Author(s): Shaun Tan
A small child awakes to find blackened leaves falling from her bedroom ceiling, threatening to quietly overwhelm her. 'Sometimes you wake up with nothing to look forward to...' As she wanders around a world that is complex, puzzling and alienating, she is overtaken by a myriad of feelings. Just as it seems all hope is lost, the girl returns to her bedroom to find that a tiny red seedling has grown to fill the room with warm light.
Shaun Tan's latest creation, The Red Tree, is a book about feelings - feelings that can not always be simply expressed in words. It is a series of imaginary landscapes conjured up by the wizardry of Shaun Tan's masterful and miraculous art. As a kind of fable, The Red Tree seeks to remind us that, though some bad feelings are inevitable, they are always tempered by hope.
Winner of NSW Premier's Literary Award Patricia Wrightson Prize 2002. Shortlisted for Western Australian Premier's Book Awards: Children's Books 2001 and APA Design Awards: Scholastic Best Designed Children's Book 2002.
Shaun Tan has an outstanding reputation for his illustrative work. He won the Spectrum Gold Award for Book Illustration 2000 and also the Crichton Award (The Viewer) in 1995. The Rabbits, written by John Marsden, was named CBCA Book of the Year and received the Aurealis Governor's Award in 1999; and Memorial, written by Gary Crew, was a CBCA Honour Book and also won an APA Design Award in 2000. He wrote and illustrated The Lost Thing, published in 2000. He has been a leading science-fiction illustrator in Australia for several years; with recognition including the illustrators of the Future Award 1991 and the Australian National Science Fiction Best Artist Award 1995, 1996. The Red Tree is his fifth picture book.