Picture Book Review: Aurora’s Orchid
Author: Vicky Weber
Illustrator: Viktoria Skakandi
Publisher: Trunk Up Books (2019)
Age Range: 8-11
Grade Level: 3-5
Amazon Synopsis: Aurora, a beloved mom to four young children, is determined to create memories with them in her childhood home in Rincon, Puerto Rico. One year, she plants an orchid with her children and spends the summer teaching them to tend to it in the hopes that it would grow into the beautiful plant she knew it could. As the days, weeks, months, and even years pass, Aurora teaches her children patience as they skeptically wait for the flowers to bloom. This heartwarming tale–based on a true story–shows how the thoughtful guidance of a loving mother could teach patience while leaving a lasting and beautiful impact on those around her.
“Aurora’s Orchid” is a lovely heartwarming tale about family, patience, dedication and love. Based on a true story about the author’s abuela (grandmother), it’s a heartfelt tribute to a special woman. Orchids being my absolute favorite flower, I knew I wouldn’t be able to resist this story and I was right. It’s a truly beautiful story that will stay in my heart.
When Aurora shows her four children una planta (a plant) they wonder why es muy especial (it’s very special) because it doesn’t look special, in fact, it’s quite boring. Aurora tells her children that it will one day be the most beautiful flower they’ve ever seen. Years go by, the family nurturing and caring for the plant together. Finally, it blooms and it’s a bittersweet event for the whole family.
I love the author’s writing style. She creates a warm and inviting atmosphere with her words, drawing the reader into the story. She effectively inserts bits of the Spanish language into the story, just the right phrases that do not need translating as the meanings are revealed in the context of the story. Not only is this a touching story, it also introduces a culture that many kids will identify with and others will appreciate learning about.
And learn they will, about patience, love, perseverance and the meaning of family. I even learned something about orchids – I’ve never heard of attaching them to the trunk of a tree but apparently the roots take hold to the trunk over time and grows right along with the tree – fascinating!
The illustrations are inviting, adding sensory layers to the loving, familial feel of the story. I love the cover with the beautiful orchid in full bloom!
Overall, “Aurora’s Orchid” is a wonderful story that will appeal to both young and not-so-young audiences alike. Though it is a picture book, early readers may find it a bit of a challenge to read. The story is actually geared toward the slightly older crowd, ages 8 and up. That said, I think little ones will enjoy having this story read to them over and over again as the love radiates off the pages. I got goosebumps reading it and will keep it to read to my young granddaughter who will be born sometime in April. Hey, it’s never too soon to start cultivating a reading habit and love of books!
About the Author
I obtained a copy of this book to review from the author in exchange for an honest review. Need a picture book review? Contact me!