Growing an Artist: The Story of a Landscaper and His Son/Cultivando a un artista: la historia de un jardinero paisajista y su hijo

Published by Simon and Schuster/Paula Wiseman Books

Summary:  The narrator spends the day helping his father with his landscaping business.  It’s hard work, and one of his classmates snubs the boy when he sees him working in his yard.  But visiting the dump and choosing plants from the nursery is fun, and his dad’s enthusiasm about his business is contagious. Everywhere they go, the boy pulls out his sketchbook and draws what he sees.  Their last visit is to a couple who want to transform their overgrown yard.  When the boy gets home, he begins to create a design for the new yard.  His dad agrees to use his plans.  “You have a gift,” says his mother, as he looks at all the sketches he’s made of his day.  Includes an author’s note about his father’s landscape business and how he helped his dad as a child.  Available in English and Spanish. 40 pages; ages 4-8.

Pros:  This would make a great mentor text for memoir/narrative writing. Belpré honoree John Parra brings to life a story which is clearly close to his heart.

Cons:  I would have enjoyed seeing a side-by-side illustration of the boy’s blueprint and the finished yard he helped design.

July 10, 2022 at 06:40PM Janet Dawson