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Comment: Ex-library hardcover book with mylar jacket, usual library marks; light reader wear
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Grandmother, Have the Angels Come? Hardcover – February 1, 2009

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 6 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 1
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (February 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316106631
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316106634
  • Product Dimensions: 10.2 x 0.4 x 10.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 15.5 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 5.0 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (2 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,361,789 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 1–2—A grandmother and her granddaughter share a dialogue about aging in which the woman answers the child's questions with reassurances about the physical changes that come with time. Kono's acrylic and pencil folk art evokes a rural Latin American setting and features monarch butterflies, smiling suns, and iconic swirling backgrounds. Vega's Hispanic characters are depicted in traditional dress and she manages to convey an acceptance of a stage in life that many Americans are loathe to embrace. The poetic give-and-take allows readers to think deeply about the topic. The granddaughter's query "have the angels come and darkened your eyes?" is answered with the graceful "Yes…. They have dimmed my vision so I may see more clearly." Vega belabors the point though. By the time grandmother's hair, ears, teeth, back, hands, legs, and feet have been addressed, readers will have aged too, and may miss the lovely last line. Lyrical and warm, this is an additional purchase for large multicultural and intergenerational collections.—Lisa Egly Lehmuller, St. Patrick's Catholic School, Charlotte, NC
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From Booklist

“Grandmother, Grandmother have the angels come and painted your hair?” “Yes, my darling granddaughter. / They have painted it white / so I may become more like the clouds.” So begins this beautifully illustrated picture book about a loving family relationship. With each question a young girl asks, her grandmother answers, lyrically reframing signs of aging, such as dimming sight, hearing, and bent fingers. Vibrant folk-art illustrations fill the pages and portray the brown-skinned characters in embroidered clothing and lush natural settings. Set in both the day and night, the fanciful scenes play out against swirling backgrounds and from whimsical perspectives. The story is somewhat lengthy, and some imagery may be a bit esoteric for younger children (“taste the sweetness of your Spirit”). Still, the story respects a child’s curiosity and concerns, and recasts aging with positive and poetic imagery and reassurances of eternal love. Grades K-2. --Shelle Rosenfeld

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Brimful Curiosities on April 6, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Using lyrical verses and symbolic imagery, author Denise Vega touches on the relationship between a grandmother and granddaughter and explores the mysteries of aging. Over and over the granddaughter asks her grandmother various aging questions, all starting with the lines, "Grandmother, Grandmother, have the angels come?" With amazing wisdom and love, the Grandmother answers the questions in a unique, reassuring way. Some of the five senses are covered in this book: sight, touch, taste, and hearing. This is one of the few children's books I've seen that portrays aging in a positive light. Even as the Aztec-styled sun sets, love, light and beauty reign. Erin Eitter Kono's illustrations in this new book are simply gorgeous, full imagery and swirling colors in radiant oranges, yellow and reds that remind me of Mexico.

Brilliant Monarch butterflies are a recurring symbol in the book and flutter over many of the pages. Interestingly enough, every year the Monarch butterfly migrates to the Michoacán forests in Mexico. This migration happens during the Dia de los Muertos (Day of the Dead) holiday. For the residents of this area, butterflies serve as a representation of departed loved ones souls. This book would be an appropriate fictional picture book read during the Day of the Dead holiday.

The book creatively depicts aging and does hint of death. Even though the title includes the word "angel" this is not a work of Christian fiction. Most children will not understand the deeper messages portrayed in the book without some explanation, so the book is not particularly scary or upsetting. My preschool daughter loved all the butterflies shown in the book as well as pictures of the sun with a face.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Margaret C. VINE VOICE on February 24, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Simply by looking at the cover, you know that this book has interesting artistry. Flipping through the pages, it is seen that the pictures pull imagination with reality in an absolutely beautiful fashion. The colors are vibrant and the images are very pleasing to the eye. I could easily imagine a child staring at these pictures for hours and imagine mine will too in the years to come. (Due in August, btw).

The story is a conversation between a granddaughter and her grandmother discussing the effects of aging as from the vision of a child. It is an incredibly creative way to explain the various effects of aging that are not normally explained to a child. On each page, the granddaughter asks the grandmother if the angels have come and done something such as covered her ears, and then the grandmother explains yes and why to prepare her.

Each page has a great rhythm and this is easily a good read-aloud book. I recommend it, and once you have read, I believe that you will too.
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