The Happiest Tree
Meena is excited about the class play, a “new and improved version” of Red Riding Hood. But after spilling paint on the set, she feels too clumsy to participate. Her teacher talks her into a part as a tree, but Meena stumbles during rehearsals, cementing her view of herself as uncoordinated and bumbling. Then, while shopping at the Indian market with her mother, she spots a yoga class for kids and signs up. She practices yoga and gradually gains confidence, and on the play’s opening night, she uses what she has learned to play the perfect, grounded tree. [The] balanced compostitions and bright colors nicely echo the warm, encouraging story about overcoming challenges, while the well-integrated details of Meena’s Indian culture, including a few terms, are rare and welcome in books for this age group.