Weeds Find a Way by Cindy Jenson-Elliott, illustrated by Carolyn Fisher
Weeds are the most tenacious of plants, growing where nothing else can survive. This informational picture book looks at how these weeds are able to live in such harsh conditions. It also explores the various ways that weeds reproduce from fluffy seeds carried on the wind to being pokey and sticky and carried along on clothes and fur. Weeds can survive scorching heat and icy cold. They fight back by having stems that break before their roots are pulled out, sour sap or thorns. But in the end, this book is about survival and the beauty and wonder of weeds. It’s a celebration of these unwanted plants.
The author has written this book in prose, but uses poetic devices like analogies and similes to show how weeds thrive. Her language choices are very nice such as her depiction of milkweed: “…shot out of tight, dry pods like confetti from a popped balloon.” Throughout the book there are descriptions like this and they bring the entire book a certain shine.
Fisher’s art is standout in this book. Her illustrations are a dynamic mix of painting styles. There are layers throughout her work, some smooth and detailed, others large and textured for the backgrounds, and almost lacy weedy touches. They are strikingly lovely especially if you look at them closely, rather like the weeds they depict.
A choice addition to gardening story times, this will make a good summer or spring pick to share. Appropriate for ages 3-5.
Reviewed from copy received from Beach Lane Books.
3 thoughts on “Review: Weeds Find a Way by Cindy Jenson-Elliott”
I remember taking a class with Allyn Johnston of Beach Lane Books at UCLA extension years ago and she happened to mention she had a pile of manuscripts from a conference and that one of them had caught her attention—it was about weeds! Can’t help but think it was this very book. Lovely.
Another promising title and so nicely evaluated!
Reblogged this on Nature Explorer and commented:
Want to wake up your brain cells? Check out this very cool book review blog — which just happened to review Weeds Find a Way!
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