & Quire, Starred Review

... cheerily illustrated ... this picture book captures ... the thrill of brotherly camaraderie ...

The Wall Street Journal

The layout of this small, oblong picture book is attractive, and the story is pleasant.

School Library Journal

Other titles by Andrew Larsen

Other titles by Duýan Petricic