Children’s Book Review: Garlic-Onion-Beet-Spinach-Mango-Carrot-Grapefruit Juice

September 1st, 2010 - filed under: Furthermore » Reviews


Whew, try saying that name three times fast! It may be a tongue twister of a title, but this sweet story is nothing but a pleasure to read. My copy was sent to me direct from the author, Nathalie VanBalen (thanks Nathalie!), who produced and published it all on her own. Mad respect!

The book itself is totally unique, a dynamic artistic mix of photography, collage, and sketch. Our narrator is a finger (yes, a finger), our protagonists are plush dolls, and there’s some really cute illustrated snails. And on top of amazing art it packs a powerful pro-veg message.

From a press package:

This new, innovative children’s book . . . raises questions about who we eat and how it feels to be food. When two enthusiastic Vikings decide to use snail shells as a nutritious supplement in juice, their mindful friend Thora challenges the Vikings to think about the effects of their actions.


This book is recommended for children ages 6 and up, and was probably a bit advanced for wee Waits Rebhal. Still, he sure did love chewing on it! I’ve read it to him a number of times, and unlike lots of other kids books, I appreciate this one because it keeps me interested as well. The multi-media design is clever and creative and keeps my grown-up mind engaged, which is so nice.

Waits even took a turn trying to read it!


Garlic-Onion-Beet-Spinach-Mango-Carrot-Grapefruit Juice is a thoughtful book with an important message, but it certainly doesn’t take itself too seriously. Super sweet, often silly, and with a simple lesson in compassion that subtly encapsulates the veg*n ethos.

Seriously, I’m kind of in love with this book. I highly, *highly* recommend it -no matter your dietary preference! It would really make a great gift for any little ones in your life. So support an independent artist and check out Thora Thinks. If you don’t, Waits will give you frowny face:



  • Squiggle

    Awww…Waits looks so serious in that last picture! It’s not a very eloquent input I know but it’s all my poor sleep deprived brain can manage at the moment (35 hours no sleep and counting…damn you insomnia!). I’ll try for something more thoughtful later.
    B x

  • Rea

    I am not even kidding when I saw that Waits is possibly the cutest baby I’ve ever seen. Sooo adorable! Hooray for pro-veg children’s literature!

  • HeatherG

    Those pics of Waits are to.die.for. *swoon*

  • Nathalie

    I can’t imagine a better book model. I hope it was delicious!

  • Melissa

    your little monkey is so cute and a perfect poser!!!

  • Kim

    I agree with the Waits being the cutest baby ever comment. I’ve never seen such a wide-eyed, engaged baby!

  • Minna

    I LOVE HIM!!!

  • Kelly H.

    Ditto above! Awesome photos!
    And that book looks FABULOUS! Well done Nathalie!!

  • Allison

    I cannot believe how adorable your wee one is! I can only hope that my future children are even half as cute as he is! As for that book, it sounds so awesome. I may look into it even though I am a number of years away from having children. Who doesn’t like kids books?

  • sarah

    Ahhhhhhh!!!! He’s so CUTE!!!!

  • Sayward

    Thanks everyone! But don’t let that little flirt distract from the point of the post. It’s a really good book! =D

  • Kate

    OH MY FREAKING GOD YOUR CHILD. Holy cow he is cute. Yes, you wrote words, but they got in the way of the pictures. I didn’t read them. I’ll re-read this post, but really…it could have been a picture book of Waits eating a book and it’d be like the 3rd best blog post you’ve ever written.

    ….ok, read it. Seriously, this blog needs more Waits. Or Waits’ blog needs more Waits. Or both.

  • Kelly H.

    Say…Did you know that Nathalie will be at the Portland VegFest?? I was going to order a book, but I think I’ll just have to buy direct in Portland instead. :o)

  • Sayward

    @ Kelly H. – Yes! She emailed me to let me know and I’m so excited to meet her! And, SO EXCITED FOR VEGFEST!!! =D

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