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The Ever-Living Tree: The Life and Times of a Coast Redwood Hardcover – March 1, 1994


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Walker & Co; First edition (March 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0802782779
  • ISBN-13: 978-0802782779
  • Product Dimensions: 11 x 8.6 x 0.3 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,140,696 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

In an effort to convey the phenomenal 2000-year life span of a coastal sequoia, Vieira dates the stages of a tree's growth by making references to historic events. However, her ungainly presentation swamps the reader with blandly related, far-flung facts linked only by their synchronicity. The tree, for example, sprouts near the period of Alexander the Great (who "perfected catapults in battle" and "spread the ideals of Greek civilization"); when China builds its Great Wall, the sequoia's deeply ridged bark looks "like an apartment house for spiders." Lightning strikes and fells the tree (around the time "gold was discovered in the western territories of the New World"), but its life force continues to nourish new trees. While the text mentions the native Ohlone tribe, the essentially Eurocentric approach begs for balance. First-time illustrator Canyon's carefully organized and fittingly framed paintings help somewhat to focus the reader's attention, but on the whole the work is dull. Ages 5-8.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Kindergarten-Grade 3-One redwood's growth, from its beginning in 325 B.C.E. to its fall 2,100 years later, is correlated with major world events. These historical happenings are pictured on the margins of paintings that show all the grandeur of the tree and the inviting mystery of the forest in which it grows. A lengthening time line on the upper left corner pinpoints the year. The beginning of construction of the Great Wall of China in 214 B.C.E., the birth of Jesus of Nazareth, and the flourishing of African trade in 700 C.E. are among the dates noted. Reminiscent in the best sense of Virginia Lee Burton's Life Story (Houghton, 1989), this title also conveys an awesome feeling of time passing on a large scale.
Sharon Levin, Waters Memorial Library, Underhill, VT
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Lora N. on September 15, 2007
Format: Paperback
There's something about the way the story of this tree is tied in with world history that touches me. The pictures are highly appealing. Each two-page spread is almost it's own little story as it tells what is happening to the tree in that time period. So very young children (perhaps 4-6 year olds) can enjoy each little story individually, older children and even adults can connect these stories to the sweep of history.

An unobtrusive but helpful timeline runs across the top of the two-page spreads and builds as the years go by. There is a dinosaur and a reference to 50 million years ago on the first page which young earth creationists should be aware of. The dino is not really part of this tree's story but a mention. The timeline that builds throughout the book starts with 325 BC. and ends in 1969 (yes, one tree's life!).

This book (typically a read in one sitting) would supplement world history, a study of forests, and/or certainly a trip to the redwoods in California! But most of all, it's just a delightful pleasure to read.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By B. A. Smith on May 4, 2013
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
I bought this book after realizing it had been abridged to be included in our fourth grade reading curriculum. To see all of the pictures and read every paragraph was a great addition to my students' understanding of history, especially since one of their questions had to do with counting time back from the "common era" and also forward. In its need to be politically correct, the publishing company of our literature book excluded reference to the birth of Jesus of Nazareth. To explain either counting system (BC-AD or BCE-CE), there of necessity has to be a reference to the Man. To read the entire text was very helpful and the addition illustrations were "icing on the cake."
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Format: Paperback
From my teenage years and throughout my own life, "Life of an Immortal" has been the "grounded" story I go to for inspiration. For the longest time I didn't even know who the author was. Other reviews with less than five stars were obviously from city folk who have obviously never visited a redwood forest, but even I, a young soldier right out of Vietnam, caught on to the sheer poetry of this story where I lived in Minnesota, some 20 years before I would even see a redwood forest. For those not familiar with literary poetry, largely a story that evokes emotion because a more average reader can readily identify with the content, this story probably does not ring of any identity the reader could comprehend. This is the story of an entity far removed from humans on the evolutionary path (tree). But if you are interested in evolution, science, history or just plain interested in nature generally you will find this story captivating and indeed it will become one of your favorites. For those less than captivated with this story because your mind gets confused as the book "wanders" from nature to human history and you don't understand the cue, try an added cue. Read this story to your children while playing Rimsky Korsakov's 1001 Arabian Knights and then you'll get it. I am surprised that no one has picked up this story and made it into a movie.
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0 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Irene A. Koehler on November 23, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was sent directly to a sibling and was a gift for someone else - so I'm unable to rate it. It would be nice if you could change your "rating" selections to be a bit more flexible.
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