cover image I Miss My Grandpa

I Miss My Grandpa

Jin Xiaojing. Little, Brown, $18.99 (40p) ISBN 978-0-316-41787-7

A child wonders about her grandfather, who died before she was born. She asks her grandmother to describe him, and the poetic characterizations that ensue draw lucid parallels between the girl’s grandfather and familiar family members: “Your middle uncle, Chang-zi, has your grandpa’s eyes,” the grandmother says. And corresponding family members reminisce in turn: “Uncle Chang-zi says,/ ‘When your grandpa looked at the world,/ he was quiet and patient like a crocodile./ When he closed his eyes, his imagination sparked.’ ” In several powerfully intimate moments, the family engages in the special act of collective remembering, recalling how the man interacted with the world. Xiaojing’s mixed-media illustrations begin with loose, lively lines depicting the girl and her grandmother, then delve into the abstract—a moon in the sky, an arrangement of stars—as if launching readers into the protagonist’s imagination. A tender and poignant resource for any child reckoning with the absence of a grandparent. Ages 4–8. (Sept.)