MY HIPPIE GRANDMOTHER

Reeve Lindbergh, Author, Abby Carter, Illustrator , illus. by Abby Carter. Candlewick $15.99 (24p) ISBN 978-0-7636-0671-8

"My mother is a lawyer./ My dad works on TV," but this young narrator's role model is her beloved throwback grandmother, who favors tie-dyed T-shirts and love beads, farms organically and drives a purple bus (she even has a cat called Woodstock). Oh yes—and Grandma also has a gray ponytailed boyfriend named Jim. Lindbergh (The Circle of Days) and Carter (Never Ride Your Elephant to School) make it clear that this grandmother is a jewel. Working in fluid ink-lines and translucent pastel watercolors that suit Grandma's laidback mindset, Carter portrays the heroine as a lanky, handsome woman, with intense, twinkling eyes, a ready smile and long, gray-streaked hair that seems to be animated by her life force ("She hasn't cut her hair at all/ since nineteen sixty-nine," boasts the adoring narrator). In Lindbergh's bouncy, breezy rhymes, what shines through is Grandma's strong political conscience (she takes her granddaughter to City Hall for a two-woman antiwar protest), her freewheeling gusto and the fulfillment she gets from her likeminded mate (in one spread, adults will detect a gleam in Grandma's eye as she regards her paramour). Totally groovy—and in its own impish way, an eloquent rejoinder to these more buttoned-down times. Ages 4-up. (Feb.)

Reviewed on: 12/23/2002
Release date: 02/01/2003
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