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A FLOWER IS A FRIEND by Frieda Wishinsky Kirkus Star


by Frieda Wishinsky ; illustrated by Karen Patkau

Pub Date: May 2nd, 2023
ISBN: 9781772782806
Publisher: Pajama Press

Nature creates marvelous and beneficial partnerships.

Besides being beautiful, elegant, and fragrant, flowers are helpful, supportive, and protective friends of fellow garden dwellers. Beginning with this quietly lovely book’s first spread, blossoms proudly announce themselves in clear, simple prose and describe how they help their friends (“Kiss a butterfly,” “Shade a frog”). Altogether, 12 symbiotic relationships are covered—between crocuses, zinnias, magnolias, roses, and tulips and creatures including butterflies, bumblebees, beetles, snails, ladybugs, mice, bats, and hummingbirds—most of them active pollinators. A thought-provoking question (“Why would a morning glory be happy to see a dragonfly?”) about a specific flower-creature relationship at the bottom of each page stimulates visual literacy and creative and critical thinking. The remarkable digital illustrations, so photographically, lusciously lifelike that one can almost smell floral aromas wafting from the pages, call for readers’ close scrutiny and attention to detail and suggest answers to the questions. If they don’t bring responses to readers’ minds quickly, the fact-packed backmatter about the flower-creature bonds will do the trick. The final illustrated page depicts the garden creatures shown previously in the book. For the text to be appreciated in its entirety without interruption, the flowers’ “proclamations” should probably be read or listened to first; readers may then return to the beginning of the book and proceed with each question in turn. (This book was reviewed digitally.)

A garden of gorgeous delights.

(index of flowers) (Informational picture book. 4-7)