Tuesday, April 27, 2010

Granny Gomez and Jigsaw, by Deborah Underwood (ages 3-6)

Children have a special relationship with animals – they can understand how an animal can be a good friend. I used to tell my secrets to my cat - who else would listen so attentively and never tell another person my deepest thoughts? Here is a warm tale that celebrates friendship with a pet.
Granny Gomez and Jigsaw
by Deborah Underwood
illustrated by Scott Magoon
NY: Disney Hyperion, 2010
ages 3 - 6
available on Amazon or at your local library
Granny Gomez feels lonely at times, and wonders about getting a pet. Her young friend William decides that’s the perfect solution, and brings her a piglet. Although a pig is not what she had in mind, Granny Gomez and this little pig grow to become good friends. They eat watermelon together, do jigsaw puzzles together (thus his name Jigsaw), and watch cooking shows together.

But as their friendship grows, so does Jigsaw – bigger and bigger and bigger. Soon, Granny can hardly lift him up and down the stairs for their daily walks. This granny is no push-over; she has a can-do-attitude and decides to build Jigsaw his own barn, complete with TV and kitchen. When Jigsaw is set to spend his first night in the barn, the two realize how lonely they will be without each other.

I love Granny's spirit and initiative. Underwood and Magoon manage to make her both sweet and totally capable. She swings a hammer, wears a toolbelt and plays the drums. She's the type of grandmother who would bake you cookies and make you a tree fort.

San Francisco author Deborah Underwood’s warm tale of friendship has both cozy charm and witty details that bring children back to it again and again.

Deborah Underwood has two other picture books that have just come out this spring. The Quiet Book is on the New York Times Best Seller list - fantastic news! The review copy of Granny Gomez and Jigsaw was kindly sent by the publisher. If you make a purchase using the Amazon links on this page, a small percentage will go to Great Kid Books (at no cost to you). Thank you for your support.

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