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Salad Pie
Salad Pie

Salad Pie

By Wendy BooydeGraaff, Illustrated by Bryan Langdo



44 Pages, 8.05 x 10.35

Formats: Cloth

Cloth, $17.99 (US $17.99) (CA $23.99)

Publication Date: March 2016

ISBN 9780991386642

Rights: WOR

Ripple Grove Press (Mar 2016)

Price: $17.99


There is nothing sweeter than arriving at the playground, seeing it empty, and knowing you have it all to yourself—the silent comfort of playing alone. Maggie is overjoyed to have that solitude to make her Salad Pie. But then Herbert saunters over and wants to play too. He just wants to help even though Maggie makes it clear she won't let him. Then her imaginary pie takes a spill, and she realizes Herbert's intentions are not so bad after all.


Learning to share and play nicely with other children can be a challenge. In Salad Pie, Maggie finds the playground deserted when she arrives. This, she feels, is the perfect environment for making salad pie. She is not happy when Herbert shows up to help her. However, when her beautiful salad pie takes an unexpected tumble, Herbert is there to save the day, and Maggie realizes that salad pie is even better when shared. Colorful, energetic depictions of the children at play support and illustrate the story’s important lesson.  - Catherine Reed-Thureson - Foreword Reviews

Maggie believes the only way to make salad pie is in the park by herself. There should be no noise and, most importantly, no help. Herbert’s appearance makes her grumpy at first, but when she realizes she can’t scare him away, she reluctantly allows him to help add a garnish or two to her dandelion, crab apple, and clover salad. When Maggie falls off the slide performing her salad song-and-dance routine, Herbert is there to catch her and the salad. The qualities anyone would want in a friend are clearly visible in Herbert at that moment. The characters in this story are old enough to go to the park by themselves, and they appear to be of different racial backgrounds. Maggie might be considered a loner, but when Herbert impresses her with his imaginative culinary skills, she is willing to change her plans for the day and make a new friend. After reading this book, take a child outside and see what they can invent with the ingredients they find in the yard or on a walk. VERDICT A fine addition to collections in need of imaginative friendship tales. - Tanya Boudreau, Cold Lake Public Library, AB, Canada - School Library Journal

The park is the perfect place for culinary imagination—and friendship. Maggie's pleased that the park is empty and quiet, perfect for making Salad Pie. Then Herbert appears and asks what she's doing. The park's no longer empty or quiet. Still, she goes ahead with her plan. As Herbert watches, she walks in a wide arc around him, gathering stems of clover, dandelion leaves, some soft crab apples. She mixes them in her floppy hat, then tosses in some wood chips. A few fall out onto the ground, and Herbert scurries to pick them up. He tries to drop them back into the salad, and Maggie grabs his wrist to make sure he doesn't touch. But she accepts the pieces. "Magnificent," she declares, then climbs the slide, up up up and, at the very top, starts to sing and dance. When she loses her footing, she and her Salad Pie take a tumble, but Herbert is there to catch her and all the flying pieces. This time she lets him help. The missteps in BooydeGraaff's tale of budding friendship make it all the more interesting and believable. Langdo's watercolors bring character to the forefront; Maggie has light-brown skin and a wild mop of springy brown hair, while Herbert is a leggy white boy with short brown hair. Warm and winning.  - - Kirkus Review

"A fine addition to collections in need of imaginative friendship tales."  —School Library Journal

Author Biography

Wendy BooydeGraaff is an author who grew up making mud pies on a fruit farm in Ontario. She now enjoys whipping up all kinds of salads and pies. She lives in Kentwood, Michigan. Bryan Langdo is the illustrator of over thirty books for children, including Hero Mom, Mr. Tanner, and Patterns in Peru. He lives in Hopewell, New Jersey.