Who doesn’t love colorful blooms in the springtime? Why, blooms in spring are as American as…well, apple pie. Thus, what better way to welcome spring than to introduce the latest installment in author/illustrator Yuval Zommer’s over-sized series of picture books, The Big Book of Blooms. FYI, other books in his amazing series include The Big Book of the Blue, The Big Book of Bugs, and The Big Book of Beasts. But for now…let’s discuss The Big Book of Blooms!
First off, did you know that flowers have families just like you and me? They don’t have brothers or sisters or third cousins twice removed, but they are definitely members of families. There is the Daisy family (sunflowers, dandelions, marigolds, and yes, daisies); the Bulb family (tulips and lilies); the Fruity family (raspberries and apples and cherries…oh, my!); and the Prickly, Peapod and Orchard families, too. Author Zommer teaches avid botanists intricate details of a flower’s anatomy, and introduces the various pollinators (bees, insects, birds and bats, to name a few) that are crucial to flowers. He explains why certain flowers are the color that they are, and how their colors attract pollinators.
There is an interesting section on the power of the almighty flower, including how chemicals in certain flowers are used in medicine to fight cancer, and how some flowers are used to brew tea or to soothe aching muscles. There’s a sci-fi-like section that describes the carnivorous Venus flytrap which eats flies, beetles, slugs…and even frogs! And yet another section that describes how some flowers have been on the Earth for over 90 million years.
Like the other fact-filled books in this series, The Big Book of Blooms is an amazing book of knowledge that readers won’t want to put down. It discusses everything from vines to roses to creepers. It also has a section on what readers can do to save flowers and even to grow their own. There is a detailed index, and there is a bonus section with “flower words” like “habitat” and “biodiversity.”
For a full and satisfying read on the flowers that you love — and even the ones you hate, like “stinking flowers,” don’t miss this amazing book. Use it in a middle grade classroom, on camping trips, during nature walks, or as part of your child’s personal library.