This is my first Mildred Taylor. You may be familiar with her Newbery Medal-winning book Roll of Thunder Hear My Cry. The Song of the Trees is based on a true story told in Taylor’s family. The story takes place in rural Mississippi during the Depression. Cassie Logan’s father is away working to provide for his family. She lives with her mother, grandmother, and her brothers. Outside her window the forest serves as her playground, a place for discovery, and refuge. The trees sing and whistle for Cassie but one day while out with her brothers she notices that the trees are silent. Her brothers are aware of no such thing.
Mr. Anderson has come to buy the trees from Cassie’s family so that they can be cut down for lumber. The family could use the money but Cassie is greatly opposed and Big Ma has not yet made her decision. This is not enough to stop Mr. Anderson who begins to cut trees. Cassie must wait to see if patience and goodwill will save her beloved forest.
Jerry Pinkney’s illustrations are excellent. He also illustrated the edition of The Tales of Uncles Remus that I read earlier this year.