First community book event at Academy Street Middle School
Wishtree by Katherine Applegate

Courtesy photo

First community book event at Academy Street Middle School

Story By: ANTHONY PERROTTA
10/3/2019


Academy Street Middle School is hosting its first “One School, One Book, One Community” event, next Thursday, to celebrate the opening of its new library. 

The book of choice: Katherine Applegate’s “Wishtree.” 

Academy Street’s principal, Kerry Vann, said the school is excited to be hosting the first event of its kind, and is looking to include the rest of the community.

“From the selection of the book, to generating enthusiasm among the students and orchestrating the event, this has truly been a community effort,” Vann said. “[It’s] a great way to grow young readers and strengthen the ties between the school and the Bayport-Blue Point community.” 

“Wishtree,” published in 2017, tells the story of Red, a middle-aged—216 rings to be exact—red oak city tree. People write their wishes on pieces of cloth and tie them to Red’s branches every year. Along with animals that seek refuge in the tree’s hollows, Red watches over the neighborhood. 

But, when a new family moves into the neighborhood, not everyone is welcoming. It is at that point in which Red’s experience as a “wish tree” becomes more important than ever, as the neighbors look to find common ground and live peacefully. 

Applegate has written numerous other books for young readers, including “The One and Only Ivan” (winner of the 2013 Newberry Medal), “Crenshaw,” “Home of the Brave,” the Roscoe Riley series, “Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla,” and “The Buffalo Storm.” She is married with two children and lives in northern California.