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Grandfather Gandhi Hardcover – March 11, 2014


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 600L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; First Edition edition (March 11, 2014)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 144242365X
  • ISBN-13: 978-1442423657
  • Product Dimensions: 10.5 x 0.5 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.3 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (18 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #19,337 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Gr 1–3—Mahatma Gandhi, as seen through the eyes of one his grandsons, is depicted in this picture-book biography as a loving grandfather and a revered figure. Twelve-year-old Arun and his family have come to live in his bapu's "service village," which is a great honor, but is also hard for young Arun, who must share his grandfather with so many others demanding his time and attention. The boy frets over the difficulty of living up to the expectations that carrying the name Gandhi entails, and when a disagreement during a soccer game sparks his anger, Arun seeks out his wise and loving grandfather for comfort and advice. This is less a biography of a famous leader and more of an ode to a great man by an adoring grandson. While background details are left intentionally vague, i.e., the family's reasons for moving to India, memories of Gandhi himself are sharp and specific, lending an air of intimacy. The accompanying artwork is stunning, the use of mixed media collage is effective and beautiful, with varying perspectives and intriguing materials on display on every page. With so many biographies about Gandhi published recently, this one stands out for its unique point of view and gorgeous art, and makes a fine supplement to any collection.—Jody Kopple, Shady Hill School, Cambridge, MA

From Booklist

Twelve-year-old Arun Gandhi travels with his family from their home in South Africa to India to be with their grandfather, the Mahatma, in his service village of Sevagram, where they stay for two years. Arun loves his grandfather but resents all of the others who monopolize his time, and he worries about living up to his supreme example. He is a child, and like a child, he erupts in anger, seethes in frustration, and longs for connection. And his grandfather is there to tell him that anger is human and we must work to use it so it cannot use us. Collaborating with first-time picture-book author Hegedus, Arun Gandhi recalls his own childhood experiences, relating the stories in an immediate first-person voice. Working in mixed media, with pieces of fabric clothing and hand-cut, hand-painted figures, Turk mixes carefully detailed renderings with abstracted expressions of emotional struggle, achieving a powerful balance. A personal portrait of a legendary figure. Grades 1-4. --Thom Barthelmess

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Customer Reviews

4.9 out of 5 stars
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He incorporates the fibers Gandhi knew so well and turns them into an essential aspect of the book’s art.
E. R. Bird
I have been looking forward to this book ever since I heard it was about to be released and it has far exceeded my expectations.
Peggy E. Pate-Smith
The illustrations completely illuminate the story and are such beautiful works of art, they should be framed!
judith turk

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

9 of 9 people found the following review helpful By Peggy E. Pate-Smith on March 16, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you know someone that struggles with an anger issue, or if you are wondering how to respond without judgement to another person, or if you are just looking for an amazing book to read or give as a gift, Grandfather Gandi by Arun Gandhi and Bethany Hegedus is a new book you should definitely find.

I have been looking forward to this book ever since I heard it was about to be released and it has far exceeded my expectations. I knew that Arun, the grandson of Mahatma Ghandi would enchant me with a good story, but I was thrilled to see that every detail about the book is beautiful. The illustrations by Evan Turk combine watercolor, paper collage, cotton fabric, cotton, yarn, gouache, pencil, tea, and ten foil. They are exquisite. The illustrations are matched with words that provide beautiful imagery such as this statement, “The tin bowls and utensils we used clanged, making a funny-sounding music.” The main focus of the book, which is about Arun feeling inadequate to live up to his grandfather’s reputation, shares a story about Arun becoming angry on the soccer field and then being overwhelmed with embarrassment as he tells his truth to his grandfather. His grandfather responds by telling him that anger is like electricity, it can strike like lightening and split a tree in half, or it can be channeled, transformed and like a lamp, switched on to shed light in the world.

I’m so thankful Arun was willing to share his story. In a time when anger and self judgement threatens our world, this story is a blessing of healing. The publisher, Simon and Schuster did an incredible job bringing this book together. Whether you are a librarian, teacher, grandparent, parent, or the best aunt ever, I think you are going to want to get this book to share with those special kids (or adults) in your life.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on April 5, 2014
Format: Hardcover
Are you familiar with the concept of booktalking? It’s a technique librarians developed to get people interested in books they might otherwise not pick up. The whole concept is to develop a kind of movie trailer style talk that gives a sense of the book’s allure without giving up the plot. Typically booktalking is done for middle grade and young adult works of fiction, but enterprising souls have had a lot of luck with nonfiction as well. Now with an increased interest in nonfiction in our schools it’s more important than ever to make the books we hawk sound particularly good. It doesn’t hurt matters any when the books actually ARE good, though. Now let’s say I’m standing in front of a room of second and third graders with a copy of “Grandfather Gandhi” in my hands. How do I sell this book to them? Easy peasy. Some books practically booktalk themselves. Here’s how you sell it:

“Have any of you ever heard of Einstein? Yes? He’s the guy that was a total genius. Now imagine you’re his grandkid and you’re not that smart. Okay now, have any of you heard of the Beatles. Yes? Well imagine you’re one of THEIR grandkids . . . and you’re bad at music. Now here’s the big one. Has anyone heard of Gandhi? He was a great guy. He managed to free his country and stop a lot of oppression and he did it without any violence at all. Martin Luther King Jr. got some of his ideas from Gandhi about nonviolence. All right, well, now let’s image you are Gandhi, the most peaceful man IN THE WORLD’s grandson. What if you get mad? Can you imagine what it would be like to have everyone whispering every time you got a little steamed about something?”

So there you go. Quick. Simple. To the point.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Catherine Davis Pezdirtz on May 5, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Evan Turk's wonderful illustrations bring this story alive for children of all ages. What makes this lesson in nonviolence so valuable is that it is a true story, told to Bethany Hegedus by Arun Gandhi, the grandson of Mahatma Gandhi, from memories of the two years he spent living on his grandfather's compound, beginning at age 12. Hegedus, who was moved by hearing Arun Gandhi speak shortly after 9/11, catches his gentle spirit in the retelling.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Z Hayes HALL OF FAMETOP 50 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on April 30, 2014
Format: Hardcover
"Grandfather Gandhi" is a heartwarming story that conveys the perennial message of peace, be it within or without. Set in Sevagram, Mahatma Gandhi's compound in India, the story narrates young Arun's (Gandhi's grandson) visit to his grandfather. Arun is at first resentful that he has to "share" his grandfather with Gandhi's followers, but over time, during the course of his visit, he gets precious moments with Gandhi, moments that turn out to be opportunities to learn valuable life lessons.

However, Arun's inner turmoil gets worse. He feels he is no good: he struggles to learn his native Gujarati, he loses patience easily, and is quick to anger. An altercation with another boy on the soccer field pushes Arun to contemplate violence, but luckily Grandfather Gandhi is there to help Arun find his way out of turmoil and into peace.

This beautifully-written book with unique illustrations makes Gandhi's life-affirming philosophy of peace accessible to young readers. Highly recommended.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Jennifer Forgash on March 11, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
It's a great book, well written, with gorgeous pictures but what moved me most about it is Bethany Hegedus' story of how it came to be. Seeking solace after 9/11 she went to hear Arun Gandhi speak. His speech moved her so much she got it in her head that she would write a book with him. She was not even a published author at the time she approached him. What a crazy and amazing idea. And more crazy and amazing is that he didn't brush her off... he said "yes." It took 12 years to get the project to this point... but how awesome and amazing that it even happened.
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