Friday, February 18, 2022

Review - Once Upon a Forest

Once Upon a Forest

by Pam Fong
Date: 2022
Publisher: Random House Studio
Reading level: C
Book type: picture book
Pages: 40
Format: e-book
Source: library

This gorgeous picture book follows a helpful marmot working to save a forest recovering after a wildfire. Perfect for teaching children to practice kindness while developing an appreciation for animals and the earth.

After a fire leaves the forest smoldering, a determined marmot and her resourceful bird friend set off on a rescue mission in this beautifully illustrated, wordless story.

They clear away fallen branches and scorched bushes. They rake and dig and plant new seedlings in the earth. With determination and ingenuity, as the seasons pass, they care for the little trees by making sure they have enough water, protect their branches from the wind and snow, and keep away hungry creatures, until the trees can thrive on their own.

With a little time, care, and hope we all can help the earth.

(synopsis from Goodreads)

Sometimes a wordless picture book is a nice change of pace. Just relax and let the pictures tell the story. Once Upon a Forest is the tale of a marmot who lives in a cute little log cabin (with her bird friend living in their own house just outside the front door). One day, they see smoke and witness a wildfire in the distance. So they pack up some seedling, tools, and supplies and head down there, only to discover the charred remains of a patch of forest. They plant the seedlings, then keep them safe through the seasons until they're strong enough to stand on their own. Finally they head home, having helped one little patch of the world heal.

The illustrations are cute but simple, done in black and white with only a few touches of colour (mostly green). The story is clearly conveyed, even without words.

Overall, this is a cute little book with sweet characters and a nice message. I'd recommend it to fans of wordless picture books, as well as to those looking for books with themes about conservation and the environment.

Premise: 4/5
Meter: n/a
Writing: n/a
Illustrations: 4/5
Originality: 3/5

Enjoyment: 4/5

Overall: 3.8 out of 5

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