This charming farm-to-table picture book hits all the right spots for the younger set.
Words and pictures share center stage. The book follows the farm cycle step by step, from seed-sowing and nurturing in the spring, through harvest and market in summer, and finally to a meal shared with friends and family. Graced with abundant water and sunlight, “seed” becomes “sprout,” then “shoot,” then “stalk.” When harvest time comes around, the bounty is “snipped” and is bound for the farmers market. At the market, farmers “sell,” and shoppers “sample” before choosing what to buy. At home in the kitchen, vegetables are prepped, cooked, and seasoned. Soon, everyone sits down to a lovely picnic dinner of corn, succotash, salad, and more! Using only words starting with the letter “S” for both the clipped primary text and sound effects and labels that grace the illustrations (“Sprinkle spice. / Stir salad”; “Shake Shake”). Pfeffer has ensured his story is a playful read as well as the perfect introduction to where our food comes from. Furthermore, the spare prose pairs well with Austin’s bold, graphic illustrations. Austin doesn’t just skillfully incorporate Pfeffer’s text directly into his art; each scene is rendered in delightful detail and features numerous layers of storytelling waiting to be revealed.
Vivid colors, a multiracial cast, and seamless alliteration make this book a wonderful read—not once, not twice, but again and again. (Picture book. 3-6)