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Uno's Garden

4.18 of 5 stars 4.18  ·  rating details  ·  476 ratings  ·  57 reviews
When Uno arrives in the forest one beautiful day, there are many fascinating and extraordinary animals there to greet him. And one entirely unexceptional Snortlepig.

Uno loves the forest so much, he decides to live there. But, in time, a little village grows up around his house. Then a town, then a city. . . and soon Uno realises that the animals and plants have begun to di
Hardcover, 44 pages
Published September 1st 2006 by Harry N. Abrams (first published 2006)
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Possum Magic by Mem FoxAnimalia by Graeme BaseDiary of a Wombat by Jackie FrenchWhere is the Green Sheep? by Mem FoxWhere the Forest Meets the Sea by Jeannie Baker
Best Australian literature for children
16th out of 257 books — 106 voters
The Lorax by Dr. SeussThe Great Kapok Tree by Lynne CherryOwl Moon by Jane YolenThe Carrot Seed by Ruth KraussUno's Garden by Graeme Base
"Green" Picture Books
5th out of 140 books — 90 voters

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Community Reviews

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Jack Kirby and the X-man
Well beyond X-man’s current capabilities – but definitely on the list to read to him when he’s older.

After slightly disappointing me with the straightforwardness of Jungle Drums Graeme has outdone himself in this book. Truly tremendous fun in playing hide-and-seek with all of the plants and animals (he conveniently provides a list of what to find, and how many!).

At the simplest level this is a relatively simple counting game – the animals count down from 10 to 1. But the back of the book explain
Book 14, Day 14 - Mini Family Classics from News Limited.

Author/Illustrator: Graeme Base
First Published: 2006

An environmental story of hope and rebirth focussing on original (made up), creative animals, plants and buildings. Full of visually striking images to make the reader look further into the story while overlaying the whole with a math lesson (Fibonacci numbers, as well as basic counting). The story is sweet and intriguing, making the book an interesting addition to our library.

Graeme Base
Kris Wellen
A clever, thought-provoking book for children, and adults alike. It's quite easy for a parent to tire of reading the same book over and over, but Uno's Garden keeps showing me new layers.

Example 1: Read the story for a somber, yet hopeful story of our environment

Example 2: When you tire of that, start looking for the mathematical equations listed in the top right of the book.

Example 3: Done with that? Now start looking for the Snortle Pig buried deep within the pictures. Trust me- he's there,
Highly recommend all of Graeme Base's books. You always get a good story, fabulous illustrations, clever visual tricks, and a puzzle or mystery to solve.

This book also adds a very strong, touching story about man's impact on the environment in a gentle, effective way for kids. The characters and animals are charming and will appeal to kids. The story arcs from becoming sad back to optimistic for the future.

In addition to the story, this book can be gone through again and again as a counting book
Baylee Washburn
The illustrations in this picture book take on a cartoon style as certain physical characteristics of the characters are greatly exaggerated. The characters depicted in the illustrations of this story have large heads and even larger noses that are clearly out of proportion with the rest of their bodies. These physical exaggerations compliment the fictional setting and imaginary creatures that are found in this story. In addition to the physical exaggerations, the illustrations are also full of ...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
I didn't find this book by Base to be as much fun as some of his others, especially Animalia. Uno's garden starts out full of lots of animals and plants, but as people begin to build in the area, the flora and fauna slowly disappear, until there are none left, and only a city remains, which the people eventually abandon. However, nature has a way of bouncing back, and gradually the animals and plants make a comeback. This time, though, the people try to build in harmony with nature, and in balan ...more
Allison Parker
Son (age 6) says...
"I like to read this book because I like to count how many buildings, how many animals, and how many plants are on these pages. My favorite animals are the Gondolopes and the Puddlebuts. I like the Featherfern plants, and the Log Cabins."

Mom says...
My son loves this book, and no wonder. There are so many ways to interact with it. The mathematical concepts are actually pretty complex (going from subtraction/addition to squares, exponents, primes), but children of any age can en
This book has gorgeous illustrations, and depending on a child's stamina, a reader can spend a long time on each page hunting for all of the psychedelic creatures and plants the author lists. The message is a somber one: if we want our Earth to last, we have to grow modestly, not exponentially as we have been. But, unlike many environmental books which can leave one feeling rather bleak, this one imagines a time when, after we've made a mess of the planet, the planet might recover with our lovin ...more
What a totally fun way to teach kids basic math skills. Adding. Subtracting. Multiplication/Squares. Even exponential growth.

I didn't find the "tree hugging" message too overbearing. Present, but conveyed in a tasteful way that will generally be met with little argument. The idea that people should be good stewards of the earth is one that generally resonates positively. How that is accomplished is another matter entirely.

This book can also really encourage kids to be creative since the world
Rose Dernoncourt
I loved this cute children's book! This author has been a favorite for ages. I am so drawn to children's books, even though I work at a high school library. YA books are good too, but there's just something about illustrations that grab me! I am a visual person,brought up in a visual generation of TV, movies, comic books, etc.
One of Base's best. It serves as a bridge from counting books to arithmetic and even powers of two, with wonderful images depicting urbanization to the point of failure, then a rebuilding of wildlife and humankind in better harmony. Adorable imaginary animals throughout. Oh, snortlepig!
Ilana Waters
I love the creativity in this book, as I do in all Graeme Base's material. It's especially apparent here in the *kind* of creatures he draws, like the people. They look almost human and yet . . . not. The animals are ones we might recognize, but as strange, new combinations of the ordinary. Add a timely message about living in harmony with the environment and fun number games, and you've got a recipe for a winner. [SPOILER] I left off one star because the protagonist dies in the middle of the bo ...more
What an amazing story about the effects humans have on the environment. Not only does it bring up questions about wildlife, habitat destruction, extinction, and death, it goes the step farther and shows how humans can learn to successfully interact with their environment. In addition to the message, this book also give children the opportunity to count (down and then up) and for the more advanced/older child, the chance to multiply. It's an environmental tale and a math lesson all in one beautif ...more
Sara Renae
Another one of our favorite picture books, Uno's Garden teaches environmental conservation through math! It is truly a must read for all children!
Jarvis Ryan
Graeme Base at his best: a magical journey for children with fantastic creatures, with many numeracy activities embedded for older readers (and basic counting for younger ones) and a strong message about the need to find a balance between industrialisation and the natural world. The outlook seems bleak but as in another of Base's books, The Waterhole, it is not too late to reverse the damage if we identify the problem and try to do something about it.

I sat with my 3-year old son and we pored ove
I've loved Graeme Base for years, so I'll ignore that this one is a little to didactic, because the critters are cool and the math is fun
A bit hard to read out aloud.
Lauren Fidler
I forgot how much I loved Graeme Base.

Fiona got this book for Christmas; thank you, Santa! It reminds me of the hours I spent pouring over the mystery of The Eleventh Hour. It's not quite so challenging - here the objective seems to be on counting - but the illustrations are adorable and the plot fun.

Yay for newness in my nostalgia.
THis is absolutely my favorite childrens' math book. It also has a wonderful environmental theme. My children love to revisit this one. We get out the calculator, (Jonah just got a new one and it is his new favorite toy,) and do the math. It is a tremendous work. We have been reading it for years. I feel like this about all of Graeme Base's books, that they can be enjoyed at different levels throughout a childs' life. Fantastic work!!
Graeme Base will always be one of my favourite authors. His beautiful illustrations are full of exquisite details that will keep kids enthralled with every page turn. This particular story is one of environmental math, and learning how to keep a balance with nature. Fun with counting for the young ones, with multiplication and exponential growth for the older ones. Lessons in being green for all ages.
This is a beautifully illustrated book about environmental balance. It's a bit of a retelling of The Lorax. and while I enjoy the pull of the story in The Lorax a bit more than this story, the illustrations in Uno's Garden are really breathtaking. My daughter and I did a little school project with it where we looked at its comparisons to The Lorax and she seemed to enjoy drawing those connections.
In terms of teaching...
This book would be a great read aloud to discuss the concept of balance and the natural consequences of urban development. It would also work in small groups to explore a ton of mathematical concepts (everything from counting down from 10 to doubling to exploring prime numbers to multiplying square numbers!). This book is so interactive and works on so many levels...really dig it!
The Styling Librarian
Uno’s Garden by Graeme Base – Grateful that my son picked this book out, I really overlooked it before this… I appreciate how you could watch the development of a community and impact the community has on the wildlife and additionally the restoration and hope by the end of the book. Quite a lovely book I’d partner with The Lorax by Dr. Seuss and The Great Paper Caper by Oliver Jeffers. – US
Angelina Justice
I love this book. It's a little sad to watch the population growth. Parents will see what is happening after just a few pages, but the children will take a little longer to catch up. There are many stories that address disappearing habitat and conservation; but I've never seen one that puts the math in numeric and visual terms so the reader truly absorbs the impact.
Kally Ansell
My son loved the illustrations in the book, love the book by Graeme Base
On a role here with the kids' books. This has incredible illustrations (Graeme Base) which keep you and your child looking for things like snortlepigs, snagglebites, lumpybums, and more. All crazily hidden in enormously detailed and colorful pictures. It's a bit long but even my 2-year-old gets through it, riveted. Highly recommended for kids AND their parents.
This a great book for the going green campaign. Uno's jungle is taken over by people and building and soon there are no plants or animals. Uno keeps his garden in his yard and once he passes his children continue to watch over it. Soon it grows and grows and things change. There are more plants and animals and it is even more beautiful.
Nobody compares to the beauty and environment-conscious Graeme Base! Stunning color and artwork combined with deeper messages about nature, Uno's Garden and The Water Hole are two books that were on our favorite list of kids' books for years. My son enjoyed them most of all when he was in Kindergarten and First Grade.
As all of Graeme Base's books, this one is beautifully illustrated. The story is interesting and moving as well as a great jumping off point to talk about the environment with kids. We have read this one over and over again for years. Bonus - lots of math and finding games hidden within the narrative and illustrations.
Aug 15, 2009 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
While looking for "Enigma," I came upon this book and just had to check it out. It is an interesting tale that combines a lot of math and an environmental message with fun illustrations and crazy creatures. It's somewhat futuristic and fantastic in places and overall, it's just a fun book to read aloud.
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Graeme Rowland Base is a successful Australian author and artist of picture books that have been sold internationally. He is perhaps best known for his second book, Animalia published in 1986, and third book The Eleventh Hour which was released in 1989.
He was born in England but moved to Australia with his family at the age of eight and has lived there ever since. He attended Box Hill High School
More about Graeme Base...
Animalia The Eleventh Hour The Discovery of Dragons The Water Hole The Sign of the Seahorse

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