On the tropical island of Puerto Rico, there was an ancient banyan tree. His enormous twisted trunk rose up beside the San Juan Gate. Long roots hung from his wide-spreading branches and his emerald, leafy crown greeted all who passed by. This beloved tree stood on the shore of the island for over a hundred years--until the fateful time when the biggest hurricane in Puerto Rico's history slammed into the island, devastating communities and uprooting that very tree.
This lushly illustrated and evocatively written picture book tells the story of the majestic jagüey blanco, one of the most beloved trees in the city of Old San Juan. Puerto Rican author Anna Orenstein-Cardona weaves an epic tale based on the true story of this bearded watchdog of the island, how the tree was impacted by Hurricane Maria, and how a group of people rallied together to save it. With gorgeous illustrations by Juan Manuel Moreno, this picture book serves as an account of the devastating impact of Hurricane Maria and the strength of the people who continue to rebuild to this day.