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Wednesday, August 22, 2018

Trevor, written by Jim Averbeck and illustrated by Amy Hevron. Roaring Brook Press, Macmillan. Raincoast. 2018. $24.99 ages 3 and up

"Trevor built a soft nest for
himself and his friend. The two
huddled together through summer
rains and enjoyed warm sunny days. So did the striped seed, which
sprouted and grew.

Each morning, Trevor and the
lemon performed a duet.
Trevor sang the notes.
chur weeeee chiddle chiddle "

Trevor is alone, knowing he can leave his cage at any time, but not wanting to as he loves the seeds in his dish. His most favorite are the ones with stripes; he keeps them for the days he feels the loneliness most acutely. He is also a bird who knows what to do when life gives you a lemon; embrace it and make it your friend.

That is exactly what he does when he wakes one morning to find a lemon hanging on the tree branch just outside his cage. Trevor does his best to strike up a conversation. The lemon remains silent. Trevor offers the seed he so treasures, putting it on the lemon's branch. The lemon offers nothing. Not to be deterred in his search for a friend, Trevor hops off the branch in search of another gift. He does not realize that he has knocked the seed of the branch as he moved.

Disappointed and blaming the lemon, Trevor experiences anger and then forgiveness as he realizes how lonely the world can be without a friend to share it. He builds the two a nest which provides a home. Trevor is content, until a storm blows the lemon from the nest and it is lost from sight. What happens next shows Trevor the meaning of real friendship!

Amy Hevron creates her gentle, loving scenes on wood using acrylic paints and then collaged digitally. Using yellow, green, blue and brown hues, she fills this sweet story with exactly the right feeling of clarity and warmth. The wood shines through exactly where it is needed, and makes for a natural backdrop.

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