The Center for Children's Books


Graduate School of Library and Information Science
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign
Grandparents - May 2007

Selected and annotated by Katie Bruce


Amico, Tom. Raisin and Grape; by Tom Amico and James Proimos; illus. by Andy Snair. Dial, 2006. (32p.) Gr. 1-3
A young grape is visited by his wise, old grandfather raisin. The two spend a day at the park where the grandfather has many opportunities to share his insight with his grandson.

Bartek, Mary. Funerals & Fly Fishing. Holt, 2004. (148p.) Gr. 5-7.
Brad, who is incessantly teased by school bullies, is looking forward to summer vacation. His mother, however, decides to have him spend the summer with his estranged grandfather who runs a funeral parlor out of his home.

Bauer, Marion Dane. The Blue Ghost; illus. by Suling Wang. Random House, 2005. (85p.) Gr. 2-3
Liz goes with her grandmother to visit the cabin which has housed generations of her family. A visit from a blue ghost one night takes her back in time and teaches her about her ancestry.

Best, Cari. When Catherine the Great and I Were Eight!; illus. by Giselle Potter. Kroupa/Farrar, 2003. (32p.) Gr. 2-4
A series of mishaps occur before Sara, her Grandma Catherine and their neighbors arrive at the beach where Grandma Catherine teaches Sara to ‘float like a flower’ just like she had done long ago in Russia.

Birtha, Becky. Grandmama’s Pride; illus. by Colin Bootman. Whitman, 2005. (32p.) 5-8 yrs.
Six-year-old Sarah learns about the dignity of her grandmother when she goes south to visit her during the summer of 1956 and experiences segregation.

Bowen, Anne. When You Visit Grandma & Grandpa; illus. by Tomek Bogacki. Carolrhoda, 2004. (32p.) 3-6 yrs.
An older sister tutors her new baby brother in the rituals that come with a visit to grandma and grandpa’s house. She describes for him various traditions for all four seasons.

Boyden, Linda. The Blue Roses; illus. by Amy Cordova. Lee & Low, 2002. (32p.) Gr. 2-4.
At Rosalie’s birth, her grandfather planted a rose bush for her and he teaches her to care for it as she grows older.

Bridges, Shirin Yim. Ruby’s Wish; illus. by Sophie Blackall. Chronicle, 2002. (30p.) 5-8 yrs.
A story about the author’s real-life grandmother who grew up in China and longed to attend a university.

Busse, Sarah Martin. Banjo Granny; illus. by Barry Root. Houghton, 2006. (32p.) 4-7 yrs.
Granny sets out on a journey across the country to see her grandson, Owen. Along the way she overcomes many obstacles through her playing of bluegrass music.

Carter, Don. Heaven’s All-Star Jazz Band. Knopf, 2002. (34p.) 5-8 yrs.
Grandpa Jack loved jazz music so his grandson imagines heaven, where Grandpa Jack is now, to be a place where he can play to his heart’s content with all of the famous jazz music pioneers.

Cheng, Andrea. Shanghai Messenger; illus. by Ed Young. Lee & Low, 2005. (40p.) Gr. 3-6.
Xiao Mei heads off for her first visit to China, the land of her ancestors, and is instructed by her grandmother to see and remember everything so she can report back upon her return.

Christensen, Bonnie, ed. In My Grandmother’s House: Award-Winning Authors Tell Stories about Their Grandmothers. HarperCollins, 2003. (195p.) Gr. 6-10
A collection of twelve short stories by popular children’s book authors about memories of their grandmothers.

Clarke, Judith. Kalpana’s Dream. Front Street, 2005. (168p.) Gr. 7-10.
Neema struggles to write a school essay about ‘Who Am I?’ while her great-grandmother, Kalpana, comes to visit her from India.

Cole, Brock. Fair Monaco. Front Street, 2004. (32p.) 5-8 yrs.
Maggie, Kate and Nora must go to stay with their worrisome grandmother while their mother is ill. One night, the girls are transported into Granny’s worry-filled dreams and must over-power the ‘witchy’ bad dreams with good ones of their own.

Cooke, Trish. Full, Full, Full of Love; illus. by Paul Howard. Candlewick, 2003. (26p.) 4-7 yrs.
A tender portrait of a family Sunday dinner at Jay Jay’s grandmother’s house.

Cooney, Caroline B. Hit the Road. Delacorte, 2006. (176p.) Gr. 6-10.
Novice driver Brit ends up on an adventure when a stay with her grandmother turns into a road trip. Nannie and Brit rent a van, pick up Nannie’s old college friends and attend their college reunion.

Dickinson, Peter. Inside Grandad. Lamb, 2004. (128p.) Gr.5-7
Gavin’s grandfather has a stroke before he has a chance to complete a model of a boat he was making for his grandson.

English, Karen. The Baby on the Way; illus. by Sean Qualls. Farrar, 2005. (32p.) 4-7 yrs.
Jamal’s grandmother tells him the story of her birth – when she was the baby on the way.

Fenner, Carol. Snowed In with Grandmother Silk; illus. by Amanda Harvey. Dial, 2003. (80p.) Gr. 2-4.
A surprise snowstorm forces Ruddy to bond with his proper and up-tight grandmother.

Gritz, Ona. Tangerines and Tea: My Grandparents and Me; illus. by Yumi Heo. Abrams, 2005. (32p.) 3-6 yrs.
Alphabet verse describes a brother and sister’s visits to their grandparents’ farm during different seasons of a year.

Hicks, Barbara Jean. Jitterbug Jam; illus. by Alexis Deacon. Farrar, 2005. (32p.) 4-8 yrs.
Bobo is a monster who is frightened of a scary human boy lurking under his bed. His monster grandpa, Boo-Dad, is the only member of the family who understands and tells Bobo the secret of getting rid of the boy.

Hurst, Carol Otis. Terrible Storm; illus. by S. D. Schindler. Greenwillow, 2007. (32p.) 5-8 yrs.
The author’s two grandfathers, who have been friends since childhood, share their memories about the Great Blizzard of 1888.

James, Simon. The Birdwatchers. Candlewick, 2002. (26p.) 6-9 yrs.
Jess’s Granddad introduces her to the family tradition of bird watching and storytelling.

Juster, Norton. The Hello, Goodbye Window; illus. by Chris Raschka. di Capua/Hyperion, 2005. (32p.) 5-8 yrs.
Nanny and Poppa’s kitchen window is a source of entertainment and portal of adventure for the young protagonist of this story.

Kinsey-Warnock, Natalie. Nora’s Ark; illus. by Emily Arnold McCully. Harper-Collins, 2005. (32p.) 5-7 yrs.
A young girl and her grandmother go on a search, via rowboat, for her lost grandfather during the Vermont flood of 1927.

Marsden, Carolyn. Silk Umbrellas. Candlewick, 2004. (134p.) Gr. 4-7
Noi is learning to paint umbrellas like her grandmother who sell them to tourists in Thailand. When Noi’s sister is sent to work in a factory, Noi must commit to mastering the art before she too is sent to work there.

Martin, Jacqueline Briggs. The Water Gift and the Pig of the Pig; illus. by Linda S. Wingerter. Houghton, 2003. (32p.) 6-9 yrs.
Isabel’s grandfather is a retired sailor who has the water gift, the ability to find water underground. When his gift, along with his pet pig, goes missing, Isabel must rally his spirits and help bring them both back.

Mills, Claudia. Gus and Grandpa Go Fishing; illus. by Catherine Stock. Farrar, 2003. (48p.) Gr. 1-3.
Grandpa helps teach Gus the art of fishing during a family outing to the lake.

Newbery, Linda. Sisterland. Fickling, 2004. (370p.) Gr. 7-12.
Hilly learns more about her family history and past when Heidigran, her grandmother who is suffering from Alzheimer’s, comes to live with her and her family.

Rees, Douglas. Grandy Thaxter’s Helper; illus. by S.D. Schindler. Atheneum, 2004. (32p.) Gr. 2-4.
A folkloric tale of Grandy Thaxter who is too busy to go when Mister Death comes knocking on her door.

Rodowsky, Colby. That Fernhill Summer. Farrar, 2006. (169p.) Gr. 5-8.
Kiara and her parents receive news that her grandmother, Zenobia, whom Kiara had never met, is dying. The family gathers at her estate, Fernhill, for her last days but Zenobia miraculously recovers and Kiara volunteers to stay with her for the summer in hopes of learning about her family’s past.

Schotter, Roni. In the Piney Woods; illus. by Kimberly Bulcken Root. Kroupa/Farrar, 2003. (32p.) 5-7 yrs.
Ella’s grandfather shows her the secrets of fire-burst pinecones near their home by the piney woods in the year before his death.

Smith, Cynthia Leitich. Indian Shoes; illus. by Jim Madsen. HarperCollins, 2002. (66p.) Gr. 3-5.
Ray Halfmoon and his grandfather are a modern Native American family whose daily lives are integrated with their traditional Seminole-Cherokee culture.

Soto, Gary. My Little Car/ Mi Carrito; illus. by Pam Paparone. Putnam, 2006. (32p.) 4-7 yrs.
Teresa is thrilled when her grandfather sends her a lime green pedal car for her birthday, but she doesn’t keep up the care of her carrito and when her abuelo comes to visit, they must fix it up together.

Testa, Maria. Becoming Joe DiMaggio; illus. by Scott Hunt. Candlewick, 2002. (51p.) Gr. 6-9.
The story of the author’s father’s close relationship with his grandfather and their shared love for Joe DiMaggio is told through verse.

Wheeler, Lisa. Fitch & Chip: Who’s Afraid of Granny Wolf?; illus. by Frank Ansley. Jackson/Atheneum, 2004. (48p.) Gr. 1-2.
Fitch, a wolf, invites his good friend Chip, a pig, over to his grandmother’s house for dinner. Although Chip is loyal to his friend, he is concerned about what a wolf grandmother will serve for dinner.

Woodson, Jacqueline. Coming On Home Soon; illus. by E.B. Lewis. Putnam, 2004. (32p.) 5-8 yrs.
During World War II, Ada Ruth’s mama gets a job in Chicago and must leave Ada Ruth behind in the country with her grandmother. Grandma and Ada Ruth both miss mama terribly, but Grandma promises she will be coming on home soon.

Woodson, Jacqueline. Show Way; illus. by Hudson Talbott. Putnam, 2005. (48p.) 6-9 yrs.
The author describes seven generations of women in her family and the struggles they endured, from slavery to civil rights. Each woman contributes her time and skill to making a ‘Show Way’ quilt.

Zevin, Gabrielle. Elsewhere. Farrar, 2005. (275p.) Gr. 7-12.
Liz is sent to Elsewhere, or the afterlife, after she is hit by a car and her grandmother, who died before Liz was born, is there to show her the ropes.

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