Red and Lulu: Separation and miles cannot keep a determined cardinal from his loved one in an ode to serendipity and belief that is destined to be a Christmas classic. Red and Lulu make their nest in a particularly beautiful evergreen tree.
Red and Lulu:
Separation and miles cannot keep a determined cardinal from his loved one in an ode to serendipity and belief that is destined to be a Christmas classic.
Red and Lulu make their nest in a particularly beautiful evergreen tree. It shades them in the hot months and keeps them cozy in the cold months, and once a year the people who live nearby string lights on their tree and sing a special song: O Christmas Tree, O Christmas Tree.
But one day, something unthinkable happens, and Red and Lulu are separated. It will take a miracle for them to find each other again.
Luckily, it’s just the season for miracles.
About the Author & Illustrator:
Matt Tavares created his first picture book as his senior project in college. That book eventually became Zachary’s Ball (Candlewick), which received a Massachusetts Book Award Honor, and was named one of Yankee Magazine’s 40 Classic New England Children’s Books. Since then, Matt has illustrated nineteen more books, nine of which he also wrote. Three titles received Parents’ Choice Gold Awards, two were named ALA Notable Books, one was an Orbis Pictus Honor Book, and eleven were selected for The Society of Illustrators Original Art exhibits. Learn more about him here.
A Few Reviews:
“Surrounded by lights and singing, Christmas is by far the favorite season for Red and Lulu, a pair of cardinals living year-round in a big beautiful evergreen tree. Tragedy strikes late one autumn when the tree is cut down and hauled away with Lulu in it. Red chases the truck as far as he can, ending up lost and alone in New York City. When snow starts to fall, he seeks shelter by following the sound of a familiar song, “O Christmas Tree.” He finds Lulu and his tree illuminated in Rockefeller Center, surrounded by a sea of happy people. A brief history of the Rockefeller Center Christmas tree tradition, which started in 1931, is explained in an afterword. Tavares’s detailed watercolor-and-gouache illustrations expertly capture the seasonal atmosphere, including the tension one feels as Red and Lulu are separated from each other. The happy reunion and resolution (including the fact that the tree is recycled and used to build homes for families in need and that the avian couple moves to Central Park) should reassure even the most sensitive of readers. VERDICT A lovely New York story for most holiday collections.” —Madeline J Bryant, Los Angeles Public Library
“A really engaging visual reading experience – moving from overviews to close ups, vignettes to double page spreads. It’s a very dynamic read – dramatic and tender by turns. My kind of visual storytelling!”—David Wiesner
“Tavares captures Red’s frantic search for Lulu, following the truck to New York City…The birds’ reunion is poignant and well earned, and their decision to stay in the city after the holidays poignantly shows how seeming misfortune can lead to unexpected and rewarding opportunities.” —Publishers Weekly
“Tavares’s realistic watercolor and gouache paintings make the most of dramatic birds’-eye perspectives, while the story provides a child-friendly backstory for an annual NYC holiday attraction.” —The Horn Book
“Tavares’s detailed watercolor-and-gouache illustrations expertly capture the seasonal atmosphere…A lovely New York story. —School Library Journal