Tree of Life: The World of the African Baobab

Barbara Bash, Author Sierra Club Books $14.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-316-08305-8
According to African legend, each animal was given a tree to plant by the Great Spirit. When the hyena was assigned the baobab tree, the careless animal planted it upside down--``and that is why its branches look like gnarled roots.'' With this intriguing bit of folklore, Bash proceeds to unfold the life cycle of this majestic bastion of the African savannah. Frequently measuring 60 feet tall and 40 feet across, these giants ``outlive nearly everything on earth''--their life span is over 1000 years. In this compelling and moving account, the baobab stands proud and stately as a vivid panoply of activity unfolds within its sprawling branches. With stirring landscapes and lavishly detailed closeups, Bash's realistic watercolors bring this profusion to vibrant life. Finally, an old tree dies and ``collapses in on itself, a melted heap of ruins.'' A seed sprouts, a new baobab tree begins to grow and life continues. One of nature's great lessons is recreated dramatically in this stirring book. Ages 6-10. (Dec.)
Reviewed on: 01/30/1990
Release date: 02/01/1990
Genre: Nonfiction
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-0-316-08322-5
Prebound-Other - 32 pages - 978-0-606-06827-7
Prebound-Sewn - 978-0-613-79300-1
Paperback - 32 pages - 978-1-57805-086-4
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