Like Magic! Tap the Magic Tree by Christie Matthewson
THERE'S MAGIC IN THIS BARE BROWN TREE.
TAP IT ONCE.
TURN THE PAGE TO SEE.
The book is not magic, but that bare, brown wintry tree is, because spring is coming. And with one page turn, the tree spouts four soft, green leaves.
A warming rub from the readers' fingers brings the tree to full leaf, and just a touch on the next page shows seven pink buds which turn into a tree filled with full-blown blooms.
GIVE THE TREE A LITTLE JIGGLE.
The tree drops its petals all over the ground, and the reader is asked to brush them away and to blow the tree a tiny kiss.
Voila'! Nice red apples appear on the tree, and a knock-knock on the trunk brings down six beauties. Kerplop!
A gentle pat on the leaves help turn them yellow, and orange and brown leaves appear only to drop to the ground, too.
The tree is bare and brown again, but with a little help from its friends (blowing a wish), beautiful sparkling snowflakes fall to adorn the tree through its winter sleep.
Are the readers out of a job then?
With a little help, dear readers, it's time for bluebirds to return to work their magic, so that the cycle can begin all over again, as green leaves begin to bud, in Christie Matthewson's Tap the Magic Tree (Atheneum Press, 2014). Author-illustrator Matthewson's art is sparklingly styled to reveal the essence of the iconic tree, lovely and inventive. Using the currently popular device of the faux interactive book to involve readers in this narrative of the changing seasons. Matthewson's text plays with the idea of the reader's magical touch setting off the changes of the season rather than the more technical explanation of the lengthening and shortening of the sun's rays, making this book a just-for-fun look (no battery recharging required) at the life of a tree through the seasons.
Kids less fascinated with trees and more turned on by the fantasy of interacting with a book will love Herve' Tullet's innovative Press Here and Bill Cotter's similarly premised Don't Push the Button! (read reviews here).