cover image Weeds Find a Way

Weeds Find a Way

Cindy Jenson-Elliott, illus. by Carolyn Fisher. S&S/Beach Lane, $16.99 (40p) ISBN 978-1-4424-1260-6

“Good or bad, weeds offer endless opportunities to study one of nature’s most wonderful tools: adaptation,” writes Jenson-Elliott in an afterword to this flowery (no pun intended) tribute to the tenacity and versatility of plants that are often overlooked and unwanted. Using mixed-media paintings and digitally collaged elements, Fisher (Good Night, World) presents up-close images of feathery seeds bursting from pods, “like confetti from a popped balloon,” and squeezing their way out of cracks in the cement. A girl and her dog make their way through several scenes, adding a touch of fauna amid the flora. In one scene, the girl blows dandelion puffs into the wind; in another, a handful of “prickly burrs” cling to her socks, both evidence of how weeds can propagate. In addition to her afterword, Jenson-Elliott concludes with three pages of details about two dozen types of weeds, from wild carrot (aka Queen Anne’s lace) to toxic locoweed. The many intriguing details will leave readers with the understanding that these plants are fighters. Ages 4–8. Author’s agent: Stefanie von Borstel, Full Circle Literary. (Feb.)