AT GRANDMA'S

Rhonda Gowler Greene, Author, Karla Firehammer, Illustrator
Rhonda Gowler Greene, Author, Karla Firehammer, Illustrator , illus. by Karla Firehammer. Holt $15.95 (32p) ISBN 978-0-8050-6336-3
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From morning ("Big bed/ Yellow sun/ Breakfast bread with cinnamon") to night ("Big bed/ Silver light/ Hug and kiss... to say good night"), a child's sleepover at grandma's house is sweetly rendered here. Firehammer's (The Flea's Sneeze) country hound-dog grandma may bake muffins and keep a cozy house, but she also wears sturdy overalls, can paddle a canoe and knows how to wield a hammer. The countryside is a harmony of muted, soft-edged colors, with rolling gumdrop hills and sunflowers as big as dinner plates, but the overall effect is tender rather than cloying. Greene's (Barnyard Song) three-line-per-page text offers haiku-like glimpses of various settings ("Wooden bridge/ White-cloud sky/ Cattails and a butterfly") as the genderless child and grandmother pick berries, have a picnic, watch fireflies and wear matching "bunny slippers on four feet." The fondness the two share as they potter about bathes both text and illustrations in "golden light," like the "noodle soup that tastes just right." While there's little plot, the various scenes add up to a day filled with enough wonders to make young readers long for a similar excursion of their own. Ages 2-5. (June)

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