The Giving Back Tree


The Giving Back Tree

by Tarky Lee

GENRE: Children's (and all ages)

The Giving Back Tree is an original take on the classic tale of a tree who gave everything. Love is a healing force in this tender and magical story that reminds us the end is also a new beginning. We CAN grow back.


About The Author:

Tarky Lee is an Oakland, California based queer artist, writer, activist, and professional child care provider. She believes the stories we tell ourselves and others have the power to reshape our lives and heal our hearts. This is her first illustrated publication. She looks forward to sharing many more of her books, ideas, and art with the world. 

Tarky is a name given to the author by a powerful spirit she nannied named Alaska. Lee is the author's middle name. The pen name Tarky Lee is a dedication to the child that lives in us all. 

To follow this and other works @TarkyLee or email


Amazon Author Page: 

Q&A With the Author: 

What did you enjoy most about writing this book? 

I enjoyed feeling the way my own heart healed right alongside the tree and the girl who chose to love her. My favorite line made me cry many times, “from the middle of her heart, she pushed right through her broken parts.” It’s powerful to watch the way your final draft looks nothing like your first. This book was a labor of deep love, where my editor and I peeled away word after word until only the simplest most true message was left: Love helps us grow.  

Do you have any other books you are working on that you can tell us about? 

I am working on another book based on an evening nannying a kiddo. It had to do with a hilarious and creative solution I used to help her laugh in the face of bad dreams before going to bed. Fears hate being laughed at. The experience of that night is one she remembers well. 

Can you tell us about what you have planned for the future? 

I have so many plans as an artist and writer to continue making the creative expressions I want to see in the world. Other topics I would like to tackle are body dysmorphia, grief, how to teach kids about the fluidity of time, and learning to love in its many forms. As an artist, I enjoy using illustration and photography to communicate as much as the words. I look forward to publishing various collections of photography, art and memoir. 

How long have you been writing? 

Well when you were raised by a Montessori teacher and self published author, I suppose you learn to appreciate writing from a young age. I have poetry going back to when I was pretty little. I don’t think I found my voice as a writer until the age of 30 though, and in many ways I am glad for that. So excited to have my first published work out in the world. 

Anything more you would like to say to your readers and fans?

Thank you so much for giving your time to reading these few words. I hope you enjoy the story of The Giving Back Tree. From my heart to yours. 


To purchase on Amazon:

To purchase on Barnes & Noble: 


Tarky Lee will be awarding a $15 Amazon/BN GC to a randomly drawn winner via rafflecopter during the tour.

a Rafflecopter giveaway


  1. This truly sounds lovely.

  2. Sounds good, thank you for sharing.

  3. We CAN grow back is a wonderful tag line for this childrens book

    1. Thank you for the note! I believe we can, I see it every day. :)

  4. This sounds like a cute book that my niece would enjoy reading.

  5. I think this would be so good as the other one is just wonderful and my students and grandkids would love to read and I will review! peggy clayton

    1. I hope they enjoy it Peggy. We need new stories for new generations :)

  6. The book sounds wonderful. Thanks!

  7. Sounds like a great take on the classic story.

    1. :) new generations should grow up with new stories.

  8. This sounds like a good book and I really like the cover.

  9. I like the hand drawn touch to it, cool!

  10. I can't wait to read through this book with my nephew! Thanks so much for sharing.

  11. Sounds so cute! Thank you for the Q&A! :)

  12. This sounds like a great follow up to the original.


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