The Trellis and the Seed: A Book of Encouragement for All Ages

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9780142403174: The Trellis and the Seed: A Book of Encouragement for All Ages

The little seed spent the winter in a jelly glass on the top shelf of a chinacupboard. It was only a seed and very, very small. How could it ever be a vine with sweet-smelling blossoms? When spring came, the Nice Lady made a hole for the seed and planted it in her garden at the base of a trellis. It felt soft in the hole, but also cold and dark. Don't worry, said the Earth. God has planned something beautiful for you. The little seed did not believe it. But as time passed, and the sun shone, and the rain fell, the little seed began to feel something unexpected. . . .

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Review:

Subtitled a "Story of Encouragement for All Ages," the Trellis and the Seed tells the story of how "God has planned something beautiful" for even the tiniest, most unassuming little seed.

The tiny seed begins its mysterious journey in the hands of the seemingly omnipotent "Nice Lady," who predicts--much to the seed's disbelief--that it will make a "beautiful vine with sweet-smelling blossoms." Even as the Nice Lady plants the seed, erects an ambitious trellis, waits for rain, adds fertilizer, and performs all her other nurserial oblations, the seed continues to be baffled by its caretaker's faith. ("It was only a seed, and very, very small. How could it ever be a beautiful vine with blossoms?") How indeed? Suffice it to say, God doesn't send a crafty bird to eat the seed in a harrowing third-act changeup.

Jan Karon's story of patience and faith shows the same folksy charm that infuses her Mitford Years series, and her gentle words find a soothing complement in the skilled, muted watercolors of Robert Gantt Steele (of the Her Story series). (Ages 4 to 8) --Paul Hughes

About the Author:

Jan Karon, born Janice Meredith Wilson in the foothills of North Carolina, was named after the title of a popular novel, Janice Meredith.

Jan wrote her first novel at the age of ten. "The manuscript was written on Blue Horse notebook paper, and was, for good reason, kept hidden from my sister. When she found it, she discovered the one curse word I had, with pounding heart, included in someone's speech. For Pete's sake, hadn't Rhett Butler used that very same word and gotten away with it? After my grandmother's exceedingly focused reproof, I've written books without cussin' ever since."

Several years ago, Karon left a successful career in advertising to move to the mountain village of Blowing Rock, North Carolina, and write books. "I stepped out on faith to follow my lifelong dream of being an author," she says. "I made real sacrifices and took big risks. But living, it seems to me, is largely about risk."

Enthusiastic booksellers across the country have introduced readers of all ages to Karon's heartwarming books. At Home in Mitford, Karon's first book in the Mitford series, was nominated for an ABBY by the American Booksellers Association in 1996 and again in 1997. Bookstore owner, Shirley Sprinkle, says, "The Mitford Books have been our all-time fiction bestsellers since we went in business twenty-five years ago. We've sold 10,000 of Jan's books and don't see any end to the Mitford phenomenon."

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