My little grandmother often forgets
by ; illustrated by Brown, Kathryn
Candlewick Press, 2007
What People Are Saying
From Our Follett Early Learning Experts
A young boy talks about the various things his grandmother forgets and decides as long as his family is there to help her it is okay.
Booklist (April 15, 2007 (Vol. 103, No. 16))
In naturally flowing, rhyming verses, a little boy introduces his grandmother and her peculiarities. She loses everything from her glasses to her shoes to her cat (though children will enjoy spotting the lost things in the illustrations). Once she went to the store and forgot the way home. Her grandson discusses the situation in a matter-of-fact, childlike way. After Grandmother makes him tea with cinnamon toast, he checks the stove. When she repeats the question, "Is it time for my bus?"he answers, "I'm here now. It's just time for us."Brown's ink drawings, washed in watercolors are well matched with the simple, graceful text. Together, they depict a bond between grandmother and grandson that is evident but not overly sweet. Many parents will be glad to find such a reassuring picture book that realistically acknowledges children's experiences with memory disorders in the elderly and encourages a loving response. Pair with the similarly named Little Mama Forgets (2006) by Robin Cruise.
Horn Book (Fall 2007)
In this poignant rhyming story, Tom's grandmother becomes so forgetful and disoriented that she has to move in with his family. Lindbergh mitigates the sadness of the situation by focusing on Tom's warm relationship with his grandmother: "But she says she's found ME, / so she thinks she will stay." Soft (but not sappy) watercolor and ink illustrations depict the loving family.
Kirkus Reviews starred (March 1, 2007)
An enchantingly cozy world of window seats, trellises and rose-patterned curtains is Tom's little grandmother's physical world, and her home's familiar surroundings help comfort her deteriorating brain. Soft watercolors and ink create an ordered loveliness, which complement the equally gentle rhyming couplets. Her mental condition worsens, so on the last pages, she is living with her son's family, no longer able to live at home: "My little grandmother lives with me now. She doesn't know why and she doesn't know how. She can't find her cat, and she loses her way"--yet she feels safe, because she has Tom, who looks like Roy, her beloved son when he was a boy, "so she thinks she will stay." Tom describes his relationship with her in simple descriptive words, evocative of grandmother's confusion and deepening loss. Though he's as tall as a grocery-store shopping cart, she isn't much taller and his confident presence makes all the difference. This is a truly brilliant treatment of memory loss, in which grandmother's connection with her life is found again and again in little flashes because of her favorite things being close at hand: blue-china teacup, big orange cat and Tom. Worlds of understanding flow from Lindbergh, whose long experience with her own mother's slow demise enlightens each page with tender reality. (Picture book. 3-5)
Library Media Connection (October 2007)
Young Tom discovers that even though his grandmother sometimes gets confused or lost she is still his grandmother and he loves her just the same. Told in rhyme through Tom's eyes, this story tells of how a loving and supportive family welcomes an aging grandmother into their home, and learns to accept and appreciate her as she enters a new phase of life. Grandmother gets lost on the way to the grocery store, loses her glasses and shoes, and often forgets who people are. This story has a gentleness and sweetness to it that seems to balance the negative effects associated with Alzheimer's disease. While it may be obvious to adults reading this story that Grandmother is living with Alzheimer's disease, children may simply identify with the fact that she is forgetful. The light-hearted pastel illustrations add to the fun of the story. Grandmother is shown as a fashionable woman with a silly hairdo. This book could be used to discuss family relationships or how we should be accepting of other people's differences. Recommended. Deana Groves, Education Catalog Librarian, Western Kentucky University Libraries, Bowling Green, Kentucky
Publishers Weekly (May 21, 2007)
Lindbergh (My Hippie Grandmother) writes in the voice of a youngster endearingly devoted to his grandmother, who suffers from memory loss. The title page shows the lad and his parents arriving at the home of the diminutive woman, who sports an eccentric hairstyle, snazzy earrings, jeans and striped socks. The child observes that his grandmother can't find her belongings, including her cat (perched atop the chair she's sitting in) and her glasses (tucked into her hair). The boy stays close to his grandmother, watching her take burnt cookies from the oven and waiting patiently as she ponders a purchase, explaining that on an earlier visit "She got to the store/ but forgot the way back./ Now she takes me along,/ and I help her keep track." In an especially affecting scene, the understanding grandson gently corrects her when she calls him by his father's name: "So I say, `I'm not Roy,'/ and she answers, `You're not?'/ Then I tell her, `I'm Tom./ That's okay. You forgot.'" In the story's heartwarming ending, Tom reveals that his grandmother now lives with him and "She can't find her cat,/ and she loses her way..../ But she says she's found me,/ so she thinks she will stay." Brown's (Tough Boris) wispy, pastel-toned watercolor and ink illustrations poignantly underscore the bond between the narrator and his grandmother. This will easily provide a springboard for adult-child dialogue and will reassure children faced with similar family situations that they can be of help. Ages 4-6. (Apr.) Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal (May 1, 2007)
PreS-Tom's grandmother has begun to forget some pretty important things, such as whether the stove is turned off and how to get home from the grocery store. The boy and his family don't outwardly find these changes to be sad or scary; they're sometimes funny, but mostly they are just what life is like with Grandma. Tom is pleased that he can help his "little grandmother" by accompanying her to the store or finding her lost cat. Both Tom and Grandma are delighted that they live together now so they can have tea parties and sit together on the porch swing. Lindbergh's rhyming text doesn't poke fun or take itself too seriously, and Brown's lively pen-and-watercolor illustrations of a lovely, carefree woman and her freckled little grandson align perfectly with the book's message: that sometimes Grandma needs extra help, and Tom's the (five-year-old) man for the job. This charming tale will enchant all children, not just those with grandparents in similar situations.-Daisy Porter, San Jose Public Library, CA Copyright 2007 Reed Business Information.
- Publisher: Candlewick Press
- Pub. Date: March 13, 2007
Format: Hardcover (FollettBound) 22 p. : col. ill. ; 26 cm.
- Age Range: PreK - Grade 1 (4-6 yrs.)
- Reading Level: 2.1 (What’s this?)
- ISBN-10: 0-7636-1989-2
- ISBN-13: 978-0-7636-1989-3
- Follett Number: 24009U7
- Manufacturer Part Number: 0763619892
- Language: English