Cover image for A handful of sunshine : growing a sunflower
A handful of sunshine : growing a sunflower
Eclare, Melanie.
Personal Author:
First American edition.
Publication Information:
Brooklyn, NY : Ragged Bears, 2000.
Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 30 cm
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
SB299.S9 E24 2000 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf
SB299.S9 E24 2000 Juvenile Non-Fiction Open Shelf

On Order



Splendid in-your-face photos and a straightforward text combine in an oversize format to illustrate the quiet miracle of a sunflower's growth from seed to magnificent blossom. Illustrating a classroom project, the story relays simple instructions on growing and caring for sunflowers.

Author Notes

Melanie Eclare is renowned in Britain for her garden writing and photography, which have appeared in every major home and garden magazine. She lives in Wiltshire, England.

Reviews 2

Booklist Review

Gr. 2^-4, younger for reading aloud. A visually inviting introduction to gardening, this book features large, colorful photographs of young Tilda planting her sunflower seeds, watering them, watching the plants grow, and harvesting the seeds for next year. Most of the double-page spreads display one or two photos, accompanied by a line or two of explanatory text. A few of the pictures look like posed snapshots, but most are clear, well-lit photos of a child at work in the garden. Like the sunflower that towers over Tilda in the end, the book itself is supersized, so it may be difficult to shelve in some libraries. Still, preschool and primary-grade teachers seeking material on sunflowers will find this a good book to share with their classes. --Carolyn Phelan

School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 2-In this British import, young Tilda buys sunflower seeds with her pocket money and plants them in March, which is early for many Americans. A brief text in large print and full-page photos take readers through the planting, growing, and harvesting process. The last page features eight steps of instructions, each accompanied by a small, descriptive photograph. The emphasis here is clearly on the elegant, full-color photographs: the endpapers are double-page Georgia O'Keeffe-like shots that focus on the center of a giant blossom. Within the book, two more double-spread photos-no borders or text-show Tilda in her brightly striped sweater and rubber boots diligently tending to her garden. The book is a pleasure to look at, but there are so many other titles in the current sunflower craze that libraries owning Miela Ford's Sunflower (Greenwillow, 1995) or Lola Schaefer's This Is the Sunflower (HarperCollins, 2000) may find this one to be an additional ornamental purchase.-Carolyn Jenks, First Parish Unitarian Church, Portland, ME (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.