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Thirteen-year-old Marnus is tired of being overshadowed. His older brother is a star athlete who gives girls kissing lessons, and his younger brother is a crafty entrepreneur who has tricked Marnus into doing the dishes all summer.
It’s while Marnus is bemoaning his predicament to himself that a girl named Leila shows up at their front door with a petition to save a tree. Soon Marnus finds himself at the centre of a protest as he and Leila camp out in the tree to prevent it from being cut down by developers laying a pipeline. Their protest inspires the town and its residents who come to visit them, and Marnus finally has the chance to be noticed.
The book by Jaco Jacobs deftly handles issues around family life, as well as activism, with a light-hearted touch. With lots of humour and a cast of weird but wonderful characters, and Jim Tierney’s modish illustrations, this is the perfect feel-good book from one of South Africa’s top children’s authors.
A Good Day for Climbing Trees was selected as an Honour Title in 2017 for BookTrust’s In Other Words project.