This German import portrays the relationships of seven animal grandmas and grandchildren in rhyming verse.
The first grandmother-grandchild pair sets up an expectation that the book is an animal alphabet, but it’s not: “My grandma has a treat for me— / she’s baked the ABCs! / I start out by eating A / And make my way to B.” A grandmother rabbit looks on as her grandchild eats letter-shaped cookies. Each double-page spread features a different animal and activity: frogs share a string-can phone; the elephants gather flowers for a bouquet; the moles dig for buried treasure; the grandma sheep knits a sweater for the grandchild’s teddy bear; the bears go sledding. The last pair is a human grandma and grandchild, both Caucasian, sitting in a hammock: “My grandma sings me a lullaby, / rocking me to and fro— / ‘Rock-a-bye-baby, in the treetop’— /and off to sleep I go.” The highly saturated illustrations bleed off the page and add amusing details, such as the grandmother frog’s large-brimmed hat and pearls and the grandmother mole’s bright pink gardening gloves. The text is disjointed and totally dependent on the artwork (for an adult reader) to identify the kind of animal on each spread. Companion title The Best Grandpa in the World! presents different animal pairs (except for humans) but is otherwise virtually identical in concept and flaws.
The bright colors of the pictures will appeal to little kids, but overall, this pales in creativity to other grandmother stories. (Picture book. 4-7)