A cumulative tale and a science lesson (cleverly camouflaged) come together with detailed illustrations to show the variety of life in a flower garden. Readers are told there is "a surprise in clever disguise" hanging in the garden. That clue will prompt a search through the scene on the page to locate the surprise. Other residents of the garden are introduced; ladybug, honeybee, hummingbird, inchworm, mantis, dragonfly, ants, grasshopper, and chickadee each appear and engage in their usual behavior. At last, the surprise unwraps itself to reveal... ah, that would be telling!
I will say that other creatures such as beetles, snails, and a chipmunk also move about the garden and many beautiful plants and flowers are shown. For a read-aloud in a one-on-one situation there could be plenty of time spent poring over all the tiny details worked into each spread. The back matter has a closeup of each of the characters in this tale and a description of their habits. Fittingly, the largest of these entries is saved for the "surprise." Whether you are looking for a gift for a budding young naturalist, adding to a classroom unit on gardens, or even looking for a mentor text to use in a lesson on compound words or verbs, this is a choice that will satisfy all those needs.