Through the Looking Glass Children's Book Reviews

Fern Verdant and the Silver Rose

Fern Verdant and the Silver Rose

Diana Leszczynski
For ages 8 to 12
Unabridged audiobook (CD)
Performed/read by: Kate Reading
Blackstone Audiobooks, Inc., 2008   ISBN: 978-1433253812

Fern Verdant has not had what you would call a traditional childhood. Both of her parents are botanists, and they think that plants are just about the most wonderful things on the planet; which is why they named their only daughter after a plant. Fern is able to cope with her parent's passion pretty well until the day when they decide to leave the town where Fern is happy, to move to the town of Nedlaw in Oregon. Fern's father Olivier discovers a new kind a fern and he decides to move to Oregon so that he can study the plant in its natural habitat.

Just when Fern thinks that her life cannot possibly get any worse, something terrible happens to her mother. While Lily Verdant is at someone's house taking care of a rare silver rose that is sick, she apparently falls off a cliff. For a while, Fern believes that her mother is dead until she gets a message, via a plant, that this is not the case at all. Quite out of the blue, Fern discovers that she, like her mother, is able to communicate with plants. Somewhere Lily Verdant is in trouble and Fern has to do something to help her.

This delightful tale of high adventure will take listeners on an extraordinary journey around the world. Listeners will meet runaway orphans, a villain bent on world domination, a colorful cast of plant characters, and members of a secret society. Not only is this story entertaining, but it also has a meaningful environmental message to share with young people.

Kate Reading's reading of this audio title is spirited and thoroughly enjoyable. She gives all the characters unique voices, and she manages to make the plants funny, touching, and completely believable.