Monday, September 6, 2010

Inside you there is strength.

Shaun Tan's The Red Tree is one of those amazing children's books that transcends all age and generational barriers to speak to the world. Some say that it speaks of hope in a cruel world, others find it full of existential angst; yet most, if not all who find it, feel compelled to own it.

When I first found it tucked high on a shelf at the back of a bookstore, I knew I had to have it. The cover caught me, in fact it grabbed me by the chest and clung on until it had convinced me that I needed this book in my home.

I had no children, so many people did not understand my obsession with children's books, but this book, like so many others spoke to me.

It told me that sometimes bad stuff happens to good people and no-one seems to notice.

It told me that even though I could be drowning in sorrow, there was always something there for me to grab on to.

It told me that buried deep within me was a spark of strength that had seen me through the almost intolerable pain I was forced to swallow, and bury, each and every day.

It told me that this strength was something so magical, something so wondrous, that I only had to wait and I would be free to enjoy it.

You need this book in your collection, there is no other comment that will do this justice. The illustrations in themselves speak volumes. Shaun Tan's insightful comments manage to remind us all of the often bleak way the world behaves. It is up to us to change the world; one red tree at a time.


  1. Thank you for sharing what this book has meant and shown to you. Blessings.

  2. This book sounds extremely powerful and certainly worth reading. Thank you for sharing about the book and your personal review. Definitely one I'll be reading!!!

    I'm a new follower and think your background is really soothing. I'm going to like it here a lot :)

  3. Thanks for joining Jen. I look forward to your contribution.

    Thanks 'Real' Great to see you back.