Patience brews a wonderful reunion for this grandfather.
A contented elderly gentleman, portrayed in inviting watercolor-painted paper collages in a bold color palette, goes through his daily routine. “Every morning, Papa wakes up and drinks some tea. / He waters his plants and tidies up.” Sparse narration accompanies Papa as he heads into town via bus. While he window shops, he is inspired by the display in the window of a local craft store before going to enjoy “his favorite lunch—dumplings!” The bright art is the primary driver propelling the story forward. The simple layout reads like a graphic novel, with linear panels on most pages. The quaint visuals illustrate each movement Papa makes on the following day, picking up craft supplies—“Ah, must be Thursday!” the cashier muses—getting dumplings to go, and picking wildflowers in anticipation. The special event arrives in the form of an adorable pink-trimmed grandchild with brown hair tied up in pigtails. Dialogue between Papa and the child takes over the narration as they enjoy a shared favorite lunch of dumplings, wash dishes, then create a butterfly kite, finishing with a floral flourish. All characters have pale skin, allowing readers to see a variety of identities, including Asian, biracial, and/or white. The deliberate, methodical pace is reminiscent of Mr. Rogers’, ideal for young readers outlining every action of each endearing character.
A quietly charming debut. (Picture book. 3-5)