Rave Reviews by Jean E. Eustance

I love Green Beans! I mean, I love the picture book, Green Beans, by Elizabeth Thomas and illustrated by Vicki Jo Redenbaugh. It is in the picture book section of the Children’s Department of the Pine Bush Area Public Library.  With gardening season starting, it is the book to read.

Dorothea and her Daddy and Gramma lived together and Gramma was a great gardener. She was also very strict. She did not just talk to her flowers and vegetables, she told them what to do, with no nonsense about it!

Vicki Jo Redenbaugh’s illustrations are perfect. They show Gramma, thin and tall, and in command. She looks suspiciously like a master gardener whom I know in Pine Bush. Every time I see “Gramma” working in her garden, I see—woops, better not tell you.

“She loved her garden. She planted it with pink roses, gold zinnias, yellow snapdragons, purple pansies and green beans…There was no lollygagging, she told them. Most of the plants were obedient. The beans were another story.”

The green beans would not grow, no matter what Gramma did. This irked her because she liked to be in control. Finally it was time for her yearly vacation and she had to leave her garden in Dorothea’s hands. When she came back, she found the house a mess, and Dorothea and Daddy out in the garden, astonished!   The beans had grown! Without help!  Without Gramma!

Eventually they had green beans for supper. And Gramma relaxed a little. She listened to a different kind of music on Saturday night. She ate some grapes without cutting them with the grape snips. Even Gramma could change, and all because of Green Beans.

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