“When a Grandpa says ‘I love you,’ / he doesn’t always say it / in the regular way. / That would be just a little too…regular.”
Wood and Bell’s follow-up to When a Dad Says “I Love You” (2013) features anthropomorphic grandpa-kid pairs of animals demonstrating all the various unregular ways grandpas can say “I love you.” They might try to teach you to wink, though it usually only results in a blink. They might repeatedly teach you to tie your shoes. He might say it “by buying you / a double-scoop ice-cream cone / on a hot summer day. / And then by helping you eat it / if it melts too fast.” He might teach you to throw a special pitch or pretend to love your tea at a tea party. He might teach you to play old-fashioned games like checkers or try to learn a newfangled game on the computer. “But most of all, a grandpa says / ‘I love you’ just by being… // Your grandpa!” This appealing—but free of saccharine—exploration of that special intergenerational relationship would be great for Grandparents Day or just an “I love you” storytime. Bell’s softly smudgy, crosshatched pencil illustrations show animal grandpas and kids in a bounty of recognizable, everyday situations.
It’s hard not to love this one—just like an indulgent grandpa. (Picture book. 3-7)