The Golden Glow is one of those books where the title really describes the contents – this book truly glows.

Title: The Golden Glow
Author and Illustrator: Benjamin Flouw
Rating: 9
Source: Tundra Books for review

Description from Goodreads:

Wes Anderson’s Fantastic Mr. Fox meets Richard Scarry’s Best Word Book Ever in this stylish picture book about a quest for a rare and mysterious plant.

Fox loves nature. There’s nothing he enjoys more than reading about and picking flowers. One evening he comes across a rare specimen in his old botany book — the golden glow, a plant from the Wellhidden family, found only in the mountains . . . a plant that has yet to be described. Fascinated, Fox decides to set off on a quest in search of the mysterious Golden Glow. He packs his knapsack, a map, a compass, a flashlight, a sleeping bag and other items for his hike. Along the way Fox observes many different kinds of trees and plants. He also encounters woodland friends who help him make it to the summit of the mountain. But when Fox eventually stumbles upon the object of his quest, he makes a surprising decision.

With spreads of educational content interspersed throughout, The Golden Glow is a charming story that details the simple pleasures of a nature hike and celebrates observing the beauty of nature.

What I Thought:

In The Golden Glow Benjamin Flouw tells a beautiful story about a fox on a mission – to collect the rarest and most special flower in the world. The journey isn’t easy however, and he must ask for lots of help along the way. And when he finally summits the mountain and finds the object of his search, (SPOILER ALERT) he decides that the flower looks much more wonderful at the top of the mountain than it ever would in a vase in his house. So he decides to leave it, and, content with his detailed drawing, treks back down the mountain.

The illustrations are gorgeous and evocative, and Flouw’s distinctive geometric style lends an elegance to the story. Check out his website to see more of his incredible work. There are so many of his pictures I would love for my house!

I love that it teaches kids the hiking rule, “Take nothing but pictures, leave nothing but footprints.” Nature is always more beautiful when you leave it where it belongs. This prompted a good discussion with Evelyn about how if we take things from nature then other people won’t be able to enjoy them. And if everyone who hiked picked even a few flowers, there wouldn’t be any left!

This would be a perfect book for a unit on nature, or for a nature facility or outdoor education teacher to have in their curriculum.

What Evelyn Thought:

The Golden Glow was a nice book. Though the golden glow flower in the book was kind of shiny, and I like shiny things, so that was cool. It was a good story, and I liked that it was surprising that the golden glow was right beside him when he sat down! I want to learn more about the forget-me-not plant, because that’s a weird name for a flower. I liked the pages where it teaches you stuff, like about the sub-alpine zone and the flower page. And I also liked the pictures because they were very nice looking.