A farmer and her son carefully plant seeds in their garden. In the wild garden, many seeds are planted too, but not by farmers' hands. Different kinds of animals transport all sorts of seeds, often without knowing it. Sometimes rain washes seeds away to a new and unexpected location. And sometimes something extraordinary occurs, as when the pods of Scotch broom burst open explosively in the summer heat, scattering seeds everywhere like popcorn.
Kathryn Galbraith's lyrical prose seamlessly combines with Wendy Halperin's elegant, crisp illustrations to show that many elements-some unexpected-work together through the seasons to create and sustain the wild meadow garden.
My thoughts: I love picture books for children. They are wonderful teaching tools and the opportunity they afford the child and parent to interact is tremendously rewarding to both the child and the adult. When you hold this lovely, large picture book you are immediately captivated by the illustrations reminiscent of an earlier gentler time when the illustrations of children's books were lovely, soft, gentle, and fine tuned. The beautiful watercolor and pen illustrations by Wendy Anderson Halperin are all these. Richly illustrating plants and seeds along side of the lovely critters in the wild.
A picture book is about words as well as pictures. The finely crafted text and story line that Kathryn O. Galbraith uses to tell in a simple yet powerful way the wonderful seeding of the world around us in nature by nature. Seeds exploding. Wind blowing seeds. Animals transferring seeds. It is all there. A well-crafted science lesson for the young child just beginning to grasp knowledge of the world around him.
A good combination - author Kathryn O. Galbraith and illustrator Wendy Anderson Halperin. It is not a surprise that the book they developed won a Growing Good Kids Book Award and a 2010 Parents' Choice Approved Award. I recommend this book for libraries wherever children hunt for delectable books to read.
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DISCLOSURE: A complimentary copy of Planting the Wild Garden was provided to me by Peachtree Publishers in exchange for my honest review. No compensation was provided for this review. Opinions expressed are solely my own.
Author info: Kathryn O. Galbraith is an award-winning children's book author with more than a dozen picture books to her credit, including Boo, Bunny!; Arbor Day Square; Traveling Babies; and Laura Charlotte. She teaches writing for children at the University of Washington.
Illustrator info: Wendy Anderson Halperin is the illustrator of over twenty-five books, including Thank You, God, For Everything and Turn! Turn! Turn! She also created the award-winning project "Drawing Children into Reading." She lives in Michigan.