Monday, September 7, 2015

Nonfiction Monday: Before We Eat from farm to table by Pat Brisson, illustrated by Mary Azarian

Simple, rhyming text takes the reader through the process of creating food, starting with planting, tending and harvesting plants and caring for animals. The next step is packaging and transport, then the grocery store, shopping, and preparing a meal. The book ends with a spread featuring all the people involved in the food cycle.

I'd like to add more books on this subject and this one includes a wide variety of processes and is aimed at very young children, but there are a couple things that make me hesitant to add it.

It focuses on what looks like family farms and local, organic produce and animals, but pictures the food being transported in semitrucks. I like the idea of local, organic food, but the practical reality of where I live is that not many people can afford to purchase it in stores. The farmer's markets we have don't include the variety of foods pictured here. I also felt the animals being included and showing gathering eggs, milking cows but nothing of the meat process (seriously, what else were you planning to do with those pigs?) is a bit disingenuous.

There is a decent variety of races and ages pictured, as well as some children involved in the work. However, I'm not really thrilled with the blocky woodcut style of the illustrations. I wanted a lot more information in the book than was available and something that fitted more exactly in my local area.

Verdict: This publisher's titles are a little more expensive and this wasn't quite what I wanted, so I'm going to pass on it. However, if you are looking for books to introduce the food cycle to very young children this could be a good choice.

ISBN: 9780884483526; Published 2014 by Tilbury House; Borrowed from another library in my consortium

No comments: