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AND THE GOOD BROWN EARTH by Kathy Henderson

AND THE GOOD BROWN EARTH

By Kathy Henderson (Author) , Kathy Henderson (Illustrator)

Age Range: 6 - 8

Pub Date: April 1st, 2004
ISBN: 0-7636-2301-6
Publisher: Candlewick

As a year turns, Gran and little Joe tend adjacent garden patches—Gran digging, planting careful rows, and methodically tending to business, Joe exuberantly broadcasting his seeds, fooling around with the hose, pulling whatever catches his eye. The passage of time, marked not by months or conventional seasons, but by Gram-designated stretches of thinking, planting, weeding, watering, and resting while “the good brown earth” gets on “with doing what the good brown earth does best,” culminates at last in a richly satisfying gathering of berries, vegetables, and one gigantic pumpkin from Gran’s tidy garden and delighted Joe’s “higglety-pigglety, tangly, FANTASTIC” jungle. Henderson depicts the two gardeners amid pale, impressionistic, increasingly lush plantings, framed by tall grasses and a curvy apple tree; the effect is both intimate and visually lyrical. However Gram and Joe may differ in their methods, their shared pleasure in the bounteous results comes through clearly. (Picture book. 6-8)