Wishtree book review

Claire Lawrence, Reporter

“Trees can’t tell jokes. But we can certainly tell stories. And if all you hear is the whisper of leaves, don’t worry. Most trees are introverts at heart.”


I was excited to read the book Wishtree, as the author is K.A. Applegate. She has written many best sellers, such as The One and Only Ivan. However, when I actually got to reading the book, I had some interesting opinions on it, so I thought I’d write a review about the book and what I thought of it. It’s important o know that I am not the target audience of the book, however, because I tend to like longer books targeted at adults rather than Young Adult novels. So here’s my opinion on it anyway, because I can still enjoy those types of books from time to time.


The book is told from the perspective of a tree named Red. In this universe, trees can talk but the unspoken rule of nature is that animals should not speak to any humans. This may seem simple, but it isn’t that easy for a wish tree. Basically, on the first of May, people attach cloth, sheets of paper, and tags to the tree with wishes on them in hopes they will come true. Most don’t come true, obviously, but its a tradition that stemmed from one wish that came true.

Samar is a newcomer to Red’s neighborhood, but things seem off as the neighborhood deals with new racism, a horrid word being carved into Red, and an owner who wants to cut down all the trees, including the wish tree. We follow Red as he observes everything happening while being (almost) helpless to stop it. After all, what could a tree do?

My opinion

I’ve read a lot of books recently that I wouldn’t normally read, but I will say that I’ve never read one from the perspective of a tree. Throughout the reading, I kept getting trumpet of the swan ( a book from my childhood) vibes. I’m not sure, why except that the books both outline a difference in “animal” worlds and human ones, even in the same settings. Although I don’t usually enjoy fantasy-like books such as these, this one was enjoyable for me because it really dealt with issues in humanity like racism.

However, it’s still a good book for anyone who enjoys those fantasy novels, too. The book hooked me so much, in fact, that I read the entire book on Christmas Evening 2018. I just sat on the couch and read, without the knowledge of time passing, etc. I really like books that do that, and it’s really rare for one to do that for me nowadays. So props for that. I also enjoyed the characters and a sense of setting you to get from the book, just small things that good writers do that I enjoy.

K.A. Applegate is a renown author, one of her books is the one and only Ivan which was very popular upon its release, and I’ve never met anybody who didn’t have praise for it.

Overall, the book was a bit predictable as YA novels tend to be, but it wasn’t bad, and I would recommend it to anyone who liked the one and only Ivan and books like that.