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The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein
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The Giving Tree (original 1964; edition 1964)

by Shel Silverstein, Shel Silverstein (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
8,802417343 (4.31)86
Member:JackieL1
Title:The Giving Tree
Authors:Shel Silverstein
Other authors:Shel Silverstein (Illustrator)
Info:Harper & Row (1964), Edition: First Edition, Hardcover, 64 pages
Collections:Your library
Rating:
Tags:Children Fiction

Work details

The Giving Tree by Shel Silverstein (1964)

  1. 70
    The Little Prince by Antoine de Saint-Exupéry (the_awesome_opossum)
    the_awesome_opossum: Two children's books that both emotionally "grow up" as the reader does
  2. 21
    The Lorax by Dr. Seuss (snozzberry)
    snozzberry: Another great book about the importance of trees.
  3. 00
    Mr. Fooster Traveling on a Whim by Tom Corwin (bertilak)
  4. 00
    Our Tree Named Steve by Alan Zweibel (snozzberry)
    snozzberry: Another great picture book about an important tree.
  5. 12
    The Iliad and the Odyssey by Homer (teresasobral)
  6. 01
    Owen by Kevin Henkes (lbush005)
    lbush005: Did a children's story project in college class, a class mate did her project on this story. Great morals!!
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» See also 86 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 411 (next | show all)
Another of my all-time favorite books, 'The Giving Tree' speaks strongly of love. Not romantic love, but agape, unconditional love. I understand that people's opinion of the book diverge. The more you blame the boy, the more you have to fault human existence. The more you blame the tree, the more you have to fault the very idea of parenting. Should the tree's giving be contingent on the boy's gratitude? If it were, if parents waited on reciprocity before caring for their young, we would all be doomed.
Silverstein's wonderful fable is empathetic and open-ended. It reflects humanity's short-sighted, often lifelong inability to distinguish want from need, but it does not damn us for it. ( )
  crunchymunchkin | Feb 27, 2015 |
I had mixed feelings about this book after reading it. I liked it because it showed how selfish children can be, and I loved the way the tree was a symbol of a giving parent. That was so beautiful, and it was a perfect example of a parent’s relationship with an ungrateful child. But I didn't like this book, because I thought it displayed a bad message for children. I really didn't like how there was so much sadness in the book, although it displayed an evident message, throughout the book. The main idea of this book was to always appreciate your parents. It also sends a message to children, for them to not be selfish with their parents.
  pbusto1 | Feb 26, 2015 |
This book is great for children since it teaches them about friendship. It also teaches them to give and not expect anything in return, but it also shows that giving to much can somethings be a negative thing. I like this book because readers can connect to it in multiple ways. Some readers see it as friendship, while other see it as a bond between mother and child. The author does a great job at keeping the book open to interpretation by keeping the pictures simple and although it doesn't include color, the tree stance always reveals it's emotions.
  bmille16 | Feb 26, 2015 |
This book shows the life span of a tree and a boy. Throughout the book the young man uses this tree to gain wisdom and receive help. The man realizes that life is not about receiving you have to give too.
  chretaylor | Feb 25, 2015 |
Christlike parable of unconditional love or disturbing glimpse at the desert of yearning that lies at the core of the borderline personality? I STILL DON'T KNOW! ( )
  MeditationesMartini | Feb 25, 2015 |
Showing 1-5 of 411 (next | show all)
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Once there was a tree...
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This is the main work, it is NOT the latin equivalent which falls under the dead language exception and should NOT be combined with this work. Take it to the Combiners! group before continuing.
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Book description
The Giving Tree is a story about a tree who is willing to give everything for this one boy. As the boy grows older into a teenager, adult, and an old man, the tree gives him some part of it. The story is showing the importance of generosity and how we should be generous so that we can make others happy. Eventhough the tree is only left with the base of its trunk in the end, both the tree and the old man get what they both want--tree wants to have more take with the old man, and the old man wants a place to relax and sit.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Amazon.com Review (ISBN 0060256656, Hardcover)

To say that this particular apple tree is a "giving tree" is an understatement. In Shel Silverstein's popular tale of few words and simple line drawings, a tree starts out as a leafy playground, shade provider, and apple bearer for a rambunctious little boy. Making the boy happy makes the tree happy, but with time it becomes more challenging for the generous tree to meet his needs. When he asks for money, she suggests that he sell her apples. When he asks for a house, she offers her branches for lumber. When the boy is old, too old and sad to play in the tree, he asks the tree for a boat. She suggests that he cut her down to a stump so he can craft a boat out of her trunk. He unthinkingly does it. At this point in the story, the double-page spread shows a pathetic solitary stump, poignantly cut down to the heart the boy once carved into the tree as a child that said "M.E. + T." "And then the tree was happy... but not really." When there's nothing left of her, the boy returns again as an old man, needing a quiet place to sit and rest. The stump offers up her services, and he sits on it. "And the tree was happy." While the message of this book is unclear (Take and take and take? Give and give and give? Complete self-sacrifice is good? Complete self-sacrifice is infinitely sad?), Silverstein has perhaps deliberately left the book open to interpretation. (All ages) --Karin Snelson

(retrieved from Amazon Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:52:22 -0400)

(see all 7 descriptions)

A young boy grows to manhood and old age experiencing the love and generosity of a tree which gives to him without thought of return.

(summary from another edition)

» see all 3 descriptions

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