During her mother’s absence, a young girl discovers the joys of gardening—and the rewards of persistence and a sharp eye—in a sweet intergenerational story.
A young girl must stay with her grandparents while her mother is in the hospital. At first, it’s hard at first to focus on anything but missing and worrying about her mom. But then Grandpa suggests that she help out in his garden. And what a garden it is! There are rows and rows of vegetables and all kinds of flowers, but the most beautiful of all are Grandpa’s sweet peas. Maybe, Grandpa suggests, she can take care of them over the summer and enter them into the flower show when the season ends. The problem is, nothing seems to go right with the sweet peas. No matter what she does, the flowers keep dying. Until finally, the mystery is solved—but will the sweet peas bloom in time for the show? If only her mother were there . . . With warm, child-friendly illustrations and a simple narration, author-illustrator Hazel Mitchell tells a timeless story about holding on to hope in hard times and finding the strength and determination to see it through. A brief author’s note at the end offers a bit of history and a few details about sweet peas for aspiring gardeners.
About the Author
Hazel Mitchell is the author-illustrator of Toby, which was awarded the Dog Writers Association of America’s MAXWELL Medal. She is also the illustrator of numerous books for children, including Borrowing Bunnies by Cynthia Lord, Imani’s Moon by JaNay Brown-Wood, Animally by Lynn Parrish Sutton, and Where Do Fairies Go When It Snows? by Liza Gardner Walsh. Originally from Yorkshire, England, she now lives in Maine.
When Mom’s illness necessitates a hospital stay, Dad drives his young child for a summerlong visit with grandparents. When the child, who narrates, struggles to concentrate on activities, Grandpa proposes helping with his garden—robust with veggies and flowers...Mitchell’s winsome pictures chronicle English townscapes, comfy, kitten-filled interiors, gentle hills, and a garden replete with small creatures to spy...engaging pictures enhance this successful, absorbing intergenerational tale.
A gently encouraging narrative that invites readers to seek solace through caretaking.