The Books

If You Hold a Seed

by Ellie MacKay

One Potato Review

There are already hundreds of mediocre picture books around to remind us what happens when you plant a seed since Ruth Krauss’s gargantuan carrot was harvested almost seventy years ago, but it’s what happens when you plant a seed and hold onto a dream over many years and changing seasons that is the subject of Ellie MacKay’s slightly ambiguous first title. Your first impression here will be that this looks like nothing you have ever seen: MacKay works with paper cutouts in variously lit “theaters” – but you don’t need to know that. Except that all of this forethought and preparation has fittingly paid off in a story that is finally as surprising as it is nakedly inspirational. Here’s hoping MacKay sticks with it, and here’s hoping we recognize the uniqueness of her vision. For toddlers and sentimental grown-ups alike.

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