Wednesday, April 12, 2006

Review in the Ohioana Quarterly, Spring 2006, p. 93

40 Uses for a Grandpa, by Harriet Ziefert, illustrated by Amanda Haley
41 Uses for a Grandma, by Harriet Ziefert, illustrated by Amanda Haley

Harriet Ziefert and Amanda Haley keep us laughing with their delightful portrayals of the roles played by Grandmas and Grandpas in our lives. Bright, action-filled illustrations accompany each word or phrase.

Grandpa the "Veterinarian" eases a spoonful of medecine towards a skeptical-looking turtle while Grandson looks on. Later, as the "Shelf," Grandpa snoozes peacefully as Grandchild tries to balance a drinking glass on Grandpa's stomach. The reader can almost see the stomach rising and falling with each breath and has to wonder, "What is in the glass?"

Grandma the "Monkey Bars" stands stoically as gleeful grandchildren swing from her outstretchd arms. Her arms are about as thick as the metal bars at the playground, but the reader knows Grandma's willpower makes it work! As the family "Vacation Destination," Grandma smiles joyfully as a family with six children, including a howling baby, arrives on her doorstep.

Ziefert and Haley capture the deep emotion along with the humor. We see grandparents in the roles of "Nurse," "Security Blanket," "Friend," and "Someone to love you when others do not."

These two delightful picture books capture the heart and soul of grandparents. Fun for all. Great gifts.

-Wendy Boortz


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