The City Tree (Hardcover)

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The City Tree By Shira Boss, Lorena Alvarez (Illustrator) Cover Image
By Shira Boss, Lorena Alvarez (Illustrator)
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In this enchanting and informative picture book with environmental themes, a newly planted sidewalk tree transforms the neighborhood as residents nurture it through the seasons. Vibrantly illustrated and with extensive back matter, this is a lovely ode to how trees make cities—and communities—better. Perfect for fans of The Night Gardener and The Curious Garden.

Dani lives on a city block carpeted with concrete—until a street tree moves in. 

The tree brings the wonders of nature to Dani’s doorstep and is good company through the days and seasons. But it will need help to thrive . . .

This love letter to the many gifts of trees reminds us to take care of our neighbors—even those with roots, branches, and leaves.

  • An inspiring story that will empower young readers to engage in climate activism and plant and nurture trees.
  • A perfect Earth Day pick.
  • Spectacular artwork depicts a vibrant, diverse neighborhood.
  • Includes back matter that invites kids to care for the trees in their own neighborhood.

About the Author

Shira Boss lives in New York City, home to 234 species of street trees! Her favorite is the dawn redwood, a conifer that drops its needles in fall. She learned about the special lives of street trees from the urban arborist Bob Redman. Shira wrote about Bob’s childhood in her picture book Up in the Leaves: The True Story of the Central Park Treehouses, a Junior Library Guild selection. The couple shares their tiny Upper West Side apartment with two sons, one whippet, about 150 library books at a time, and nine species of trees in their roof garden. Visit Shira at 

Lorena Alvarez is a freelance illustrator based in Bogotá, Colombia. Her work has appeared in children's books, independent publications, advertising, and fashion magazines. She is the author-illustrator of the graphic novel Nightlights.

Praise For…

"A simple story of a tree which transforms into a glorious celebration of life, growth, and community." — School Library Journal (starred review)

"Dani forms a bond with the sole tree that is planted in their urban neighborhood; this is a good introduction to the concept of greening city streets for the youngest children. Tranquil and calming, this is an ideal bedtime read." — Kirkus Reviews

"Bustling city scenes center the tree not as backdrop but as full-fledged neighbor, reinforcing the text’s encouragement of stewardship." — Publishers Weekly

"Detailed digital illustrations reflect subtle changes over time: everything becomes brighter, more colorful, and more joyous. The story winds down over the course of four double-page spreads depicting a year of poignant seasonal shifts on the street. Back matter includes information about street trees and their care along with additional resources."   — Horn Book Magazine

Product Details
ISBN: 9780358423416
ISBN-10: 0358423414
Publisher: Clarion Books
Publication Date: April 4th, 2023
Pages: 40
Language: English