By: Julie Jakeman
Publication Date: September 5, 2022
Reviewed by: Holly Connors
Meet Tandi, a beautiful toucan who is about to take children on a fascinating journey through her home in the Brazilian rainforest as she, and readers, learn about deforestation and what can be done to halt its destructive forces.
Tandi, a brightly colored toucan, is enjoying her day along the river where she lives. Her home, the rainforest, is full of life of all sorts – both animal and plant. We meet snakes, monkeys, and even jaguars and learn how the Amazon is “…a tangled web of trees and plants and vines,” and how all those living there depend on this intricate balance to sustain them.
But there’s a problem in the rainforest that has Tandi worried. She’s noticed that people have been coming into the forest and cutting trees down and taking away the wood. The forest is shrinking, and it appears that if it continues, her home may disappear. Tandi sees some heavy-duty trucks move in and then workers with chainsaws appear and cut down all the trees. It’s even worse, says Tandi’s friend the frog who tells Tandi:
“It happens all around the world,”
The frog said with a croak.
“They chop and burn away all day.
It’s gone beyond a joke.”
And then Tandi gets some more bad news:
A tamarin came on the scene,
her baby on her back,
“Without the sturdy trees,” she said,
“The earth just seems to crack.”
Tandi, and indeed all the animals, are worried. What can they do? Will the destruction stop before it’s too late?
Author Julie Jakeman has written a sweet and instructive story about the deforestation of the Amazon that children can easily understand. It clearly lays out the problem, showing readers what exactly is happening and how those things lead to the destruction of rainforests around the world. While the story tackles a serious topic, it manages to stay upbeat and positive throughout. Tandi learns about the destruction of her home, but also discovers how some people are working to restore the forests by planting new trees. The story is written in rhyme and in this tale, the rhyme works perfectly – no strained lines where the text doesn't quite fit. Finally, the illustrations are lovely – bright, bursting with detail, and just plain fun. What a great book to share with someone special who may want to learn about forest life or simply loves stories about animals.
Quill says: The Adventures of Tandi the Toucan is a delightful story, beautifully illustrated, that clearly shows children the dangers of deforestation and what can be done to stop and reverse the damage before it is too late.
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