Monday, January 2, 2023

Today's read... A Good Deed Can Grow by Jennifer Chambliss Bertman

We're going to start off the year with good vibes and a hit picture book written by a New York Times bestselling middle grade author...and I'll be seeing if I can get my hands on one of her books from her Book Scavenger Series, too, since they sound so interesting! But today, I'm starting with this one and hoping it will be sweet and inspiring and not run into preachiness along the way (always my biggest fear).

Shall we see if it's one to pick up?

by Jennifer Chambliss Berman
Illustrated by Holly Hatam
Christy Ottaviano Books
Picture Book
ages 4 to 6
32 pages


Discover the ripple effects of doing a good deed in this interactive picture book about the importance of kindness.  

A good deed can grow like a seed. . . . 

Join a loving community as they work to create a better world. Whether planting a garden or visiting a sick friend, picking up litter or playing music at the senior center, kind actions—no matter how big or small—can spread like a ripple, impacting the lives of others for the better.  

Jennifer Chambliss Bertman’s inspiring text and Holly Hatam’s joyful illustrations celebrate how anyone, young or old, can make a difference. It all starts with a good deed.



Good feelings flow with the inspiring message of helping others in the most cheerful and simple ways.

This book centers around the warming message that helping others does make a better world, even if the act seems super small and unimportant. It flows in a more general direction without specific details. Rather, the text offers a more poetic, happy vibe, while the illustrations present various situations, where people are helping one another.

The illustrations are well done and hold tons of positivity. They are a little busier, in so far that a broader scene is displayed with various individuals doing various activities...most of which are subtle examples of someone helping someone else or getting along well. It's uplifting and does allow listeners to discover the various events on their own and point them out. These mostly take place outdoors and allow nature to glow with sunshine. It is the type of book to put a smile on the face.

The text flows very well and offers only a sentence or two on each spread. The words hold a poetic atmosphere and keep the positive notes high. It does make for an easy read-aloud, although I believe the strength lies more in the illustrations, since the theme is demonstrated here and this is where the most discussion material will be found. And it easily opens up to discussions. The idea behind the title, that a good deed grows, is less evident than the display of the vast array of forms a 'good deed' can take and how simple it is to do. It's well done for anyone wanting to explore this theme... or simply cuddle up with a happy read.

And here they are...

Jennifer Chambliss Bertman is the author of the New York Times bestselling Book Scavenger series as well as Sisterhood of Sleuths. She holds an MFA in creative writing and has worked in a variety of roles with children and in publishing. Born and raised in the San Francisco Bay Area, Jennifer now lives in Colorado with her family. She invites you to visit her at

Holly Hatam is the illustrator of the #1 New York Times bestselling Dear Girl and Dear Boy, as well as Unicorns Are RealMade by Maxine, and Jack (Not Jackie). She loves hugging trees, drinking tea, sniffing books, music, animations and most importantly, unicorns. Holly lives in Waterloo, Ontario, with her wacky husband and even wackier son. She invites you to be transported into her magical world by visiting

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