Up In the Garden and Down in the Dirt by Kate Messner with art by Christopher Silas Neal

Published by Chronicle Books

Summary:  A little girl and her grandmother plant a garden in spring, care for plants in the summer, and harvest in the fall.  While they watch what is happening up in the garden, there is plenty of activity down in the dirt.  Many animals make their homes in both places, some helpful to the garden plants and some harmful.  The last few pages list the sixteen animals pictured in the book and give a bit more information on their roles in the garden.

Pros:  This is a perfect beginning-of-summer book to take into the garden.  Readers will enjoy finding the different life forms pictured in the bold, beautiful illustrations.

Cons:  The picture of the garter snake about to chomp a grasshopper may give you nightmares.

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