They have the best candy, they sometimes care for or live with their grandkids, they are inclined to take junior to the Disney store and tell him to pick out "whatever he likes." They were — in some hazy cases — at Woodstock (how damp it was and how few sandwiches there were!). There are million reasons to celebrate the bond that tots have with their grandparents, as these children's books show. After all, chances are they will be responsible for reading about 4,000 books to their grandkid between the ages of 0 and 5.
To that end, for grandparents near and far, there's a little something in each of these 9 books that will hit on what makes the relationship so special (outside of their ability to hand back kiddo at the end of the day, or to leave potty training up to mom and/or dad). Some will take you back to your own childhood, along that line that extends back through time from one generation to the one before. The common thread is that each of these treasured kids' books acknowledges that grandparents loom large in kids' worlds, whether they are still here, or have left behind an impression that will stay with kids all their days.
'Hope' by Matthew Cordell
'Between Us And Abuela: A Family Story From The Border' by Mitali Perkins, illustrated by Sara Palacios
Maria and her little brother Juan are going to see their grandmother at the U.S.-Mexico border for Las Posados Sin Fronteras, a holiday celebration. Abuela is on the Mexico side and Maria, Juan, and their mother are on the U.S. side. But this one day, they are allowed to visit with her and talk through the fence. It's lovely how Maria only vaguely remembers her abuela's voice, but the love between all of them is so evident.
'The Truth About Grandparents' by Elina Ellis
Grandparents of today don't get enough credit! Just because they are old doesn't mean they aren't the coolest people you know. The grandparents in this story do yoga, jump on trampolines, and go on adventures. This book celebrates those rad grandparents who are fun and young at heart.
'I Love My Glam-ma' by Samantha Berger, illustrated by Sujean Rim
Glam-ma breaks some stereotypes we have about grandmothers. This grandma is fabulous. Lots of grandparents these days are eschewing the standard grandparent names. You just don't meet as many Nannys or Pop-Pops as you used to. Glam-ma is totally representative of the latest and greatest class of grandparents.
'Love And The Rocking Chair' by Leo & Diane Dillon
This book doesn't come out until October, but while you're feeling the grandparent love, bookmark this one to add to your shelf. The story is about a rocking chair that gets loved and used and passed on to a new generation, but, really, it's about how we pass along love.
'My Grandma And Me' by Mina Javaherbin, illustrated by Lindsey Yankey
A young girl in Iran idolizes her grandmother. She treasures the everyday moments they spend together. Everything from chores to prayers to make-believe adventures is special with Grandma. This book will be special for kids who live with their grandparents.
'I Miss My Grandpa' by Jin Xiaojing
'Julián Is A Mermaid' by Jessica Love
Julian Is A Mermaid by Jessica Love ($16.99, IndieBound)
An understated book about taking a ride home on the subway with his abuela after swim class, Julián Is A Mermaid gives the reader a sense of the world of possibility and magic his grandma has opened up.
Inspired by the "mermaids" he saw on the way home, Julián gathers together pieces for a fabulous outfit, and when Julián worries what his abuela might think, we get a glimpse at the profound impact grandparents have on young kids.
'Sea Glass Summer' by Michelle Houts, illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline
On its face, this is the story of a boy who goes to a cottage by the sea for the summer, but there, he finds traces of the past in the sea glass he collects. Summer of course comes to an end, and the twist ending makes this an extra special story for grandparents and grandkids alike.