By Bob Arnold
A Wesson mom's literary gift to her nine-year-old daughter -- a story about growing up -- is delighting many others beyond town today as a recently-published book.
Brookhaven-based Epiphany Publishing House is now distributing Truly Too Green, a birthday book Kris Sullivan presented to her daughter Mary Grace, a May 2022 graduate of Wesson Attendance Center (WAC), when she was nine-years-old.
The Sullivan book is a modern-day fable which plows up issues of rejection, resilience and acceptance with whimsical color illustrations by children.
Truly Too Green is a sunflower who becomes whom God created her to be after living through stages as a sweet small seed and an all-green seedling, and recognizing her true self and ongoing growth through interactions with the surrounding world -- other flowers, insects, the sun, reflections in a pond. She enters the world with a fresh outlook, is rejected by peers and uncovers a hidden reservoir of resilience.
From another sunflower, she learns "every flower needs time to grow into who God created her to be. You have just seen your true self for the first time, but that's who you really were all along" and comes to understand "who I am is who I have always been, but never really knew myself until now; I expect there are many other new things for me to know, too."
In its conclusion, the book asks readers to cull from its narrative to answer questions about growing up and relationships.
The author is a sixth-grade language arts teacher at WAC with a Master's degree in School Counseling and a journalism background. She and her husband Ken Sullivan have two daughters and Dumps, a barbeque restaurant in Wesson. Sullivan enjoys travel, Bible study, bass fishing, sipping hot coffee and the outdoors.
Three sixth graders at WAC contributed the colorful art featured in Truly Too Green: Carley Clayton Smith, Anye' L. Tanner and Blayten Wayne Windom. Jimmie Cain, a visual designer who works at Co-Lin, assisted in design of the book.
To order the book, visit https://www.target.com/p/truly-too-green-by-kris-sullivan-hardcover/-/A-86662114.