7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #577: Featuring Charlotte Voake

h1 March 11th, 2018 by jules


I may have said this a thousand times before here at 7-Imp, but I love the work of illustrator Charlotte Voake.

Her newest picture book is Chris Butterworth’s The Things That I Love About Trees (Candlewick, February 2018). Here, Butterworth pays tribute to trees through the seasons, beginning with Spring. We see a young girl leave her home (I love that it’s an apartment complex — she may not have her own yard, but one can always seek out trees) and head out with her cat — or at least a neighborhood cat — to explore.

As with several books that Voake has illustrated (such as this one), the larger text on each spread carries more of the narrative, and the smaller text provides informational facts. (I love that the book has a small index on the final spread that says: “Look up the pages to find out all about these tree things. Don’t forget to look at both kinds of words — this kind and this kind.”


“The flower buds on this plum tree are opening into blossoms,
which are buzzing with bees . . .”

(Click to enlarge spread)


We read about trees and their blossoms (flowers and fruits); tree seeds; how they grow; what lives in them; how they change throughout the year; how they move; and how beautiful they are! All of this is from a child’s point of view — observant and wondrous, never cloying. Voake’s ink and watercolor illustrations are eloquent, as always. This child-friendly story is just right for budding naturalists.


“Summer trees are shady and so full of leaves that when the wind blows,
they swish like the sea.”

(Click to enlarge spread)



THE THINGS THAT I LOVE ABOUT TREES. Text copyright © 2018 by Chris Butterworth. Illustrations copyright © 2018 by Charlotte Voake. Reproduced by permission of the publisher, Candlewick Press, Somerville, MA on behalf of Walker Books, London.

Note for any new readers: 7-Imp’s 7 Kicks is a weekly meeting ground for taking some time to reflect on Seven(ish) Exceptionally Fabulous, Beautiful, Interesting, Hilarious, or Otherwise Positive Noteworthy Things from the past week, whether book-related or not, that happened to you. New kickers are always welcome.

* * * Jules’ Kicks * * *

1) My oldest daughter turns 14 tomorrow! I love her sharp mind, her gentle soul, and her appreciation of morbid humor.

2) I was floored when I saw that Sam Beam (a.k.a. Iron & Wine) recorded a cover, embedded below, of one of my favorite (and little-known) songs on the planet. Love those lyrics. Love them so much. So glad that covering it gives a shout-out to the band who wrote it (The Innocence Mission), a favorite of mine.



3) It’s official: New music from Neko is coming!

4) I love that, recently, Colbert had John McWhorter on his show. John runs one of my favorite podcasts, Lexicon Valley. (If I could live parallel lives, I’d be a linguist. That is, when I’m not being an art historian. Of course, I’d have to get degrees in these things, but hey, parallel lives means more time, right? )



5) Discovering, just in time for my daughter’s birthday, that there are TWO new Squirrel Girl books (this and this). (She’s a ginormous fan.)

6) My daughters will be happy to know this about Angel Catbird.

7) Dinner with a friend.

What are YOUR kicks this week?

6 comments to “7-Imp’s 7 Kicks #577: Featuring Charlotte Voake”

  1. Butterworth has created a gorgeous book. Perfect for Arbor Day next month.
    Jules, happiest birthday to oldest girl. Neko is coming to the NW but it’s not a time I can go.
    My kicks:
    1. A daffodil from a student.
    2. An Audacity Jones bookset arrived in the mail from thr author. I won it.
    3. Friends.
    4. Local haiku anthology is coming together.
    5. Clear skies.
    6. Finished Lily and Dunkin by Donna Gephart.
    7. Participating in Solsc18 with Two Writing Teachers.
    Have a great week.

  2. Good morning, Imps! Hello, Charlotte! Hello, neighborhood cat!

    Jules: Happy birthday to her! I hope she has a wonderful day. 🙂 You ARE an art historian and a linguist, just in your own way.

    Jone: Congrats! Yay for good things.

    My kicks from the past week:
    1) Good stories
    2) Good songs
    3) Bread
    4) Conversations
    5) Memories
    6) Reminders
    7) Forward

  3. What a perfect celebration of trees! Especially loving that gorgeous enormous tree on the cover, and the summer tree with the kids and the swing.

    Jules – early happy birthday to your oldest girl! That song Tomorrow on the Runway is so spare and lush all at once, beautifully haunting. And thanks for sharing the John McWhorter interview. His description of a word, “smells like marijuana and lavender” was amazing. Will have to check out that podcast/

    Jone – hooray for daffodils and clear skies and winning book sets.

    LW – good stories, and good songs are wonderful. Yum, bread. Love Kick 7 in combination with kicks 4-6.

    My kicks this week:
    1) Rainy windy weather followed by a glass of wine with a friend – indoors where it was warm.
    2) Catching up with another friend – HH dinners are always very fun.
    3) Sunshine! Glorious beautiful sun after lots of rain.
    4) The surprise of seeing spring shoots pushing upwards. Even though I planted them last year, it always amazes me when they start pushing up through the soil in the spring.
    5) Good result for a client.
    6) A quiet night in with Daisy.
    7) Working in the garden.
    7.5) Making plans.

    Have a great week Imps!

  4. Jone, ooh, I didn’t know you were working on a local haiku anthology. That’s wonderful. So is that daffodil. … I hope you can see Neko live one day. She’s bad-ass.

    Aw, shucks. Thanks, Little Willow. …. BREAD! My husband and daughters make fresh bread every week and are making some now. … I like that last kick, too.

    Rachel: So glad you listened! Here are the lyrics. A perfect little poem. I want to say that I read that Karen Peris wrote that for her child (now grown), but I could have made that up in my head. … I love your kicks. We have had sooo much rain this year. It’s raining now, but it’s a good night for hearing it hit the roof. Love that fourth kick. Love that you love your work (always) and get so much joy in good results for your clients.

    Have a good week you all!

  5. Rachel: Yay for good things, spring things, and good plans.

    Jules: You are welcome! Ooh, fresh homemade bread on a weekly basis?! Reason #618726 why I wish we were neighbors. Also, sometimes your c a p t c h a shows me words, and sometimes it shows me a warning that the system is going to expire on March 31st.

  6. Thanks for the heads-up, Little Willow. I get that sometimes too. I’ll ask my personal tech support (my husband).

    Neighbors. I’ll take that!

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