The Taking Tree

The Taking Tree

A Selfish Parody

Illustrated by: Lucy Ruth Cummins
For Ages: 4 and up
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We all know the story of the "selfless" tree that gave all she had just to make sure a young boy was "happy".
Snore. This is a different tree. This is a different boy. This is a very different book.
The Taking Tree is not so happy when the boy takes her twigs to pick on his sister, or takes her apples to sell for college (she's an oak tree for goodness sake), or when he cuts off her branches to build a house that he burns for insurance money. And the boy is not sorry at all. Ever. In fact, he's kind of a jerk. And the boy asks for more, and more, and more until the oak tree is so fed up she just can't take it any longer. While another story might end sweetly with an old man sitting on a stump. This one does not.
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  • Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers | 
  • 48 pages | 
  • ISBN 9781442407633 | 
  • October 2010 | 
  • Grades P and up
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Read an Excerpt

Blood

Blood is my friend. Without it my cells shrivel. Without it I die.

At night, alone with myself, I hear it rushing through arteries and veins, platelets tumbling in a soup of plasma and glucose through slick, twisty tubes, lining up to enter narrow capillaries, delivering oxygen and fuel, seeking idle insulin. It is a low-pitched sound: wind passing through woodlands.

I hear a higher pitched sound too: A demon dentist drilling, rising and falling but never stopping. It is the sound of my thoughts.

Alone, at night, with myself, the low sound and the high sound become music. If I lie perfectly still and quiet the concert... see more

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