The Pain Tree and Other Teenage Angst-Ridden Poetry
Collected and Illustrated by Esther Watson and Mark Todd
ISBN-13: 978-0618047581
Houghton Mifflin Company, Boston, 2000
64 p.

GENRE: Poetry

TEASER QUOTE:
I sob within,
Knowing you’ll not come
And I’m alone.
Possibly forever p. 33

SUMMARY: The Pain Tree is a book of original poetry written for and by teenagers. The poems are on a variety of subject about growing up, loneliness, heartache, and acceptance. There are twenty-five poems and Mark and Ester have Illustrated the pages beautifully to capture the emotion of the poem.

CRITIQUE: the art is funky and cool. The poems are melodramatic and angst ridden. It’s not high quality poetry but it is real poems from real teens. Anyone who had an emo poetry phase will understand why these poems are so well-loved. They were inspired by real emotions, no matter how over dramatized they might be.

ABOUT THE AUTHORS: Esther Watson was born in Dallas/Fort Worth, TX. After graduating from high school, she packed her things and moved to California. Mark Todd was born and raised in Las Vegas. They met in college in California and later moved to New York. Mark and Esther’s illustrations have appeared on CD covers and magazines.

AUTHOR’S WEBSITE: N/A

READING LEVEL 15+

CHALLENGE ISSUES: N/A

DEFENSE: N/A

CURRICULUM TIES: Poetry

BOOKTALKING IDEAS: Discuss the emotional healing that can be had from writing poetry.

WHY INCLUDED: I wanted to include a book of poetry in this collection. I am guilty of writing emo poems when I was a teen. THis brought back memories.

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