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When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons
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When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons

4.26  ·  Rating details ·  1,489 ratings  ·  407 reviews
december 29

and i woke to a morning
that was quiet and white
the first snow
(just like magic) came on tip toes

Flowers blooming in sheets of snow make way for happy frogs dancing in the rain. Summer swims move over for autumn sweaters until the snow comes back again. In Julie Fogliano's skilled hand and illustrated by Julie Morstad's charming pictures, the seasons come
Hardcover, 56 pages
Published March 1st 2016 by Roaring Brook Press
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Oct 09, 2015 rated it it was amazing
I don’t think I can adequately stress to you the degree to which I did not want to review this book. Not because it isn’t a magnificent title. And not because it isn’t pleasing to both eye and ear alike. No, it probably had more to do with the fact that it’s a work of poetry. I make a point of reviewing poetry regularly, though I’d be the first to say that it wasn’t my first language (if you know what I mean). I respect it but can occasionally find it tough going. I was determined to give this b ...more
Well, I have always loved poetry, and I have in particular always adored lyrical songs and verses about the seasons, about spring, summer, fall and in particular my favourite season, winter. And thus I was of course massively looking forward to finally getting a chance to read Julie Fogliano's award winning When Green Becomes Tomatoes: Poems for All Seasons. But unfortunately and yes, rather sadly and frustratingly, I really did not end up enjoying or even appreciating this collection of seasona ...more
May 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I told my librarian I wanted to keep this gem of a poetry book for myself. She didn't like that idea, so I guess I will have to make a trip to the book store;) ...more
Dec 04, 2016 rated it it was ok
Sheesh. This should be right up my alley. Nature poetry for children, pretty pictures, an author I've previously enjoyed. But no. The 'poems' are trite and instantly forgettable. The pictures are merely greeting card pretty. And the subject matter is very specific - I do not believe there are very many children who live where there are four seasons that fall exactly on the calendar dates (I know I never have lived in such a place, and certainly city children will be awfully lucky to have even ha ...more
Dave Schaafsma
Nov 04, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks, poetry
Each year I and my family read and rate all the Goodreads picture book nominees. This one is nominated for 2016. I make a few comments and then add their separate ratings and a comment. There's 15 and this is the fourth being rated. My rating might be somewhat influenced by the family, naturally.

From spring to spring, four seasons of poems. Long for a picture book, maybe so an upper el through tween book, though I think it is really all ages because the poetry is very good throughout, personal a
La Coccinelle
I picked up this little poetry book at a discount. It was in the children's section, but I really don't think it's a book for kids. It's more of a book for adults who want to reminisce about being kids.

Most of the poems don't rhyme, and rhyming is an expectation a lot of kids will have. (It's an expectation a lot of adults will have, too, when they pick up a poetry book aimed at children.) Some of the poems are quite lovely, don't get me wrong, but others come across as pretentious word-salad.

Jan 01, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: reviewed
Can't believe I'm giving four stars to a poetry book, but this is fantastic. Good-enough-for-both-a-Newbery-and-Caldecott fantastic. Really good stuff.

I think the reason I like it so much is the same thing holding it back from five stars: it's really slight. It's not telling a story (something for which I've found poetry to be a poor fit). Instead, this book highlights the passing seasons with unique, lovely phrasing.

I'm not sure who exactly is the audience for this book, by the way (besides for
This was not appealing to me at all. I found myself skimming the poems and not enjoying them. It seemed too drawn out and long. I enjoyed the illustrations though, which earns it the 2 stars. Monarch 2019 nominee.
Suzanne Jordan
Oct 09, 2016 rated it it was amazing
There are a lot of books out there on seasons. There are a lot of poetry books out there on seasons. When Green Becomes Tomatoes is my new favorite. Julie Fogliano captures the very essence of the seasons in each of her bite size poems...discovery, beauty, sadness, stillness, alone, together - all of the ways and feelings that come with living the cycle of nature. And Julie Morstad's illustrations make me want to jump in the book to experience it all. I love this book and will definitely recomme ...more
Mar 14, 2016 rated it liked it
Shelves: pbnf-800-poetry
I did like the poems very much, especially since there was one poem for my birthday! I liked the illustrations, and I thought that they went very well with the poems, but I did not think they were outstanding.
Carrie Gelson
Perfection in so many words - one word, one image at a time
Sep 19, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I drank this book in and discovered a new favorite line: "the strawberries are furious/and i think i just heard/even the roses sigh." Absolutely splendid. ...more
Aug 23, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Anyone Looking for Good Collections of Poetry for Young Children
Opening and closing on March 20th, at the beginning of spring and the end of winter, this collection of forty-nine poems - some short, some long - chronicles the beauties of the year, with sections devoted to each of the seasons. The same poem book-ends the collection on each end, and makes for a lovely introduction and conclusion: "from a snow covered tree / one bird singing / each tweet poking / a tiny hole / through the edge of winter / and landing carefully / balancing gently / on the tip of ...more
Heather Johnson
Aug 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Super cute! 🍅 🌲 🍁 ☔️ ☀️
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Lovely poetry for year round. Brain and heart food right here. 💜
Jan 27, 2016 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful book in terms of words and illustrations, each poem giving you just a taste of the day/season and the illustrations too, just touch on the event, mood. I sent the March one about mud to several friends with kids in college in New England because it is just perfect.....what's left is muddy mud. There is longing in these poems, for the season to come (in the fall there are thoughts of sweater) and appreciation for the time at present (love the swimming illustrations) and just a wonderf ...more
I'm glad that on a whim I picked this book off the "new" shelf at the library. It begins with Spring and then through the seasons until you come to Spring again. I think I need to own this book.


September 22
I still love you sunshine and swimming and sea
and strawberries, you know that i do
but i'm ready to move on
to something that's new
so now, i am waiting for sweaters

6/9/16 Read with Naomi
2016 - A book published in 2016

7/21/19 Read with Julia
2019 - A book with a verb in the title

I still tho
Laura Harrison
May 12, 2015 rated it it was amazing
My favorite new spring release. A perfect poetry diary complimented by illustrations by Julie Morstad. Ms. Morstad is one of today's most magnificent picture book illustrator's. Anyone working with children's literature, illustration and art or has kids-needs this book. It is the best of the best. ...more
Jennifer (JenIsNotaBookSnob)
It's a poetry book for kids. I liked that there was a variety of poems and that they weren't all rhyming poems. We skipped a few as I didn't want her to lose interest and wanted to end on a high note with it. ...more
Nov 30, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I'm not sure I can pick a favorite poem from this collection, they're all that good. ...more
Jul 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poems
Related to many of these poems of the seasons. Beginning and ending come back together again.
Move through the seasons in this book of superb poetry. Each season is captured in small moments. Spring is shown in a bird singing on a branch, a crocus in snow, gray skies, rain, and red rubber boots. It turns to summer with poems that show that transition. Summer then is swimming, grass, fireflies, tomatoes, stars, and blueberries. Fall glides in with promises of sweaters, leaves and pumpkins. A bare time leads to snow in winter, snuggling at the fireside, and again a bird on a branch singing ...more
Phil Jensen
Apr 30, 2016 rated it liked it
Modestly successful poetry recommended for grades 3 and up. The poems that jumped out at me the most were fall ones about leaves, which had a fun rhythm to them. The rest of the book was competent but not distinguished. The beautiful illustrations are playful and evocative- much more so than the poems.

A slightly jarring aspect of the book was the mysterious geography. The poems seem intended to be universal, but region-specific details keep popping up. For example, Cincinnati has forests and sea
Jun 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: non-fiction
Content Area: Science
When Green Becomes Tomatoes is a delightful, poetic form of educating children about the 4 seasons that we experience yearly. The twin text I have chosen to pair with it is A Friend For All Seasons, which is a story about a raccoon named Robbie who lives in an Oak Tree which he calls “Old Father Oak” whom he is very fond of. He grows concerned as Old Father Oak begins to change, but his mother is sure to ease his mind by telling him about how the tree changes according to th
Kadidja May
Dec 10, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I got this as a (suprising) gift, maybe because I love illustrations, or maybe because I love plants and everything earthy, but most definitely because I love beautiful books.

Though the poems are primariliy meant for children, I find they work for all ages, especially in combination with those lovely illustrations – and they include diverse children, yay! Illustrator Julie Morstad used gouache and pencil crayon, which work wonderfully with all the white space she allowed. The poems breathe and i
I decided to read this book after hearing it praised on Heavy Medal, the School Library Journal blog that discusses the Newbery Medal and its contenders. I wanted to see if I felt the same as the others who had praised the book. I am very happy to say that I do feel the same way. The book is gorgeous both in language and art. I've rarely seen a book that fits together so beautifully. The poems start with spring, travel through summer and fall, take the reader through winter and back to spring. T ...more
Justina Wemhoff
When Green Becomes Tomatoes by Julie Morstad

Fiction Twin Text: Scott, M. (2016). Corduroy’s Seasons. New York, NY: Penguin Random House.

The possible content-area crossover is most likely science, but it could also be incorporated into language or literature because it is written in poems. At first, I picked this book because I thought that it was about how plants grow, a major core concept in elementary school science. However, I quickly realized as I was reading it that it was a unique teaching
Apr 04, 2016 rated it it was amazing

Mother Nature and the calendar may have designated the vernal equinox as March 20, 2016 in the northern hemisphere but the first day of April heralds an event in the literary world which cements this annual change. National Poetry Month is celebrating its twentieth anniversary this year with a host of activities available for participants on their website. There is no better time to collect words expressing the shift in seasons than the renewal of life after a winter's rest.

As the days move forw
Dec 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
We have to welcome this collection of poems which with few means- words , colors, imagination and talent gives to everyone young at heart moments of delightful joy. Attributing human features to things that define the four seasons, Julie shows that the power of imagination can make many ordinary things without any appeal for our senses look like funny people who have no other intentions than to make us laugh (the dull month of October has a cold, strawberries are furious, and the snow comes on t ...more
Nov 07, 2016 rated it really liked it
A beautiful book with great pictures told through the eyes of a child and how they see the changing of the seasons.

march 22

just like a tiny, blue hello
a crocus blooming
in the snow

may 20

"enough already"
i whispered
to the clouds
(just loud enough
for the sun to overhear
but not enough to wake the rain)
"the strawberries are furious
and i think i just heard
even the roses sigh"

june 15

you can taste the sunshine
and the buzzing
and the breeze
while eating berries off the bush
on berry hands
and berry knees

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Julie Fogliano has spent her entire life reading children's books. She lives in the Hudson Valley with her husband and three children. ...more

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