Kid Lit Review of “Redwoods” by Jason Chin

There is much to love about this magical book, but the best part for me is the fact that it features an Asian American protagonist, without making any reference to him or his race whatsoever. He is just any kid.

The story is about a little boy riding the subway who picks up an abandoned book about redwoods. As he reads, he is transported into a redwood forest as he, and we readers, learn all about these noble trees. At the end of the story, he leaves the book on a bench, and a little girl picks it up. Then she too enters the forest as she reads.

Lovely watercolors by the author/illustrator accompany the informative text, which accomplishes a number of things: it shows children how transformative books can be; it teaches them about redwoods in interesting and awe-inspiring (but simply stated) detail; and it suggests that, if shared, books can spread joy and vicarious adventure to everyone.

Product Details
Reading level: Ages 4 and up
Hardcover: 40 pages
Language: English
ISBN-10: 1596434309
ISBN-13: 978-1596434301

Rating: 4.5/5

Published by Flashpoint, an imprint of Roaring Brook Press, a division of Holtzbrinck Publishing Holdings Limited Partnership, 2009

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15 Responses to Kid Lit Review of “Redwoods” by Jason Chin

  1. Staci@LifeintheThumb says:

    The illustrations are amazing!!!!!!!!!! I love the whole idea of this book!!!

  2. BermudaOnion says:

    This looks like a marvelous book! I don’t understand why there isn’t more diversity in children’s books.

  3. Debbie says:

    It’s like ‘Book Crossings’ for kids. Looks like a beautiful book.

  4. Arti says:

    Sounds like a great book… and, you’ve brought out an excellent point. Treating people from various cultures as… just people, without drawing attention to their distinctive differences. I would have loved that if I were treated like that when I first came to Canada from Hong Kong as a teenager.

  5. Stephanie says:

    That looks like a wonderful book. The artwork is gorgeous.

  6. Sandy says:

    I just wanted to shout “Hallelujah”! Books do this every time you pick them up…they take you on adventures. And the illustrations are beautiful. What a wonderful book!

  7. the illustrations look really lovely!

  8. Julie P. says:

    This sounds delightful! Booking Son is on strike with books that aren’t “real.” I wonder if the info about the trees might tempt him.

  9. Vasilly says:

    I love this book so much! I’m glad you enjoyed it.

  10. Meg says:

    Oooh, will have to get this one and put it away for a rainy (baby) day! Having just visited the redwoods in May, I’m so intrigued by the trees now. They’re truly incredible, and it’s impossible to describe how big they are. My pictures don’t even begin to do them justice.

  11. Jenners says:

    The illustrations are lovely! I have yet to really experience a redwood forest … but it is on my bucket list.

  12. This sounds like a lovely book, especially with those beautiful pictures. I’ll have to see if I can get a copy for my kids.

  13. This looks like such a great books for kids. Thanks for highlighting it.

  14. Rachel says:

    Wow, those are gorgeous illistrations! Thanks for spotlighting this book.

  15. stacybuckeye says:

    Hmm. A little old for Gage, but one I should pick up. Two of his favorite friends are of the Asian persuasion (okay, one actually IS Chinese and will be moving back to Singapore this month :()

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