The Digger and the Flower

The Digger and the Flower

Book - 2018
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Baker & Taylor
The creator of Beyond the Pond presents an environmental-awareness story that traces the experiences of a lonely digger in an industrial world where his entire perspective is changed by his discovery of a flower. 50,000 first printing.


From the acclaimed author/artist of Beyond the Pond and Rulers of the Playground comes a breathtaking new book with a powerful message about the environment, perfect for fans of Peter Brown’s The Curious Garden and Kadir Nelson’s If You Plant a Seed.

Each day, the big trucks go to work. They scoop and hoist and push.

But when Digger discovers something growing in the rubble, he sets in motion a series of events that will change him, and the city, forever.

"This story contains bold graphic illustrations and a wonderful message about the environment," proclaims in their article "18 Must-Read Picture Books of 2018."

& Taylor

When Digger discovers a flower growing in the center of the town being built, his entire perspective changes.

Publisher: New York :, Balzer + Bray, an imprint of HarperCollinsPublishers,, 2018
Edition: First edition
Copyright Date: ©2018
ISBN: 9780062424334
Characteristics: 1 volume (unpaged) : colour illustrations ; 27 cm


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Dec 19, 2019

The illustrations are striking, and the part of the message about caring for nature is sweet. But I have serious issues with the idea that the city is allowed to be built over every last scrap of land and that the Digger takes the flower seeds far, far away from the city where no machines had ever been. To me, this clearly perpetuates the idea that cities/people and nature are separate and incompatible. That is exactly the opposite of the message we need now, when we must be repairing and healing our relationship to other beings and to the land.
St. Paul is a wonderful example of nurturing flowers, trees, butterflies, and bees within the city. We should celebrate that and work toward even greater integration, not send the flowers far, far away.

jcljessicaj Nov 18, 2019

The machines start out working as they do, and then digger finds a flower. He protects and shields it until the other machines take over its spot to keep building. Digger is sad but finds the flower's seeds, and plants them far away from the city. This story has parts where it teaches new words that show what each machine does, and it also shows how to grow and care for plants. The best of both worlds!

Chapel_Hill_SharonD May 10, 2019

This thoughtful story about the relationship between progress and respect for nature is told through simple yet expressive artwork. It put me in mind of Virginia Burton's "The Little House," and I can't give a better recommendation than that.

Oct 22, 2018

I love this book due to the simple illustrations and meaningful message about kindness. While there is a wonderful story line, there is also plenty of room to have a discussion with your child. This book has been one of my top baby shower/ preschool party gifts in 2018.

Jun 20, 2018

Really nice book with very pleasing illustrations. You can have a conversation with your little one with this!

ArapahoeLaurieAnne Apr 30, 2018

What does the digger truck find? Can he save it from being gone forever?

ArapahoeSteffen Apr 28, 2018

This was an amazing read with very appealing illustrations. Digger, Crane and Dozer really pop against the predominantly black and white cityscapes. Then the ending will make your heart warm. I love a Things That Go book with a plot and this one has a neat message.

VaughanPLDianeB Mar 07, 2018

A tender story with simple text and drawings -- a digging machine nurtures a flower to grow despite the urban sprawl happening around it. When unable to save it, the machine thinks of a clever and peaceful alternative -- plant its seeds elsewhere. A lovely tale with several themes, including the power of small acts of kindness and the value in taking care of nature.

ArapahoeKati Feb 23, 2018

I loved how much big Digger cared for something as small as a flower. Beauty is everywhere.

Feb 14, 2018

This is a sweet story, but I'm not so sure about the message. When there's no more space to build in the town, Digger takes the three remaining flower seeds and goes far out into the countryside to plant and nurture them. Very nice. But I wish that the message had been that space can be found for grass/trees/flowers, even within a city.

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