Review Blog

Mar 18 2014

The Magic Bojabi Tree by Dianne Hofmeyr

cover image

Ill. by Piet Grobler. Frances Lincoln Children's Books, 2013. ISBN 9781847802958.
(Age: 4+) Highly recommended. Cultures. Africa. Animals. What a wonderful book to read aloud. It has all the magic ingredients to make it a classic favourite - a flowing story that paints fabulous images in the reader's mind and vibrant illustrations that bring the African landscape alive.
There is a drought in the plains of Africa and Elephant, Giraffe, Zebra, Monkey and Tortoise are desperate for something to eat. They find a magic tree that is covered with ripe red fruit but Python has wrapped himself around it and won't share unless the animals can tell him the tree's name. Each animal goes off to ask the Lion, the King its name, but each animal forgets the name when it returns to the tree until Tortoise the slowest of them all, sings a special song to help him remember.
The prose is beautifully written and the traditional story is so gripping. Each animal has a separate personality, amplified by Grobler's illustration, and the reader and listener will have fun following its path to the King, who is also portrayed magnificently. The repetition in the story will delight young readers, and it will be fun for them to see if they can remember the name of the tree when the animals forget. The detail in the illustrations make them a joy to look at again and there is lots of humour as well.
Both Hofmeyr and Grobler have been on the IBBY Honours list for their work and The magic bojabi tree will add to their illustrious reputations. This is a book to treasure both at home and in any library.
Pat Pledger

BUY IT NOW ON booktopia
Archived Blog Entries
Latest News
International Children's Book Day 2nd April, 2017
CILIP Kate Greenaway Medals 2017 longlist
CILIP Carnegie Medal longlist 2017
Branford Boase Award 2017 longlist
Children's Book Award 2017 shortlist
Infographic: Teen reading habits
Victorian Premier's Literary Awards 2017
Newbery and Caldecott Medals 2017
ALA awards 2017
Costa Children's Book Award 2016
National Simultaneous Storytime 2017

ReadPlus Features
Print similar authors bookmark
Read similar authors
How to find lesson plans
Sample theme animation

Promote Reading
Staff holiday reading list 2016
South Australian Christian Schools Conference 2016 - Library Displays
Display calendars
Science fiction and fantasy lists SAETA conference 2015
Value of School Libraries
Library, Reading development and the Internet
Free Rights of the Reader Poster
Reviews: Author index
Books for boys
Bookmark and poster templates