I am a Welcomer and I can now with all certainty attest to the fact that, "Trees can't tell Jokes, but they can certainly tell stories" (Wishtree by Katherine Applegate). Boy do I LOVE Red and its unlikely tenants that surprisingly dwell harmoniously in its hallows; seldom cantankerously. We've much to learn from this bunch. Red is every bit an optimist and filled with hope as evidenced by the sentiment that, "Hollows are proof that something bad can become something good with enough time and care and hope." Red is also very wise (with its 216 rings) and caring, and views the world through an empathetic lens. Red is there for the community in ways that they may never know. Red stands steadfast as a refuge in silent strength, garnished with the wishes of its immigrant neighborhood. When a new Muslim family faces adversity, Red, with the help of a crow named Bongo, concocts a plan sure to usher peace. In the end, we all have a voice. I will choose to use my voice to spread kindness. I am a Welcomer.Everyone needs to read this book. In fact, I am adding this book to my K-5 library for my students to enjoy. It is also the perfect read-aloud for the intermediate (3rd-5th grade) level. Katherine Applegate has very quickly become one of my favorite authors!