In the faraway land of Babylon we step into the lives of a simple family who trade in plants. Zahara’s Rose is the story of a little girl who travels to the royal Hanging Gardens with her mother and grandmother to sell their wares bringing with them an ordinary little plant that her father insists is a flower from heaven. Upon arrival after a bumpy cart ride Zahara is not permitted to enter due to her disability, she has a cane to walk. Will Zahara be able to see the wondrous hidden garden or give the queen her rose which has shown its splendid beauty?
An appealing story which touches the heart, Libby Hathorn’s Zahara’s Rose is sweet and real and awakens you to a different kind of life where things are simpler but social issues are the same. The three generations of women travelling together is a nice touch for me, and the incorporation of physical prejudices makes it a good book for children who experience them as well as others who are learning about accepting diversity in all forms. Has a happy ending thanks to her Grandmother being a bit swift and cheeky.
With descriptive scenes and visually suited illustrations by Doris Unger, the desert environment of Babylon and the hanging gardens of Zahara’s Rose become a trip to another land.
A Bug in a Book Review