Once Upon a Garden Series
Jo Rooks, Author and Illustrator
Magaination Press, Fiction
Suitable for ages: 4-8
Aug. 20, 2019
Book Synopsis: Sophie was always ponders big questions, like
Why is the sky blue?
Why are raindrops wet?
and What are stars made of?
But when Sophie starts school, there’s a wobbly feeling in her tummy and she can’t help popping back into her shell. She is left with one big question Why am I so shy?
When Sophie meets Stanley, she realizes that she’s not the only one who feels shy. Can she gain the confidence to help a new friend?
A heart warming tale about a sensitive snail who overcomes her shyness with a little help from her new friends.
Aug. 20, 2019
Book Synopsis: Lucy is a lightning bug and the most talented flyer in the squad. There’s just one problem: she doesn’t light up! When it’s time to learn night flying, Lucy is anxious. She tries everything to get her light to shine but nothing works. Lucy is about to give up when her friends are captured by a nasty toad and his gang, who hatched a plan to brighten up their bog. Does Lucy have what it takes to save her friends? Or is she just an “ordinary” bug after all? A sweet story which shines a light on inner confidence, self-acceptance, and courage. Lucy learns that doing a good deed will always make you shine bright!
Mar. 21 2020
Book Synopsis: Doug has trouble lifting heavy balls of dung. He just doesn’t feel as strong as the other dung beetles. When Doug feels down that he isn’t tough enough, a passing butterfly helps him see things in a different light and he realizes that strength comes in many forms.
An uplifting story of a determined dung beetle who finds his unique strength in creating beautiful things inspired by nature, flowers, friends, and the garden.
Mar. 21, 2020
Book Synopsis: Layla is a ladybug with a lucky charm for ever occasion: lucky socks for running races, a lucky pencil for test, and a lucky watering can for her flowers. When Layla enters a baking event, she is counting on her good luck to help her bake a delicious cake. But is luck the only ingredient that matters?
A clever tale of a ladybug who learns that success comes form her own smarts, skill and hard work — not lucky charms and chance.
Why I like this series:
Explore the the world of self-discovery with four adorable creatures from the natural world — Layla, Doug, Lucy and Sophie — in the Once Upon a Garden series by author-illustrator, Jo Rooks. The four curious characters are fun-loving and appear in all of the stories. The series is perfect for young children who are working with issues of shyness, self-acceptance, and courage, and discovering new talents, skills and hard work. There is simplicity in the text and the illustrations are happy and bright, and compliment the emotions and themes in each book. This series is sure to boost the self-confidence of children.
Resources: Visit your backyard and identify the insects visiting your flower beds, gardens and trees. Draw a picture of your favorite insect or make up story about what the insect is doing. The books alone are excellent resources for parents and teachers.
Jo Rooks is an award-winning author-illustrator who studied graphic design and illustration at Bath School of Art and Design. She has illustrated several books including A Box of Butterflies and Hector’s Favorite Place.
*Review copies from the publisher.