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Tap the Magic Tree Hardcover – August 27, 2013

99 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreS-K–The conceit of this clever picture book is that the changing seasons occur as if by magic. Readers are shown a bare brown tree and are implored to, “Tap it once. Turn the page to see.” As they do, green leaves appear. Next, they are told to “Rub the tree to make it warm.” That results in pale pink buds, which then form beautiful blossoms and a jiggle makes them fall to the ground. Darker leaves mingle with robust red apples, and then leaves turn color, drift away, and snow falls all around. Finally, the tree finds a new purpose as a home for a baby bird. Each change receives its own spread, and a page turn reveals another alteration to the tree's appearance. A few words on each spread keep the emphasis on readers' perceived control over the climate; a call to participation encourages audience involvement. “Pat the leaves–be gentle, please. Aha! Now blow a whooshing breeze.” Spare backgrounds maintain the focus on the tree; its thick, supportive trunk remains the solid recurring note in each stark scene. Textured collages add immediacy to each spread. A natural rhythm is maintained through rolling rhymes. The subtle shifts of the seasons capture a tree that is simply a treasure to behold.–Meg Smith, Cumberland County Public Library, Fayetteville, NCα(c) Copyright 2013. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

“There’s magic in this bare brown tree. Tap it once. Turn the page to see.” Tapping the page, and rubbing and touching starts the fun of watching a bare tree sprout one leaf, then many, then buds, flowers, and finally apples. After jiggling, wiggling, and swishing the pages, the flower petals fall and apples appear; shaking the book causes the apples to drop with a “Plop! Plop! Plop!” Whooshing makes the leaves cascade, and clapping causes snowflakes to flutter down. The tree is bare and brown again, but “Be patient . . . Close your eyes and count to ten,” and the mystery begins again with two bluebirds building their nest in the spring. When each season changes, a full page of color introduces it—green flows to pink to red to orange to wintery blue and white. Although simple in presentation with ample white space, the artwork provides a glorious rendition of the four seasons of a tree. No iPad is needed to make this interactive book totally satisfying. Pair with Lizi Boyd’s Inside Outside (2013), another seasonal interactive title. Preschool-Kindergarten. --Lolly Gepson
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Greenwillow Books (August 27, 2013)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0062274457
  • ISBN-13: 978-0062274458
  • Product Dimensions: 9.5 x 0.2 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.1 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (99 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,347 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Wiley Blevins on September 2, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Every once in a while you pick up a new picture book and instantly know it will become a classic. This is how I felt when I discovered TAP THE MAGIC TREE at my local bookstore. With simple text and illustrations, the book introduces the concept of the seasons to young readers. What makes this book special is the interactivity--begging the reader to tap, shake, and blow a kiss to make the tree "magically" change. Young readers will want to read this book over and over to enjoy this interaction, which really does feel a bit magical. I hope this is the beginning of many books from this talented author/illustrator!
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16 of 16 people found the following review helpful By Jessica R. on September 4, 2013
Format: Hardcover
My 2 year old and 4 year old absolutely love this book! Each page contains sweet instructions (like tapping the tree or blowing the leaves) that result in a change to the tree (such as apples growing, or the leaves falling off) that you see when you turn the page. My children like to hide their eyes when I turn each page, are delighted when they see the "effect" of their actions. I highly recommend this beautiful and engaging book!
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11 of 11 people found the following review helpful By Ruth W. on September 3, 2013
Format: Hardcover
My two daughters love this book. It is a beautifully illustrated story following a tree through the seasons, done in a very engaging way that has the girls enthralled at each page as they're asked to tap, jiggle, knock and blow the tree through its different stages. Their favorite parts are turning the buds into flowers and 'shaking' the apples off the tree. I love the fact that it has a simple message, yet manages to be interactive without any gadgets, gizmos or electronics. It's a breath of fresh air!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By J.Prather TOP 1000 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on September 14, 2013
Format: Hardcover
Every young child should get to Tap The Magic Tree! I have never seen such a clever, concise explanation of the seasons that is so spot on perfect for even the youngest readers. Each two page spread delivers instructions to the reader which result in changes to a plain, bare brown tree. We follow the tree through leaves, buds, blooms, fruit, fall, and snow. Perhaps my favorite part is the end, when the book instructs us to be patient, "Close your eyes and count to ten", "Magic! It begins again."
Some may argue that equating the natural process with magic is misleading, but I would say that it merely promotes the wonder that exists in nature, making it accessible to the very young.

The design and illustrations in this book are simple and inviting. The many comparisons to Tullet's wonderful book Press Here are certainly valid, given the many opportunities for interaction. I feel that this book takes those concepts a step past the abstract, adding warmth and realism and a firm connection between book and reader that will serve to delight young book lovers for many repeat reads. This is a classic and a must have for any toddler, preschool, or early elementary student collection.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Cancer Survivor on October 7, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is a CHARMING book absolutely made for sitting with a young child on one's lap to read. The notion that the child "makes" the story happen by tapping on the pages is magical and creates a nice surprise for the child (and the adult!). It is a quiet book, full of feeling and wonder. (To preserve the wonder, I put this away for special reading times.)
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By catalog on August 27, 2013
Format: Hardcover
This book is geared to younger children so will be a favorite storytime book at our library. Very interactive and also teaches about the seasons. A book to enjoy!
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By peggy R. on October 7, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I Love this book!!! I bought it for my grand daughter and we have had so much fun with it. A magical journey, beautiful drawings.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By B Zim on September 30, 2013
Format: Hardcover
My son (5) and daughter (2) really enjoyed reading this book together. The book asks you to tap the tree, jiggle it, blow kisses at it, etc. and at the next page you can see that the picture has changed. It makes them really excited to think that they changed the tree and to see how it progresses through the seasons. Lovely, simple format - a favorite of my kiddos.
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