Friday 8 February 2019

Grace’s Mystery Seed

Grace’s Mystery Seed by Juliet M Sampson and Karen Erasmus (Ford Street Publishing) PB RRP $24.95 ISBN: 9781925804201

Reviewed by Karen Hendriks

A picture book for ages 3+ years, this gardening tale takes us to a place where the simple things can bring the most joy.

Grace’s neighbour, Mrs Marino, has the best backyard in the street. It’s a treasure trove of delights including a veggie patch, fruit trees, chooks, fish pond and birds that visit. Grace is a good helper and loves feeding the birds. She wonders about the seeds that the birds eat.
So together Grace and Mrs Marino plant a seed. Grace learns to care and wait for her plant to grow. She shares her news about her seed and everyone is waiting to see what the seed is. Once the sunflower appears, its specialness shines as it follows the sun. Then, there is one final gift from Grace’s flower: there are enough seeds for everyone next year.

The joy of Australian backyards is delightfully shown with the realistic use of green in its many hues with blue skies in watercolours. The layout is varied and the perspective cleverly shows us the backyards from a variety of angles. I particularly love the bird’s eye views of the backyards.

The language and dialogue delight and this story would be a perfect tool in a classroom. This is a charming book that will appeal to both child and adult readers.

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