Reviewer Conny Withay:Operating her own business in office management since 1991, Conny is an avid reader, volunteers reading the Bible to the elderly, and makes handmade jewelry. A cum laude graduate with a degree in art living in the Pacific Northwest, she is married with two sons, two daughter-in-laws, and one granddaughter.
Author: V.A. Boeholt
Illustrator: Nathaniel P. Jensen
Publisher: Five Star Publications
“You all took on a big challenge when we decided to help our friend, Farmer Green, and you did it cheerfully. You worked hard to plant and tend this wonderful garden. You should be proud of yourselves,” Burton commends his friends in V.A. Boeholt’s children’s story, Burton’s Friendship Garden.
Second book of the Burton the Scarecrow, Friendship Tales from the Farm series, this letter-sized paperback book has thirty-six pages and is targeted toward readers ages five to ten years old. With no profanity, scary scenes, or violence, it concentrates on friendship and helping those in need. Illustrator Nathaniel P. Jensen’s full-page color, painted artworks are expressive and engaging.
As scarecrows Burton and Ribbon watch Farmer Green prepare his fields for the next year’s crop, the tractor uses a plow and discer on the ground. Farmer Green tells them he will be back tomorrow to do the planting.
When the farmer never shows up, Burton is told by his friend, Crow, that the man had an accident and has his casts on his legs. With Farmer Green unable to plant his garden, Burton and his animal friends decide to work together and plant the seeds. As a team, they weed, thin out crowded seedlings, fertilize, and water the plants every day.
By the time harvest comes, Farmer Green is healed and sees the beautiful, healthy vegetables produced. He thanks Burton and his animal friends for being so caring and thoughtful in designing and maintaining a beautiful friendship garden.
Besides teaching about being selfless, how to care for others, and working as a team to accomplish a goal, young readers will learn about farming, the growth stages and different parts of plants, and taking the produce to market at harvest time.
At the end of the book, there is a resource guide explaining the story’s concepts, along with the history of gardening, reading / listening tips, activity ideas, learning points, online information, and a helpful glossary. Also included are biographies of author, illustrator, and publisher with an order form.
This is another wonderful book in the series for children to read, learn, and remember how to think about others in need, work as a team, and be proud of one’s accomplishments. Boeholt understands how to get the message of friendship across while educating young readers about growing vegetables.
This book was furnished by Five Star Publications in lieu of an unbiased review.