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Where Is Grandpa? Paperback – December 31, 2001

4.5 out of 5 stars 6 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Barron's (The Lost Years of Merlin) debut picture book, which the flap copy describes as autobiographical, offers a humanist response to death and grieving. On the day that Grandpa dies, a boy listens as his sister, brother and parents share memories of this generous, dynamic man. But he can't bring himself to join in, despite his own fond memories of spending time with Grandpa in the tree house Grandpa had built overlooking the Rockies. At last, the boy asks, "Can anybody tell me... Where is Grandpa now?" Fumbling for a definition of heaven, the father concludes, "Maybe you could say that heaven is any place where people who love each other have shared some time together." Kids may need some help fleshing out this concept, even as the child recalls the wonderful spots he and Grandpa had visited together. Thinking of his grandfather "in all of those places" frees the boy to return to them and, presumably, to carry on with a life that Grandpa has greatly enriched. Depicting stagily lit daytime scenes, electrically hued sunsets and starry nights, Soentpiet's (More Than Anything Else) watercolor tableaux amplify--and perhaps exaggerate--both the natural theater of the majestic mountain setting and the human drama of Barron's graceful story. A useful springboard for dialogue between bereaved adults and children. Ages 4-8. (Jan.)
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 2-A gentle story of a young boy's grief when his beloved grandfather dies. His family talks about their positive memories of him-adventures shared, a funny Halloween incident, and how easy he was to talk to. However, the narrator cannot verbalize his memories until his father answers such questions as "Where is Grandpa now?" or "Where is heaven?" Struggling with his own grief, his dad tries to answer as truthfully as he can. He explains that "-heaven is any place where people who love each other have shared some time together." The story is set against a backdrop of the majestic Rocky Mountains. At first, the watercolor paintings seem to glow with a very bright "liquid light" (a phrase of Grandpa's), but that brightness gradually softens to more soothing colors as the family contemplates the man's death. After Dad answers the child's questions, the colors lighten again, suggesting the coming resolution of their grief. A helpful introduction to death and the grieving process.
Virginia Golodetz, Children's Literature New England, Burlington, VT
Copyright 2000 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Puffin; Reprint edition (December 31, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0698119045
  • ISBN-13: 978-0698119048
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.1 x 11 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (6 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,179,400 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

By Paul Chance on July 24, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is a largely autobiographical story that is meant to help young people cope with the death of a loved one. (I don't think this point is made in the book, but it was made in a letter I had from the author.) The illustrations have a surreal quality, and remind me a little of Maxfield Parrish's work. When a boy's beloved grandfather dies, he reminisces about the things they did together, the places they went, about what Grandpa meant to him and the family. He struggles with his feelings and finally says, "Where is Grandpa now?" The answer is not very original, but is as good as anyone has ever offered, and it's an answer that may help other young (and maybe not so young) people deal with the death of someone they love. But this is a book that needs to be read to or with a boy or girl, and not merely handed to them to read on their own. Whether it will be of any value to youngsters who have not yet seen Death's work is questionable, but I think it would help those who have.
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By A Customer on November 8, 2000
Format: Hardcover
This is the touching story of a boy who has lost his grandfather. After the family finds out about the death of grandpa, they spend the remainder of the story sharing special memories of him. The boy asks, "Where is Grandpa?" and the father goes onto explain about heaven. I truly enjoyed this book. This would be a wonderful story for children and parents to share together. I am sure the special memories in the story would cause parents and children to remember special memories shared with their grandparents. The illusatrations are fantastic and they help to create the overall mood of the story.
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By A Customer on February 16, 2003
Format: Paperback
Where's Grandpa? touches the heart of anyone who has ever suffered the loss of a loved one or tried to explain loss to a child. The family remembers the wonderful times they have had with Grandpa but the child still wonders, "But where, exactly is he now?" The illustrations are wonderful and compliment the story. This book shows a sensitive way of dealing with bereavement.
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