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Mortimer's First Garden    by Karma Wilson & Dan Andreasen order for
Mortimer's First Garden
by Karma Wilson
Order:  USA  Can
Margaret K. McElderry, 2009 (2009)
* * *   Reviewed by Deb Kincaid

In Mortimer's First Garden, little Mortimer mouse is eager for spring. 'Brown, brown, brown,' he squeaked. 'Nothing but brown.' When Mortimer hears the big people of the house talking about a springtime miracle, he decides to plant his last sunflower seed to see if what he heard is true. What he learns along the way is the need for patience, hard work, and trust that God will make the seed grow. He finds contentment, and a new friend to share his bountiful harvest with, when his gardening efforts are rewarded.

Wilson writes with musicality and gives us a very active and likeable hero. Children will love reading and listening to this book. The author's references to God seem natural to the narrative, not simply an employment of device. Using the term God rather than a more specific name or title may also make this book more palatable to a broader audience. The illustrations (originals in oil, on bristol board) by Dan Andreasen are irresistibly charming, precise, and expressive, perfectly complementing Wilson's tone and style. Mortimer's First Garden is a lovely book, with a spiritual bent.

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