cover image A Balloon for Grandad

A Balloon for Grandad

Nigel Gray. Orchard Books (NY), $13.95 (30pp) ISBN 978-0-531-05755-1

Sam's balloon escapes and flies up into the blue sky. ``I want my balloon,'' he cries, to which the wind responds, ``It's mine!'' and carries it away. Sam's father is reassuring, however, with his description of the balloon's progress as it journeys across mountains and drifts ``high over the hot yellow sand of the desert.'' He tells how it flies past falcons, hawks and vultures and comes to land on an island where Sam's Grandad Abdulla lives, tending his goats and date trees. The balloona vivid red with silver starsfloats down to Grandad Abdulla who receives it as a gift from his distant grandson. Exotic pictures, richly bordered in mosaic-like frames, capture the feeling of adventure; adults and children alike will appreciate the surprising treatment of what seems to be, at first, a loss. Ages 3-7. (Oct.)