Daniel's Reviews > Tess's Tree

Tess's Tree by Jess M. Brallier
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's review
Apr 05, 2010

it was amazing

Tess's Tree is a special little book that speaks to all of us who have ever lost something or someone we loved. It's especially well suited for helping a young child come to terms with death for the first time without having to face - with all the implications it involves - the deaths of individuals such as family members, friends, or the child himself/herself. It's a beautiful story to share with your child because it says so much in so few words and illustrations.

Tess loves her tree. From her window, she watches it change with the seasons, and she has spent many happy hours swinging from the tree, playing in patches of its fallen leaves, etc. She is therefore devastated when the tree must be cut down after an act of Mother Nature. Naturally, her first reaction is anger, and she takes that anger out on everyone and everything around her. In time, though, she comes to reflect more on what her tree meant to her, and that is when she decides to have a funeral for the tree. The whole neighborhood is invited to the service, and the end result is that Tess discovers a great sense of community and comes to realize how important her tree has been in the lives of others, some of whom she never even knew. Tess' tree was not really her tree at all, and the grief she feels for its loss is not hers to bear alone. That is a very comforting message, and it is delivered beautifully and simply in this wonderful little book.
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