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Red and Lulu Hardcover – Picture Book, September 19, 2017

4.8 out of 5 stars 348 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreS-Gr 2—Surrounded by lights and singing, Christmas is by far the favorite season for Red and Lulu, a pair of cardinals living year-round in a big beautiful evergreen tree. Tragedy strikes late one autumn when the tree is cut down and hauled away with Lulu in it. Red chases the truck as far as he can, ending up lost and alone in New York City. When snow starts to fall, he seeks shelter by following the sound of a familiar song, "O Christmas Tree." He finds Lulu and his tree illuminated in Rockefeller Center, surrounded by a sea of happy people. A brief history of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree tradition, which started in 1931, is explained in an afterword. Tavares's detailed watercolor-and-gouache illustrations expertly capture the seasonal atmosphere, including the tension one feels as Red and Lulu are separated from each other. The happy reunion and resolution (including the fact that the tree is recycled and used to build homes for families in need and that the avian couple moves to Central Park) should reassure even the most sensitive of readers. VERDICT A lovely New York story for most holiday collections.—Madeline J Bryant, Los Angeles Public Library


Tavares (‘Crossing Niagara’) lets the holiday note waft lightly, bringing equal cheer to the celebration of pair-bonding and New York City.
—The New York Times Book Review

A really engaging visual reading experience – moving from overviews to close ups, vignettes to double page spreads. It’s a very dynamic read – dramatic and tender by turns. My kind of visual storytelling!
—David Wiesner

Tavares (Lighter than Air) captures Red’s frantic search for Lulu, following the truck to New York City...The birds’ reunion is poignant and well earned, and their decision to stay in the city after the holidays poignantly shows how seeming misfortune can lead to unexpected and rewarding opportunities.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Tavares’s realistic watercolor and gouache paintings make the most of dramatic birds’-eye perspectives, while the story provides a child-friendly backstory for an annual NYC holiday attraction.
—The Horn Book

Tavares’s detailed watercolor-and-gouache illustrations expertly capture the seasonal atmosphere...A lovely New York story.
—School Library Journal

…a joyful and affecting picture book written and illustrated by Matt Tavares.
—The Wall Street Journal

With its bird’s-eye views, this wonderfully imagined, gorgeously illustrated ode to the world-famous Rockefeller Center Christmas tree will have young travelers begging Mom and Dad for a trip to the Big Apple.
—USA Today

Gorgeous artwork, with multiple wordless-pages, advances the tale. Best of all, kids will cheer at the dramatic moment when Red finds Lulu.
—Washington Post

A Christmas book you should probably put on your permanent shelf...This is one of the best of the year.
—Betsy Bird, A Fuse #8 Production

A touching, beautifully illustrated story.
—Kirkus Reviews

Product details

  • Lexile measure : AD610L
  • Item Weight : 1.1 pounds
  • Grade level : Preschool - 2
  • Hardcover : 40 pages
  • ISBN-10 : 0763677337
  • ISBN-13 : 978-0763677336
  • Publisher : Candlewick; Illustrated edition (September 19, 2017)
  • Dimensions : 9.75 x 0.37 x 11.06 inches
  • Language: : English
  • Reading level : 3 - 7 years
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.8 out of 5 stars 348 ratings

Customer reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
4.8 out of 5
348 global ratings
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Top reviews from the United States

Reviewed in the United States on November 18, 2018
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Reviewed in the United States on December 28, 2017
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Reviewed in the United States on December 26, 2017
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Top reviews from other countries

Duck man
5.0 out of 5 stars Beautiful
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 20, 2020
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Reviewed in the United Kingdom on February 1, 2019
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5.0 out of 5 stars Fab story
Reviewed in the United Kingdom on April 2, 2020
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Stay at Home CEO
3.0 out of 5 stars So-so
Reviewed in Canada on December 15, 2019
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Paige Gaynor
5.0 out of 5 stars A new holiday favourite!
Reviewed in Canada on December 11, 2018
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