This book tells the story of the intertwined lives of George Washington Carver, Vice President Henry Agard Wallace, and Nobel Laureate Norman E. Borlaug. It tells how their kindness and passion to feed the world was passed on and enhanced across generations. In his quest to help feed the world, George Washington Carver was probably the most influential not because he was the "peanut man," but rather because he was a "gentle man." His protege Henry Agard Wallace grew up to be the Secretary of Agriculture and Vice President of the United States. He was likely one of the most under-appreciated and misunderstood leaders of the twentieth century. In turn, Wallace passed the baton to Norman Borlaug, who worked in quiet obscurity for most of his life. M.S. Swaminathan of India summed up his friend's life, "Norman Borlaug is the living embodiment of the human quest for a hunger free world. His life is his message."
The book is an account of cross generational change embellished with fictionalized conversations among historical figures. With regard to genre, it is non-traditional in its use of history and biography as vehicles for examining kindness as an attitude toward the world.
All of the characters who are identified by two or more names are historical figures. A few characters identified by a single name are fictional, primarily because the main players in the historical events being described are not known. The book uses the lives of three great men, (George Carver, Henry Wallace, Norman Borlaug) and the research of another, (Edward Lorenz) to tell the story of how kindness is passed and enhanced across generations by virtue of the "butterfly effect."
While The Seeds We Sow offers considerable detail about the lives of these men, it is not a series of biographies. Rather, it is the story of the impact they had on each other, and all of humanity, as they pursued the hybridization of the plants that feed us and the hybridization of the way we interact with each other and the environment. Because George Washington Carver, Henry Agard Wallace, and Norman Ernest Borlaug lived, so do we. This book tells that story.