cover image My Grandpa, My Tree, and Me

My Grandpa, My Tree, and Me

Roxanne Troup, illus. by Kendra Binney. Yeehoo, $17.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-9534-5855-1

A child’s tending a pecan tree their grandfather planted for them forms the basis of this educational tale centered on backyard vs. commercial agriculture. “Grandpa’s orchard is full of pecan trees—some older than he is. But my tree is his favorite,” says the book’s unnamed child narrator, who presents as Black. “Every winter... Grandpa prunes his orchard until each branch feels the sunlight.” She adds, “But not my tree”—a four-word refrain that echoes throughout—“My tree has lots of space to spread its branches.” Troup provides detailed descriptions of the differences between large-scale and individuated caretaking across the seasons, offering a portrait of familial, as opposed to commercial, care for the child’s sapling. The text’s quiet lyricism is reflected in Binney’s misty, soft-hued digital illustrations, which focus on the title figures and the landscape. Back matter defines farming terms and highlights the overlooked contributions of an enslaved man whose grafting technique is responsible for today’s bountiful pecan harvests. Ages 4–8. (Apr.)