88 books like What Will Grow?

By Jennifer Ward, Susie Ghahremani (illustrator),

Here are 88 books that What Will Grow? fans have personally recommended if you like What Will Grow?. Shepherd is a community of 11,000+ authors and super readers sharing their favorite books with the world.

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Book cover of Growing Vegetable Soup

Kari Percival Author Of How to Say Hello to a Worm: A First Guide to Outside

From my list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden.

Why am I passionate about this?

When offered a plot at the community garden, I thought it would be fun to invite other families to learn to grow food together. As a science teacher, I knew that for toddlers, digging in the dirt and growing plants for food could plant seeds for a life-long love of exploring nature, hands-on science inquiry, environmental stewardship, and joy in healthy eating. As we gardened, I noticed what questions children and their parents had, and how we found the answers together. I wrote the picture book How to Say Hello to A Worm: A First Guide to Outside to inspire more kids and their parents to get their hands dirty. 

Kari's book list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden

Kari Percival Why did Kari love this book?

What is the point of gardening? Why all this digging around in the dirt? Lois Ehlert's Growing Vegetable Soup brings us through the steps and meaning of growing food, right up to the point: the empowering and delicious pay-off moment of making soup and eating it. But check out all her books on the theme. Ehlert's bright colors and shapes make an irresistible read, perfect for toddlers and preschoolers. 

By Lois Ehlert,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Growing Vegetable Soup as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

A book for the very young child which tells the story of a father and child who plant seeds in the garden. The book shows how the tiny plants grow and are cared for, and finally how the fully-grown vegetables are gathered up and taken into the kitchen to be prepared for soup.


Book cover of Secrets of the Vegetable Garden

Kari Percival Author Of How to Say Hello to a Worm: A First Guide to Outside

From my list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden.

Why am I passionate about this?

When offered a plot at the community garden, I thought it would be fun to invite other families to learn to grow food together. As a science teacher, I knew that for toddlers, digging in the dirt and growing plants for food could plant seeds for a life-long love of exploring nature, hands-on science inquiry, environmental stewardship, and joy in healthy eating. As we gardened, I noticed what questions children and their parents had, and how we found the answers together. I wrote the picture book How to Say Hello to A Worm: A First Guide to Outside to inspire more kids and their parents to get their hands dirty. 

Kari's book list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden

Kari Percival Why did Kari love this book?

​When I was very small, planting peas in the garden with my grandfather, I felt like a sorcerer's apprentice being initiated into a realm of magic. Carron Brown's Secrets of the Vegetable Garden brings me back to that age of wonder by setting up mysteries to solve. Holding pages up to the sunlight reveals the answers to mysteries and riddles, and shows us what is secretly happening: potatoes growing under the earth, or seeds forming inside a fruit.

By Carron Brown,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Secrets of the Vegetable Garden as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

What is hidden in the world around us? For ages 3 and up, the uniquely designed Shine-A-Light series of books uncovers the facts behind a diverse range of places and topics through hidden images that are revealed by light. First, view a full-colour scene and read about what is pictured - but what else is there? Shine a torch behind the page, or hold it up to the light, to reveal what is hidden. Turn the page to read fun facts about the hidden image in black and white. A world of surprises awaits!

Discover the hidden wonders of the…


Book cover of The Talking Vegetables

Kari Percival Author Of How to Say Hello to a Worm: A First Guide to Outside

From my list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden.

Why am I passionate about this?

When offered a plot at the community garden, I thought it would be fun to invite other families to learn to grow food together. As a science teacher, I knew that for toddlers, digging in the dirt and growing plants for food could plant seeds for a life-long love of exploring nature, hands-on science inquiry, environmental stewardship, and joy in healthy eating. As we gardened, I noticed what questions children and their parents had, and how we found the answers together. I wrote the picture book How to Say Hello to A Worm: A First Guide to Outside to inspire more kids and their parents to get their hands dirty. 

Kari's book list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden

Kari Percival Why did Kari love this book?

Why garden at all? Isn't it a lot of work? I can always count on The Talking Vegetables, a retelling of a traditional African story, to delight toddlers and preschoolers. They revel in Spider's laziness as he shirks helping neighbors grow food at the community garden, and are just as delighted when he gets his comeuppance as the insulted vegetables refuse to let him get away without contributing to the team effort.

By Won-Ldy Paye, Margaret H. Lippert, Julie Paschkis (illustrator)

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Talking Vegetables as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 3, 4, 5, and 6.

What is this book about?

A wonderful folktale from the award-winning authors of Mrs. Chicken and the Hungry Crocodile The villagers are planting a garden, but Spider refuses to help. He has plenty of rice to eat, so why should he do all that hard work? Then one day Spider gets tired of plain rice and decides to pick some of the delicious produce. Imagine his surprise when the vegetables start talking!
The talented team that created the award-winning titles Mrs. Chicken and the Hungry Crocodile and Head, Body, Legs join together once again for a laugh-out-loud funny Liberian story. The Talking Vegetables is a…


Book cover of Pancakes, Pancakes!

Kari Percival Author Of How to Say Hello to a Worm: A First Guide to Outside

From my list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden.

Why am I passionate about this?

When offered a plot at the community garden, I thought it would be fun to invite other families to learn to grow food together. As a science teacher, I knew that for toddlers, digging in the dirt and growing plants for food could plant seeds for a life-long love of exploring nature, hands-on science inquiry, environmental stewardship, and joy in healthy eating. As we gardened, I noticed what questions children and their parents had, and how we found the answers together. I wrote the picture book How to Say Hello to A Worm: A First Guide to Outside to inspire more kids and their parents to get their hands dirty. 

Kari's book list on for toddlers on why and how to grow a food garden

Kari Percival Why did Kari love this book?

My toddlers loved Eric Carle's Pancakes, Pancakes! – and enjoyed hearing it over and over. Enticed into the story by Eric Carle's vivid and lively illustrations, you'll follow Jack as he asks his mom for pancakes for breakfast, then goes on an out-sized quest for all the ingredients from all over the farm and countryside. 

By Eric Carle,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Pancakes, Pancakes! as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

By cutting and grinding the wheat for flour, Jack starts from scratch to help make his breakfast pancake.


Book cover of Van Gogh on Demand: China and the Readymade

David Joselit Author Of Heritage and Debt: Art in Globalization

From my list on art and globalization.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have been professionally involved with contemporary art since the 1980s, when I was a curator at the Institute of Contemporary Art in Boston. In the forty years since I've seen an enormous shift in the orientation of American curators and scholars from Western art to a global perspective. After earning my PhD at Harvard, and writing several books on contemporary art, I wanted to tackle the challenge of a truly comparative contemporary art history. To do so, I've depended on the burgeoning scholarship from a new more diverse generation of art historians, as well as on many decades of travel and research. My book Heritage and Debt is an attempt to synthesize that knowledge. 

David's book list on art and globalization

David Joselit Why did David love this book?

This engaging book looks at globalization and art from a perspective well beyond the conventional art world. Wong analyzes the work of artists in the Chinese "urban village" of Dafen where some five million paintings are produced a year–copies of Western masterpieces. Rather than viewing this industry condescendingly, Wong takes Dafen as a laboratory for understanding what qualities make an artist, and how creativity exists even in contexts of reproduction and replication. 

By Winnie Won Yin Wong,

Why should I read it?

2 authors picked Van Gogh on Demand as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

In the Guangdong province in southeastern China lies Dafen, a village that houses thousands of workers who paint Van Goghs, Da Vincis, Warhols, and other Western masterpieces, producing an astonishing five million paintings a year. To write about life and work in Dafen, Winnie Wong infiltrated this world, investigating the claims of conceptual artists who made projects there; working as a dealer; apprenticing as a painter; surveying merchants in Europe, Asia, and America; establishing relationships with local leaders; and organizing a conceptual art show for the Shanghai World Expo. The result is Van Gogh on Demand, a fascinating book about…


Book cover of It's So Amazing! A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families

Rachel Ginocchio Author Of Roads to Family: All the Ways We Come to Be

From my list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family.

Why am I passionate about this?

For as long as I can remember, my parents answered any/all of my questions about the body, puberty, and sex; often giving me more information than I actually wanted! So when friends asked me questions, I was always eager to pass on my knowledge. Who knew that years later, it would land me a master’s degree in public health (MPH), jobs in sexuality health education, and a passion for writing about human reproduction and family formation? Plus, I have personal experience on the topic: I come from a three-generation family created through adoption and foster care; and overcame the trials and tribulations of infertility with the use of assisted reproduction. 

Rachel's book list on anatomy, modern human reproduction, and family

Rachel Ginocchio Why did Rachel love this book?

When I first sat down to fully explain human reproduction to my own child, I grabbed It’s So Amazing because it included explanations of insemination and IVF – subjects that most books in the genre don’t explain.

The book also covers many topics leading up to and after conception: anatomy, puberty, gestation, birth, genetics, and family. Its graphic-novel format enables readers to digest the information-rich content in bite-sized pieces, at their own pace. The book is funny and warm, and normalizes kids’ curiosity about the body.

There are two other books in this series: It’s Not the Stork and It’s Perfectly Normal. They are all great books to add to any family’s collection. 

By Robie H. Harris, Michael Emberley (illustrator),

Why should I read it?

1 author picked It's So Amazing! A Book about Eggs, Sperm, Birth, Babies, and Families as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it. This book is for kids age 7, 8, 9, and 10.

What is this book about?

From the trusted team of Robie H. Harris and Michael Emberley, this classic resource for younger children receives its most ambitious update yet.

How does a baby begin and how is it born? How did I begin? Why are some parts of kids’ bodies different from some parts of other kids’ bodies? Most younger kids have questions about reproduction, babies, love, sex, and gender too. Some also have concerns. For over twenty years, It’s So Amazing! has provided children age seven and up with the honest answers they’re looking for through age-appropriate, reassuring words and accurate, up-to-date, inclusive art. Throughout…


Book cover of Mommy Laid An Egg: Or, Where Do Babies Come From?

Sara Zaske Author Of Achtung Baby: An American Mom on the German Art of Raising Self-Reliant Children

From my list on raising self-reliant children.

Why am I passionate about this?

I am a writer who lived in Germany for more than six years with my family. That experience opened my eyes to a different way of parenting in a country that had learned hard lessons about too much authoritarian control. It also taught me that much of what we believe is “true” about raising kids is actually cultural—and therefore, can be changed. In addition to my book about raising kids in Germany, Achtung Baby, I’ve written extensively on raising self-reliant kids, including articles in The New York Times, Wall Street Journal, and Time.com among others.

Sara's book list on raising self-reliant children

Sara Zaske Why did Sara love this book?

When my daughter was in first grade in Germany, her teacher read this book to her entire class. Sex education is considered a right in Germany since knowing how your body works is essential for your reproductive health. In the U.S. it’s left to us as parents to teach sex ed to our kids—which I’d argue is less than ideal, given the high costs of keeping kids ignorant. (The U.S. has higher rates of teen AIDS, teen pregnancy, and abortion than Germany.) If you don’t know how to broach this subject, this book is a good, age-appropriate, place to start when your young kids first begin asking questions.

By Babette Cole,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Mommy Laid An Egg as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Two children explain to their parents, using their own drawings, where babies come from.


Book cover of Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives: How Evolution Has Shaped Women's Health

Deena Emera Author Of A Brief History of the Female Body: An Evolutionary Look at How and Why the Female Form Came to Be

From my list on capturing the magnificence of female biology.

Why am I passionate about this?

I have spent my career studying the evolution of female biology. My PhD thesis was on the evolution of pregnancy and menstruation. I am currently a researcher at the Buck Institute for Research on Aging studying the evolution of menopause. I also inhabit a female body and have a personal interest in understanding how and why my own body works the way it does. As a lifelong teacher who has taught high school, college, and graduate students, I am passionate about sharing what I know with other women. I hope you enjoy these fascinating books about the female body and its amazing evolutionary history. 

Deena's book list on capturing the magnificence of female biology

Deena Emera Why did Deena love this book?

Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives is an academic but accessible book about how our evolutionary history has shaped women’s health.

Trevathan tackles issues that are relevant and important to women, such as early puberty in girls, breast cancer, the difficulties encountered during pregnancy and childbirth, and the symptoms experienced during the menopause transition.

Her thesis—which has shaped much of my own work and writing—is that many of the health challenges women face today are the result of a mismatch between our ancient bodies and modern lifestyles. Trevathan helps readers understand what these mismatches are and suggests lifestyle changes that can improve our health and well-being. 

By Wenda Trevathan,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

How has bipedalism impacted human childbirth? Do PMS and postpartum depression have specific, maybe even beneficial, functions? These are only two of the many questions that specialists in evolutionary medicine seek to answer, and that anthropologist Wenda Trevathan addresses in Ancient Bodies, Modern Lives.

Exploring a range of women's health issues that may be viewed through an evolutionary lens, specifically focusing on reproduction, Trevathan delves into issues such as the medical consequences of early puberty in girls, the impact of migration, culture change, and poverty on reproductive health, and how fetal growth retardation affects health in later life. Hypothesizing that…


Book cover of Sex in the Sea: Our Intimate Connection with Sex-Changing Fish, Romantic Lobsters, Kinky Squid, and Other Salty Erotica of the Deep

Danna Staaf Author Of Nursery Earth: The Hidden World of Baby Animals and the Amazing Ingenuity of Life

From my list on babies and parenthood throughout the animal kingdom.

Why am I passionate about this?

Like most children, I adored baby animals from an early age. I bonded deeply with a pet kitten; I campaigned (unsuccessfully but perennially) for a puppy; I delighted in caterpillars. In college, my biology classes introduced me to a profusion of marine larval forms, and a fascination with the true diversity of animal babies fully gripped me. I eventually earned a PhD in the biology of squid babies and, shortly afterward, produced two human babies of my own. I now live with my human family, a cat, and a garden full of grubs, caterpillars, maggots, and innumerable other babies. I read and write about science and nature, especially the intersection of the weird and the adorable.

Danna's book list on babies and parenthood throughout the animal kingdom

Danna Staaf Why did Danna love this book?

Similar to Dr. Tatiana’s Sex Advice, this book made me laugh and gasp at scandalous true stories of reproductive biology. What really captured my attention, though, were the unexpected ways that human actions are affecting the courtship, mating, and spawning of animals that might seem beyond our reach.

Knowing that we can unintentionally inhibit the intimate lives of other species through pollution and climate change really brings home the importance of reforming our behavior.

By Marah J. Hardt,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked Sex in the Sea as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Forget the Kama Sutra. When it comes to inventive sex acts, just look to the sea. There we find the elaborate mating rituals of armored lobsters; giant right whales engaging in a lively threesome whilst holding their breath; full moon sex parties of groupers and daily mating blitzes by blueheaded wrasse. Deep-sea squid perform inverted 69s, while hermaphrodite sea slugs link up in giant sex loops. From doubly endowed sharks to the maze-like vaginas of some whales, Sex in the Sea is a journey unlike any other to explore the staggering ways life begets life beneath the waves. Beyond a…


Book cover of The Weed Lady

Kay Watkins Author Of Family of the Heart

From my list on women's struggles with reproduction issues.

Why am I passionate about this?

Although I have never been faced with an unwanted pregnancy, I lived through an era when women did not have easy choices available to them. Abortions were illegal while there was also tremendous stigma attached to those who choose to give their babies up for adoption or even decided to raise their babies without a male involved. Many times, the family of origin refused to support these women, turning their back on them. Most often, the men were not held accountable and disappeared with no further responsibilities.

Kay's book list on women's struggles with reproduction issues

Kay Watkins Why did Kay love this book?

This is a story of friendships between four women who are from outside appearances very different. Over the course of the book, one passes away from natural causes from old age while two fall in love. One of the ladies who falls in love decides to get pregnant without telling the other. Complications ensue and the friendships are challenged.

By Shea R. Embry,

Why should I read it?

1 author picked The Weed Lady as one of their favorite books, and they share why you should read it.

What is this book about?

Jesi's obsession with a woman she doesn't know takes over her life. She alienates everyone she loves until realizing that if she didn't make a change she would lose them all forever. Her solution is found after a couple glasses of Jack Daniels and her decision will change the lives of all of them, Jesi, Nicole, Rachael, Jules, George, and the woman of her obsession, The Weed Lady. In genuine Jesi style, she takes them all on a journey that is fully energized leaving never a dull moment as her every move sometimes surprises even herself. 





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