In Focus Forests: Wilderness, Wonders, Wildlife

In Focus Forests is an accessible and unique non-fiction book. Although there is a distinct lack of an overall introduction to the book, there is an impressive amount of interesting information here. Aside from the stories of trees and forests, there are facts on animals, history and science, as well as information on weather, geography, culture and people. This bulk of information is ingeniously arranged and displayed by having each ‘chapter’ designed as a double gate-fold (a double-page spread with a full page fold-out on either side). What this means to the child is that there are sturdy, fun flaps to unfold, and to the parent-reader, it means that the book is easy to dip in and out of as the child’s attention wavers. So, it’s a win – win!

While the names of the 10 talented illustrators who have contributed to the book might look more like an invitation list for a quilting bee, all the artists’ work is actually quite harmonious and they add up to make a beautiful and gently textured visual experience.

The highlights of the book include an expanding rain forest section, a blurb on sea otters and a review of forest mythology. The ending is excellent as well, as it underscores the many benefits of forests while encouraging conservation and replanting. This amazing book come highly recommended for lots of ages.