Children’s Book Review: Pando

Pando: A Living Wonder of Trees 

by Kate Allen Fox (Author), Turine Tran (Illustrator)

Book review by Andrea Koehle Jones, children’s environmental education advocate, author and founder of The ChariTree Foundation. 

“Near a humming highway, a giant forest stands firm. Thousands of trees—almost exactly alike—whisper in the wind…”

Explore one of the world’s oldest and largest living things — a single quaking aspen named Pando. At first you might think this is a book about a really, really big tree. Turns out Pando is actually an Aspen grove that grew from one seed into 47,000 clones sharing a single root system!

Pando: A Living Wonder of Trees is an outstanding children’s STEM book about connectivity and resilience. Majestically illustrated by award-winning artist Turine Tran and filled with the latest tree science, Pando is an inspiring tribute to a Utah grove of quaking Aspen.

Author Kate Allen Fox beautifully blends nonfiction and poetry to introduce young readers’ to the wonder and vastness of Pando, the challenges it faces, and how we all can stand up for Pando and be part of the solution. 

She also provides readers with easy to understand, well-researched, tree facts at the back of the book.

Pando is an intriguing example of how we all may seem to stand alone as individuals but really we are all in this together.

“Like trees linked by their roots, people, animals, and plants are all connected. We can make a world where we all have room to grow.”

I hope kids (and adults) everywhere get a chance to read Pando. I love trees and I love this tree book!

Themes explored:

  • tree science and ecology and that nature isn’t always what it seems
  • forest connectivity and cooperation
  • compassion for trees
  • tree conservation (You can help save Pando by supporting various environmental organizations like Western Aspen Alliance.)

????? 5/5?

Preorder hardcover copies Pando: A Living Wonder of Trees from your local indie bookseller, Amazon or Barnes & Noble.

Tree friendly, paper-free Pando e-books are available now on Amazon and Barnes and Noble.

Image: Pando: A Living Wonder of Trees by Kate Allen Fox and Turine Tran ⓒ Capstone Editions

About the Author

Kate Allen Fox is a children’s author from Southern California. After a career as a public health professional, she combined her passions for research and writing and began writing picture books about science and nature.

Her debut picture book, Pando, A Living Wonder of Trees, will be published by Capstone in 2021. Her writing has appeared in several publications, including The New York Times.

About the Illustrator

Award-winning artist Turine Tran takes inspiration from children, friends, nature, and her happy childhood. Through nostalgic, dreamy images, Turine invites readers to a world where a tiny wildflower can become a fantastic wonder.

Born and raised in Saigon, Vietnam, Turine began her art study in 2001. Her journey led her to Singapore, France, and Scotland, where she obtained a masters of art degree in illustration from the prestigious Edinburgh College of Art. She went on to earn a PhD in the field. Besides making books to delight children and adults alike, Turine teaches illustration and is learning to cook and garden. She lives in Saigon with her two dogs.

Title: Pando: A Living Wonder of Trees 
Publisher: Capstone Editions (August 1, 2021) 
Literary Agent: Mary Cummings of Betsy Amster Literary
Publication Date: August 1, 2021
ISBN: 1684462770
For ages: 8 - 11 years
Type: Nonfiction picture book 


All environmental children’s book reviews by Andrea Koehle Jones.

Andrea receives review copies from publishers and authors from time to time, with no implied promise that the books will be reviewed favourably or at all.