The Dancing Trees
Thomas heads into the woods, leaving his trash along the way and tying strings to the tree branches so he can find his way back out. He builds a lean-to for the night, but the forest is upset by the way he takes, wastes, and litters, so the trees with the strings move away. When it begins to rain, Thomas decides to leave, but his strings are gone. He remembers what his family has taught him and picks up his garbage and thanks the forest for the things it gives. When he wakes the next morning, the trees with strings are back and he is able to find his way out - with a new outlook on the woods.
What I loved: These colorful illustrations capture the story well, with a lot of detail to enjoy on each page. The book has some core lessons about humility, truth, and taking care of the planet that are really important. The story is longer in length, with some scary parts where he feels lost, so this would appeal more to older picture book readers, who can internalize the important messages. Notably, this story is written by an Inuk/Dene author.
Final verdict: A cautionary tale about the importance of caring for the world around you, THE DANCING TREES is an intriguing picture book read that will work best for older readers.