Wednesday, June 6, 2018

Green Green by Marie Lamba and Baldev Lamba -- OPTIONAL

Lamba, Marie and Baldev. Green Green: A Community Gardening Story, illustrated by Sonia Sánchez. PICTURE BOOK. Farrar Straus Giroux (Macmillan), 2017. $18. 9780374327972

Using rhythmic text and repeating refrains, this book celebrates the joys of creating a community garden. An afterword tells more about how to create one in your own neighborhood, gives information on protecting bees and butterflies, and provides directions for a craft.

I really, really wanted to like this one. It's a great topic, the illustrations are eye-catching, and the diverse characters represent many real-life communities. Unfortunately, the plot and characters are extremely hard to follow. In the beginning there are some characters planting gardens in a rural area and then, suddenly, characters (new ones? the same but dressed differently and in different combinations?) living in an urban area and feeling sad because there is no space for a garden. I've tried to search for a credible plot line, but each one seems to be contradicted by the illustrations. My students are observant, and I KNOW that if I read this to them, some would have the same questions I have, and while I don't feel like I have to know all the answers, of course, I would like to know that there IS an answer that could possibly be figured out, and I just don't feel that here. I will have to save my class read-aloud time and my library space for other books instead.

Pre-K, EL (K-3) -- OPTIONAL. Sydney G., K-6 Library Media Specialist

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