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Quiet in the Garden Hardcover – Illustrated, February 3, 2009

4.3 out of 5 stars 15 ratings

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 1—An artful introduction to nature, stillness, and the power of observation. A wide-eyed boy enters a garden replete with fluttering butterflies, birds, and blooming trees, all rich with color. "I sit quietly. If I am very still, I see more." He also hears sounds: "chirp, squeak, crunch." A robin eats red berries from a bush, a turtle munches moss, a lizard snaps up a moth, and so on. Animals small and large question motives as each one finds its meal: "The frog hopped up and caught a gnat. Why did you do that? asked a fish. I was hungry, said the frog, and I didn't want to eat you." Learning by observing and listening to the creatures in turn, the boy finally gathers a meal of apples, berries, carrots, and more for a picnic with his friends-the myriad creatures. With spare words and a balance of line and color against white backgrounds framed with lacey branches, Aliki deftly portrays the benefits of observing nature. Back matter tells how to grow a "quiet" garden. This book is perfect for reading aloud: "The squirrel crunched on an acorn. Why did you do that? asked the spider. Ah-wa-wan-gwy, said the squirrel, crunching away."—Marian Creamer, Children's Literature Alive, Portland, OR
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

“I love to go out in the garden,” says a young boy, who describes what he sees and hears when he sits still in his lush backyard. The quiet garden, it turns out, is teeming with life, and the boy imagines noisy conversations among the small animals he observes. After a robin nibbles berries on a bush, for example, a snail asks, “Why did you do that?” “I was hungry,” the robin replies. That question and answer becomes a rhythmic refrain, subtly introducing food-chain concepts in dialogue between pairs of animals. Finally, the boy realizes that he, too, is hungry, and after gathering vegetables and fruit, he shares a picnic with his animal friends. Young children will delight in the detailed pictures, rendered in watercolor, crayon, and ink, which contrast expansive aerial views of the garden with close-up scenes of the boy, surrounded by flowering plants and small companions. The words’ lulling repetition creates a subtle, meditative tone that reinforces the message: quiet observation can reveal an exciting, “anything-but-quiet” world. Preschool-Kindergarten. --Gillian Engberg

Product details

  • Publisher ‏ : ‎ Greenwillow Books; Illustrated edition (February 3, 2009)
  • Language ‏ : ‎ English
  • Hardcover ‏ : ‎ 24 pages
  • ISBN-10 ‏ : ‎ 0061552070
  • ISBN-13 ‏ : ‎ 978-0061552076
  • Reading age ‏ : ‎ 4 - 8 years
  • Grade level ‏ : ‎ Preschool - 2
  • Item Weight ‏ : ‎ 13.3 ounces
  • Dimensions ‏ : ‎ 11.26 x 9.18 x 0.34 inches
  • Customer Reviews:
    4.3 out of 5 stars 15 ratings

About the author

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Aliki is the author and illustrator of more than fifty books for children that are treasured by readers all over the world. Her many well-loved titles include My Visit to the Zoo, My Visit to the Aquarium, My Visit to the Dinosaurs, Wild and Woolly Mammoths, Tabby, and Those Summers. Aliki lives near the Globe theater, in London, England.

In Her Own Words..."Aliki grew up in Philadelphia in a big Greek family where everyone was busy creating and sharing their activities. She knew from the time she was in kindergarten that she wanted to bean artist, although music was also a natural talent. She was encouraged throughout her early life by her parents and by teachers she will never forget."She graduated from the Philadelphia Collegeof Art and started a career in advertising art. After she married Franz Brandenberg, Aliki continued her career in his country, Switzerland, where they lived for three years. It was there that she wrote and illustrated her first book, The Story of William Tell, which was published in England. When they moved to New York, Aliki wrote and illustrated My Five Senses--the book that changed the direction of her career and her life.

Although she had never thought of being a writer, Aliki has been making books ever since. Children's books, she says, are a combination of two things I love: words and pictures. I also love the privacy of books--both reading them and making them. Aliki writes fiction, in which she can express her feelings, and nonfiction research books about subjects she's interested in and wants to know more about. Each book is a new challenge; each is different, she says. The subject directs the way I illustrate a book, the same way friends bring out different parts of us. The challenge is to get the words right and then to make pictures that expand and enhance their meaning.""Besides her own books, Aliki has illustrated many written by Franz Brandenberg and other authors. Her two children are also in the arts. Jason is a filmmaker and Alexa is a children's book author-illustrator. They appear in almost all of her books as cats, mice, or themselves.

Aliki loves music, theater, cinema, museums, children, her cat, Nefertiti, and working in her garden in London, where she lives. She travels frequently to the U.S., Greece, Switzerland, and other parts of the world, though most of the time she is alone in her studio with the books she is working on--and Mozart."

Customer reviews

4.3 out of 5 stars
4.3 out of 5
15 global ratings

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