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The Night Flower

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  97 ratings  ·  21 reviews
An exquisitely illustrated nonfiction picture book about a desert flower that blooms for just one night a year

As the summer sun sets over the Sonoran desert in Arizona, wildlife gathers to witness a very special annual event. The night flower is about to bloom. For a few short hours, the desert is transformed into a riot of color and sound as mammals and insects congregate
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 12th 2019 by Big Picture Press
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4.18  · 
Rating details
 ·  97 ratings  ·  21 reviews

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Laura Harrison
Feb 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Big Picture Press publishes some of the most beautiful and informative picture books I have ever seen. How I wish science/nature/educational children's books looked like this when I was a child. This book focuses on The Night Flower. In glorious and illustrated detail. A must have for a personal, school or public library. Absolutely enchanting!
I first saw a marvelous saguaro cactus on a trip with students. They are amazing to stand near. In poetry, Lara Hawthorne tells a story of the desert with one culminating moment of the saguaro's bloom, happening only once a year! In lovely realistic drawings, she shows a journey through a day as animals begin to gather for the bloom opening. This gorgeous book also has a timeline of the saguaro's growth. For example, it's only one inch tall at ten years old and buds appear at around 35 years old ...more
Sarah N
Each page bursts with color and desert creatures to spot! The rhyming text has an excellent rhythm and is well paced.
We spend a lot of days waiting in anticipation. It's safe to say those events we long for alter with age but some of them remain forever. We wait for the first day of school and the last day of school. We thrill at the first brilliant bursts of yellow, orange and red leaves in the autumn and the first snowfall that coats everything like white frosting. After a long, chilly, windy winter we look for the first daffodil and tulip leaves to push through the ground. We cheer at the first sighting of ...more
Jul 28, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In the Sonoran Desert, a unique ecosystem that covers large parts in the southwestern states in the USA and northwestern Mexico, there grows a magnificent plant: the saguaro [sa-wah-ro] cactus.

A tree-like cactus species, the saguaro is special because it blooms only once a year. For a single night.

Told in verses, rich in detailed watercolour illustrations, Lara Hawthorne's nonfiction book depicts the beauty of this flower, the beauty of this distinctive ecosystem and the symbiosis between the an
Mrs.Melaugh Melaugh
Mar 29, 2019 rated it really liked it
In rhyming text of four lines per double page spread, young readers are introduced to the saguaro cactus, its desert biome, and neighboring flora and fauna. Those who may have thought of the desert as sparsely populated may be surprised to find vistas teeming with life. The saguaro cactus can live for hundreds of years, but in one of those “stranger than fiction” facts, it only blooms one night a year, attracting many desert denizens at that time. A striking two-page centerfold of a single enorm ...more
Jun 11, 2019 rated it really liked it
I absolutely loved the cover, the end papers, and the illustrations throughout. It is beautiful to look at. I really appreciated the dissection of the saguaro, the descriptions of the animals, and the glossary at the end. This would be a good read-aloud with 5-8 y/o. What kept it from being a 5 star review for me is that even though the text flows nicely, it seems a little immature for the illustrations. The illustrations definitely outshine the text in this book.
Jun 01, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: books-for-kids
Did you know that the saguaro cactus flower blooms for only one night every year? Have you ever seen a rainbow grasshopper? The text of this book was not particularly compelling (I think that books should only be written in rhyme if it's done really, really well), but the book was educational and the illustrations were some of the most beautiful I've ever seen. (Seriously, I'm considering buying some art prints from Lara Hawthorne!)
Apr 04, 2019 rated it really liked it
This is truly a beautiful book about a type of cactus which blooms only once a year. The factual content is interesting and the illustrations are lovely. Young children will find it fascinating this flower only comes once a year; I can hear plenty of "whys" coming while reading this to or with young children.
Karina Blackburn
Mar 25, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Beautiful illustrations, rhyming words, AND I learned a lot more about saguaros than I knew previously. I'm a sucker for a children's book with a glossary, and there's also infographics about the life cycle of a saguaro and the different parts of the plant. Love it!
May 26, 2019 rated it it was amazing
A beautiful and informative book about the saguaro cactus. The majority of the book is told in rhyming text, filled with information about the importance of the saguaro blooms. Kids will enjoy spotting all of the various animals in the illustrations.
May 02, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Beautiful pictures and not overly text-heavy. My favorites were the little bats! I love the charts at the end of the book as well.
This was a beautifully done picture book, nonfiction about the desert biome and the saguaro flower. Lots of information in the end notes and cute rhyming text throughout.
Aug 29, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
I like this book because it was about a night flower that only grows once a year... or day?
Apr 14, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A stunningly illustrated children’s book about the Saguaro cactus complete with glossary and information about animals in this habitat.
Edward Sullivan
Jul 03, 2019 rated it really liked it
A beautifully illustrated introduction to the saguaro cactus, native to the Sonoran desert, with a flowers that bloom just once a year.
Lesley Burnap
Sep 14, 2019 rated it really liked it
The precious once-a-year night bloom of the saguaro cactus. Told in rhyme.
Aug 12, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Pretty and unique. And look! I learned something!
Mar 30, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
gorgeous illustrations (and great endpapers!)
Favorite publisher--great paper. Beautiful, crisp art. Excellent back matter includes info about animals and terminology used in the book. Good use of vocabulary, especially "ensue"
All about the amazing saguaro cactus in the Sonoran desert that blooms once a year for a single night. Stunning watercolors.
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Fresh new talent Lara Hawthorne graduated from Falmouth University in 2013. Her first picture book, Herb, was published in 2014. She is also the illustrator of Carol Ann Duffy’s The King of Christmas. Inspired by nature, myths, and legends, Lara Hawthorne creates wonderful small worlds with her distinct watercolor style. She lives in Bristol, England.