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Reviewed by Emily-Jane Hills Orford for Readers' Favorite
Did you know gnomes are magical? In fact, it is believed that “gnomes bring a touch of magic to any garden they live in.” So why would someone throw away a gnome garden ornament? Margaret lived alone and spent most of her time tending her beautiful garden, with her trusty dog, Daisy. She was surprised to find a gnome discarded at a local garden center. Since she didn’t have any ornaments in her garden, and she was quite taken with the little gnome, she carried it to her car, planning to clean it up and repaint it so it looked as good as new. The events that transpired next were nothing short of pure magic: “She was in awe. The garden was beyond beautiful. It was magical.” The gnome, who she discovered by a name written on its shoe was Normy, had found his forever home with Margaret and Daisy in the beautiful garden they tended.
Cindy Shirley’s picture book story, A Garden Home for Normy the Gnome, is as magical as the gnome itself. This whimsical story was inspired by her beloved grandmother who loved to garden and often won awards and local recognition for both her garden and what she grew in it. Written in simple language so young readers can follow along, this tender, compassionate story is all about believing in and caring for the magic that is all around us, thanks to Mother Nature. The plot is a journey of discovery, unexpected friendships, and adorable characters. The illustrations are bright, colorful, and spectacular, certainly adding to the magical element of the story. Beautifully told with love and compassion. I always enjoy a good gardening story, especially if the story includes a dog.