cover image Grandma’s Gardens

Grandma’s Gardens

Hillary and Chelsea Clinton, illus. by Carme Lemniscates. Philomel, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-593-11535-0

The mother-daughter team shapes a deeply affectionate tribute to the bounty of nature and the love of gardening they both shared with the late Dorothy Rodham, Hillary’s mother and Chelsea’s grandmother, here mentioned by her first name. On each spread, the authors share a singular memory of gardening with Grandma Dorothy at various points in their lives: “I remember being so proud that Grandma asked me to help her care for the azaleas,” recalls a young Chelsea; Hillary, reminiscing about her mother gardening into her 90s, notes, “Watching my mom enjoying our garden and tending to it gave me as much joy as it gave her.” Less effectual than these personal recollections are accompanying platitudes ranging from obvious (“Gardens give us food”) to extraneous (“Gardens are places to share stories”). Lemniscates (Birds) gracefully marks the passage of time in tranquil mixed-media pictures showcasing the changing seasons and the richly hued flora, vegetables, and fruit they bring, the maturing appearance of each character, and, ultimately, the addition of Chelsea’s children to the cheerful gardening brigade. Ages 4–8. [em](Mar.) [/em]