Albert’s Tree by Jenni Desmond (Walker Books)

12592599_10153952505890446_6477619065595630659_n Jenni Desmond hasn’t just burst onto the picture book scene in recent years, she’s positively exploded!

With a wealth of formidable achievements already under her belt, including the Maurice Sendak Fellowship award, Desmond‘s picture books are works of art, from the enchanting ‘The Blue Whale‘ to the forthcoming ‘The Polar Bear‘, which looks sublime.

944844_10153952506020446_9122932548264280684_nAlbert’s Tree‘ is a tale of love and friendship between a bear and his dear friend, the tree. It’s the perfect tree. Not too soft, not too hard, too slippery or prickly. Just the right place for Albert.

But Albert’s tree just won’t stop crying. What on earth is the matter and how can Albert help cheer up his special friend?

12928326_10153952505985446_8199750638306145173_nDesmond’s use of texture, colour and composition make for a highly sumptuous read. Her bold and clever use of mixed media creates maximum impact on everything she illustrates.

The inky brown bear, looks good enough to hug and you can almost feel the rugged bark on the tree, whilst the reader can practically hear the rustle of the raw brush strokes of the greenery on the trees.12932970_10153952505925446_3577544332992466184_n

Bear tries asking his woodland friends how to make tree happy again. Each has their own interpretation of what makes them happy, but will it work for the tree?

As Bear tries everything to stop the tree crying he receives a little surprise which makes his tree even more special than it already is.

A tender tale about finding friends in unusual places and one that will undoubtedly be well received by children and adults alike.

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