Friday, March 31, 2023

Earth Day picture books that are entertaining and educational (Earth Day is April 22) [Review & Giveaway USA/CANADA]

The Tree and the River by Aaron Becker

ISBN: 9781536223293
Hardcover | $18.99

My thoughts:
  A wordless book! An Aaron Becker treasure! Every pictured wordless story by Becker I've had the pleasure of experiencing has been exceptionally astute. Exceptionally detailed.

A casual flip through of The Tree and the River shows the eon life of a mighty tree and the ever changing environs in which it is seated. The change with time as the tree grows, the river changes, and man comes and goes. Change. Sameness.

Becker's detail is immersive and captivating and engaging. And it drives the imagination to story time or fantasying. 

So what more do I think of this special book? I see that Becker has told the story of mankind from early days to vast civilization, from competing or warring to destruction. From beginnings to endings. From little or nothing to richness to destruction and loss, to emptiness and ruin, to beginnings anew.

Nothing is said of the why or the fault or the blame. Nothing about environmental changes and the reason for that change. Just the simple idea that there is change and it can be good and it can be bad but change is there. There is a beginning and a middle and an ending. And then there is a continuum or new beginning.

A pure delight and treasure to ponder over with meshing of young and old minds.

About the book: A spectacular time-lapse portrait of humankind—and our impact on the natural world—from a Caldecott Honor–winning master of the wordless form

In an alternate past—or possible future—a mighty tree stands on the banks of a winding river, bearing silent witness to the flow of time and change. A family farms the fertile valley. Soon, a village sprouts, and not long after, a town. Residents learn to harness the water, the wind, and the animals in order to survive and thrive. The growing population becomes ever more industrious and clever, bending nature itself to their will and their ambition: redirecting rivers, harvesting lumber, reshaping the land, even extending daylight itself. . . .

The Tree and the River is an epic time-lapse reimagining of human civilization from a master of the wordless form, and a thought-provoking meditation on the relationship between two mighty forces: nature and humankind.

One World: 24 Hours on Planet Earth by Nicola Davies & illustrated by Jenni Desmond

My thoughts:
  A beautifully illustrated picture book encompassing a global experience that introduces children to the concept of time zones around the world and how each zone experiences a single-frozen-moment-in-time simultaneously. Very nicely explained.

The book, however, is an immersion in climate change and the effect it has on the various pictured animals, vegetation, waters. In short, a "green earth" book rather than a time-zone book.

Of course, it is both concepts in one book, but I felt the green earth concept overpowering.

About the book: Take a magical ride around the globe to see the wonders of a single moment in a story illuminating our precious and fragile natural world.

Our planet is always turning. It may be midnight in London, but in different time zones other living things are waking up, ready to hunt or feed or fight. As the clock strikes twelve, two sisters are spirited away on a journey to glimpse, in the span of a moment, extraordinary biodiversity: a mother polar bear and her cubs hunting seals in Svalbard, tiny turtles in India following the moon toward the sea, and enormous whale sharks gulping plankton in the Philippines. Quietly profound, this glowing tribute to the natural world—and reminder of its fragility—blends accessible science, lyricism, sweeping artwork, and a call for climate awareness into an ideal companion book for Earth Day, or any wondrous day on Earth.

How Old is a Whale? by Lily Murray

My thoughts:
  This was quite the eye opener for me. I never realized that some living creatures on Earth lived such long life spans. Amazing. I knew some in the insect world were very short lived but these other long lived creatures amazed me.

This is an interesting book and will appeal to the intended age group (6 to 9 years) as well as adults who, like myself, will find themselves surprised by the long lived creatures.

A worthy book for home, school, and public libraries.

About the book: We are all on Earth but for a fleeting moment, yet no two lives are the same. From the delicate mayfly, which lives for just a few precious hours, to the death-defying immortal jellyfish, this book about animal life cycles is a celebration of creatures big and small.

Beautifully written by best-selling children's author Lily Murray, this book explores life spans across the animal kingdom, beginning with the very shortest and ending with the longest. Learn about the lives of the incredible monarch butterfly, the mysterious axolotl, the grand Galápagos tortoise, and many more in this uplifting and eye-opening book. Discover creatures who are born within a day of their mothers and others who stay infantile for almost one hundred years.

Stunning illustrations by highly commended artist Jesse Hodgson perfectly capture each animal in their natural habitat, making this both an ideal gift book as well as an educational read.

Cool Green: Amazing, Remarkable Trees by Lulu Delacre 

My thoughts:
  The illustrator's art style was not particularly to my liking. The illustrations were intended to show the unique design of these special trees, their foliage, and fruit. I found the book quite interesting as it presented the amazing diversity in trees and how there are some very unique trees on Earth. Some types one would imagine only in a long-ago Earth when dinosaurs roamed.

I like how the back information pages give additional insight into these unique trees.

The book is also a sweet generational experience of grandfather and grandchild where the gardener grandfather shares his love of plants and their propagation with the grandchild. 

About the book: A portrait of some of the world’s most incredible trees, seen through the eyes of a landscaper who loves them—and his granddaughter who is beginning to understand why.

Why am I in awe of trees?
Trees are astounding!
Let me share with you, mi niña,
some of the reasons why.

As he works with his young granddaughter to nurture a potted sapling, a Latino landscaper shares his love and admiration of trees. From the extraordinary rainbow gum tree to the mighty, towering redwood, each of the thirteen specimens he tells of is a miracle of the natural world—and some are strange beyond the wildest imagining. Brimming with exuberance and color, this ode to trees of the world—and the vast knowledge of landscapers and gardeners—offers a feast for the eyes, with author-illustrator Lulu Delacre paying touching tribute by imbedding seeds, fronds, and leaves within her art. Complete with an author’s note, glossary, and further information on the featured trees, Cool Green will have readers eager to turn the pages to discover each new reminder of what a precious place our earth is.

Begins March 31
Ends April 24 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT
Open to USA & CANADA
NO P.O.Boxes
Phone required for Canadian winners
DISCLOSURE: I received complimentary books to facilitate a review. Opinions are mine, alone and are freely given. Winner's prize is provided and shipped directly to the winner by publisher or publicist. Chat With Vera is not responsible for lost or misdirected prizes.


  1. I recycle, reduce what I buy, and re-use things and buy items that are gently used.

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  2. I recycle as much as possible. I walk or take my bicycle on short trips around the neighborhood. I plan my shopping trips to ensure I pick up everything I need in the one trip. I reduce energy use by turning off lights when not in the room.

  3. We do everything we can think of, and afford. Recycling, upcycling, using less plastic, repairing broken things, supporting ecology minded NGOs. Literally anything that might help. Thanks.

  4. Some times when you write it down does not feel or look like a lot. Big fan of goodwill I like find clothes, books glassware there. I don't buy water straight out of the tap. I recyle glass products

  5. Picked up groceries for a friend

  6. I have composted for 40 years

  7. I try to do as much as I can by: recycling, reusing, cutting up clothes for quilts, gardening, composting.

  8. We replaced all our lights with LEDs, we always turn off lights when not in a room, we reduce our water usage, Recycle as much as we can

  9. I do try to recycle as much as I can and conserve energy in my home. I also donate items so maybe someone else can reuse them. twinkle at optonline dot net

  10. Recycling; ensuring I'm not overusing resources.

  11. Readers, you are amazing with your efforts to conserve, recycle, preserve, re-do, reuse, etc. You're an inspiration.

  12. We recycle and plat veggies so we eat fresh.

  13. We recycle and plant a lot of our own veggies


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