Illustrator: Charles Santoso
Ages 8-12 years
Every May 1 the Wise Old Red Oak tree becomes Wishtree. Following an old Irish tradition, people write their wishes on scraps of fabric and tie them to her branches, hoping that her magic will help them come true. Some see the tradition as a nuisance, especially the tree's owner who despises cleaning up after those who leave their "garbage" tied to the "rag tree"; however, others, like the new girl at school, Samar, see Wishtree as a place of hope. She ties her wish on the tree, asking for a friend.
This book tackles issues of racism while gently inspiring the reader with multilayered, unexpected friendships among humans and animals.
Review by Ann Westrick