For those of you feeling hemmed in by the concrete jungle, and in need of a little more greenery in your life, this picture book is for you!
Mae and her family have moved to a new house. Instead of having the garden she used to love, Mae is now in an apartment and surrounded by grey concrete and rooftops. She desperately misses the flowers and plants, the butterflies and the birds. Mae tries to find a park, but it is lifeless and dull.
Then one day, she follows a bird and ends up outside Florette, a nursery. It is closed, but she notices a tiny stalk of green peeking out underneath the wall. Mae takes the tiny ‘piece of forest’ with her and goes home to begin building her new garden.
With some new friends and a team effort, her concrete jungle gets a whole lot greener!
Why I love it:
Here at The Sunshine Collective, one of us has a degree in horticulture and the other once killed a cactus, so Florette has a bit of a different appeal for us. Erin imagines all the things she would plant in her beautiful garden and Lisa wonders how on earth the children in the book are going to keep everything alive!
Themes/ideas to discuss with your child:
- Adapting to change
- Dealing with disappointment
- New beginnings
- Making the best of something
Questions to ask your child:
- What do you think this book might be about?
- Do you think this is a fiction book (a story) or a non-fiction book (facts)?
- Is this a book you want to read? Why/why not?
- What do you think the little girl is doing on the cover?
- Who is with her?
- What would be a good name for the girl and her dog?
- Why do you think the book might be called Florette?
- There are lots of plants and flowers on the cover, which is your favourite?
- Did you enjoy this book? Why/why not?
- What kind of place do you think Mae used to live in? What makes you think this?
- How do you think Mae felt about moving house?
- What were some of the things Mae did to try to recreate her garden?
- What eventually led her to Florette?
- What kind of place was Florette?
- Mae found a way to make a whole new garden; what did she also make along the way?
- How do you think you would feel in a world without plants and flowers? Why do you think you would feel this way?
- If Mae was a real person, what kind of job do you think she might have when she grew up?
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