The Anzac Tree by Christina Booth

Based on real people and events, not many readers will keep a dry eye reading The Anzac Tree. Generations of one family sending their children to wars is beautifully and poignantly portrayed and is profoundly moving. So many mothers, fathers and siblings waiting for the return of these young soldiers from the different wars forms a history of loss and relief. Christina Booth tells these stories from the perspective of young brothers and sisters as they farewell and wait; and over the course of one hundred years their innocence and fears tell a heartbreaking story. At the end their experiences are summed up by one character: ‘Dad says war isn’t something to be proud of, but being brave enough to fight in them to protect other people is.’ Have the tissues handy! For ages 5 and up.

Alexa Dretzke is a Children’s & YA Book Specialist at Readings Hawthorn.