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The Taking Tree : A Selfish Parody
by Shrill Travesty and Lucy Ruth Cummins


Overview - We all know the story of the "selfless" tree that gave all she had just to make sure a young boy was "happy."
Snore. This is a different tree. This is a different boy. This is a very different book.
The Taking Tree is not so happy when the boy takes her twigs to pick on his sister, or takes her apples to sell for college (she's an oak tree for goodness sake), or when he cuts off her branches to build a house that he burns for insurance money.
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More About The Taking Tree by Shrill Travesty; Lucy Ruth Cummins
 
 
 
Overview
We all know the story of the "selfless" tree that gave all she had just to make sure a young boy was "happy."
Snore. This is a different tree. This is a different boy. This is a very different book.
The Taking Tree is not so happy when the boy takes her twigs to pick on his sister, or takes her apples to sell for college (she's an oak tree for goodness sake), or when he cuts off her branches to build a house that he burns for insurance money. And the boy is not sorry at all. Ever. In fact, he's kind of a jerk. And the boy asks for more, and more, and more until the oak tree is so fed up she just can't take it any longer. While another story might end sweetly with an old man sitting on a stump. This one does not.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9781442407633
  • ISBN-10: 1442407638
  • Publisher: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers
  • Publish Date: October 2010
  • Page Count: 48
  • Reading Level: Ages 4-UP


Related Categories

Books > Juvenile Fiction > Nature & the Natural World - General
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Social Issues - Values
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Humorous Stories

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2010-09-20
  • Reviewer: Staff

This isn't the first parodic tweak of Shel Silverstein's classic, but it certainly sets a new standard of blithe snarkiness. "The tree was his best friend," writes the nom-de-plumed Travesty of the bratty protagonist. "Which shows what a loser the kid was." The tree, which frankly hates the child (who only gets meaner with age), feels hostage to his selfish and often criminal bidding ("he couldn't get away from him. She was a tree"). Blisteringly sarcastic throughout (when the boy asks for the tree's apples to pay for college, she responds, "I'm an oak tree.... When have you ever seen me grow apples?"), the tree finally embraces the full meaning of "passive-aggressive. "he took the kid's credit cards and ordered a bunch of DVDs she had no intention of watching. And she took the kid's cell phone and called the cops." Debut illustrator Cummins's deadpan cartooning never flags (one visual joke takes aim at the 2008 Republican presidential ticket); her addition of a scraggly and highly expressive mouth to the beleaguered tree's otherwise featureless trunk makes the fear and loathing even funnier. All ages. (Oct.)

 
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