Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
- Age: 4 to 8
- Grade: k to 5
A gentle meditation on the cycle of life, told by two trees
One day, a tiny pine seedling strikes up a conversation with a nearby tree. As the seedling grows larger, the older pine shares what it has learned about the strong wind that blows through the forest. Wind stretches trees and dries them out, but it also scatters seeds, spreads messages across the forest, and helps trees grow strong as it pushes against their trunks.
As time passes, the wind takes its toll on the older tree. It loses needles and starts to droop as the young tree grows fuller and stronger. When a fierce storm rolls in, the heavy winds take down the older tree, leaving the younger one all alone. Or so it thinks. Soon after, a new seedling blown in by the wind lands on the spot where the old tree fell, and the cycle begins again.
This moving picture book poignantly honors intergenerational relationships and the exchange of wisdom, while also opening up conversations about loss and environmental stewardship.
About the author
TODD STEWART is an illustrator and a self-taught screen printer in Montreal, Quebec. Trained as a landscape architect and urban planner, his images are culled from experience and surroundings, and reflect a search for meaning in new and familiar places. The Wind and the Trees is his first book as both author and illustrator. He is also the illustrator of Flow, Spin, Grow and See You Next Year.
- Commended, A CBC Best Canadian Picture Book of 2021
- Short-listed, Governor General’s Literary Awards
- Commended, Best Books for Kids and Teens
- Commended, A Kirkus Best Picture Book of 2021
"A perfect complement of eloquent words and stunning illustrations."
"This conversation between two pine trees speaks to the power of nature ... Full of movement and the drama of nature."
Sal's Fiction Addiction
"A profound story about the circle of life and bestowing the ultimate gifts of love and wisdom."
Let's Talk Picture Books
"Striking in presentation – the artwork! the colors! – and in its paired-back but impactful storytelling, The Wind and the Trees is a a standout picture book."
Fab Book Reviews
"Arresting art and an intelligent dialogue speak movingly to the realities of universal life cycles."
Kirkus Reviews - STARRED REVIEW
"A quiet, lovely book which explains the nature of trees to a young audience."
Youth Services Book Review
"Timely, poignant, and most welcome ... A universal tale of the circle of life, a lovingly told homage to the steadfast magic of nature and the interconnectedness of all things."
Canadian Review of Materials
"This spare, contemplative picture book focuses on a compassionate intergenerational relationship, transcending scientific instruction to offer a metaphysical musing on life and death."
Publishers Weekly - STARRED REVIEW
"A beautiful tale of resilience, survival, and acceptance ... This text is ripe with symbolism, and its pages are laced with vibrant illustrations. It’s a treasurable pick."
Seattle Book Review