Official Review: The Talking Baobab Tree by Nelda LaTeef

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Erin Dydek
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Official Review: The Talking Baobab Tree by Nelda LaTeef

Post by Erin Dydek »

[Following is an official review of "The Talking Baobab Tree" by Nelda LaTeef.]
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4 out of 4 stars
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The Talking Baobab Tree is a children’s book written and illustrated by Nelda LaTeef. The story introduces young readers to Johari, the rabbit, who is lost in the desert and happens to find shelter in the shade of the mighty baobab tree. The tree passes on wisdom and, later in the story, Johari must use her wits to outsmart an adversary who is driven by envious motives.

I did not find it difficult to fall in love with this whimsical tale. It was beautiful to see and experience the story through the vibrant and colorful artwork throughout the book. The quality scrapbook-like illustrations combined with the handwriting-like font added texture and made me want to exchange the PDF version that I reviewed for a physical copy to add to my bookshelf. The pictures also made it fun to laugh at sweet little Johari’s reaction to the first words she heard spoken by the tree and marvel at the secret hidden within the baobab!

The book was also full of educational value despite the simplicity of the story. In the author’s note, LaTeef shares the history of the baobab tree, and she incorporates this information throughout the tale. She further explains visiting a Wolof village in the region of Dakar, Senegal, and hearing the story from which The Talking Baobab was derived. Additional information about the Wolof people was included in the author’s note as well.

I loved the Wolof proverbs woven throughout the text and felt that there were so many thought-provoking lines. LaTeef even included some Wolof words, including oubi, which means open and jerry-jef, which means thank you. When the story concludes, readers will see how the author applied the vocabulary within the context, revealing another profound lesson.

In reflection, I did not find anything to dislike about the book. The pages were well-edited, and I saw no countable errors. Therefore, I gladly reward The Talking Baobab Tree a 4 out of 4. Johari’s adventure is a great tale to be shared with young readers. The language is simple and easy to read aloud, so independent young readers may want to give it a try. Adults may also enjoy reading the simple story with their kids to discuss the outcomes and discover some great teaching moments.

The Talking Baobab Tree
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Post by Joseph_ngaruiya »

I will add it to my kids' collection bookshelves. Thank you for the review.
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Post by Ms_Rita30 »

Judging from my experience, children enjoy new knowledge the most when it's taught through a story. Learning a little about the Wolof people sounds promising. Great review!
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Post by Vic Chimezie »

Thanks for the detailed review. I am recommending this to my sister and her kids straightaway!
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Post by Josephe-Anne »

This sounds like a lovely story to teach both kids and adults about African flora, fauna, and culture. I agree with your comment about the illustrations and the font.

I like to collect physical copies of books too. There's something special about holding a tangible book and turning the pages... I may be old-fashioned, but it's a feeling that isn't matched by electronic books.

Thank you for an excellent review!
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Post by Gabrielle Sigaki »

A children's book with important lessons sounds great. The proverbs and the vocabulary seem to be good to teach kids as well. Thanks for the great review!
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Post by Valkyrie9 »

Wow! This sounds like a valuable resource for parents and teachers alike! It is always heartening to find a tale that is beautifully illustrated and well edited, as well as contains important lessons. Thanks for a great review!
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Post by Elvis Best »

The illustrations in this book sound out-of-this-world. I enjoyed reading this review. Good job!
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Post by Magnify3 »

I wish to read this book for myself now that I have read your review! Good job!
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Post by Chinelookeke »

Children would love to be told such stories. I would love to read it to them as well. Thanks for the nice review.
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Post by Lizziemarcel »

I love reading children's story books so, this is like one I would like so, I'll download it straightaway. Thanks for a great review.
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Post by alex986 »

:D I really love that story about the baobab talking tree this is not just for children it is also for adults
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Post by Christabel Uzoamaka »

I have always expressed my appreciation for children’s books that have deeper meanings and lessons for the kids. I like how culture is woven into this story. This looks like a piece the kids will enjoy.

Nice job with the review!
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Post by AvidBibliophile »

With the mention of whimsical trees, envious adversaries, and a wee rabbit named Johari, I’m hooked! Thanks for such a ‘hoppy’ review.
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Post by Priyanka2304 »

Kids would definetly have fun reading this book. Illustrations would keep them hooked. Thanks for the review
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