Joey Visits Grandpa by Patricia Nichvolodoff

Joey Visits Grandpa

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KIRKUS REVIEW

A picture book chronicles a day with a boy and his grandfather full of fun and minor mishaps.

Joey and his grandfather happily spend an active day together inside Grandpa’s house and at various places nearby. They feed the fish, read together, cook pancakes, ride in Grandpa’s truck to the grocery store, eat lunch, and go fishing. Each activity takes place with “one small problem.” Over and over again, Grandpa manages to lose his glasses (“When Joey wanted Grandpa to read a book with him, Grandpa’s glasses were missing. Grandpa looked under the couch and under the cushions and under the rug, but he couldn’t find his glasses”). He loses them in the fish tank, the pancake batter, the grocery bag, and the freezer. Joey manages to find them every time, and Grandpa repeats some variation of “Well, get a load of that...How did they get in there?” Sharp-eyed Joey, always one step ahead of his absentminded grandfather, even proposes a solution—putting a string on the glasses and tying it to Grandpa’s pocket. But in the final panel, foolish Grandpa, after fishing with Joey at a lake, has his glasses with him but leaves his boots on the dock. The relationship of grandfather and grandson is heartwarming and charming, as is the concept of the youngster coming to the aid of his relative by finding his constantly misplaced glasses and coming up with a remedy. As a read-aloud story, the book by author Nichvolodoff (Cleo’s Treasure Hunt, 2016, etc.) and illustrator Paradero possesses tremendous potential for the young reader to participate by discovering the glasses in all the amusing spots and playing along. Unfortunately, both the volume’s timing and the illustrations work against the reader. For a young child to understand the problem and discover the glasses, the images need to accentuate the spectacles and allow the reader to see clearly what is going to happen to them. In most of the illustrations, the glasses are not prominent enough for a child to identify them. The reader only discovers after the fact that the glasses fall into the fish tank and the pancake batter. These situations offer great comic possibilities for a young child to witness these calamities about to occur and point them out.

An appealing read-aloud tale about a duo’s adventures that would benefit from enhanced illustrations and timing.

Pub Date: May 19th, 2015
ISBN: 978-1-4907-5910-4
Page count: 28pp
Publisher: Trafford
Program: Kirkus Indie
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