The Lonely Jacaranda is a wonderfully illustrated book which tells the story of a Jacaranda tree that is planted away from her home. A stranger takes her away from her home and plants her seed in front of his house. He did this hoping that the Jacaranda seed would grow into a big tree providing some shade and colour. He had hoped for a big and purple tree. But the seed grew slowly since being away from home it was lonely and sad. The Jacaranda tried to make friends with other trees and introduces herself but the other trees mock her for shedding all her leaves. Even the birds do not rest upon her branches. A grey Butcherbird comes up with a fantastic plan and asks the birds to eat the fruit of the Jacaranda tree and drop the seeds for more trees to grow. Soon there are more trees and the Jacaranda is not lonely any longer. It has a family of its own. Together the trees are admired and praised for their lovely purple flowers. Word spreads and the city has visitors especially to see the trees.
The Lonely Jacaranda is a marvelous book to read. The story is simple but has deep meaning and several layers for the discerning reader. On one hand it speaks of migrants or people who are settling down at a new place. The Jacaranda tree is reflective of the hardships and obstacles a person encounters while settling and laying roots. It is difficult to make new friends and break down communication barrier, and be accepted as part of the community. On the other hand, it reads like a beautifully illustrated fable which gives the lesson and value of caring for one other. How lending a helping hand can create ripples of support thereby having better and more outreach. It also speaks about how it takes time for a tree to grow outside its native place. Such plants should be dealt with utmost care and nurture.
I recommend this book to everyone, especially to schools to teach the value of caring and looking after one another. The language is simple and easy to read. Adding charms to the text are the watercolor illustrations which give it a dreamy feel.
I received an advance review copy for free, and I am leaving this review voluntarily.