Review of Just like Grandma

Just like Grandma Just like Grandma
by Kim Rogers; illus. by Julie Flett
Primary    Heartdrum/HarperCollins    32 pp.
1/23    9780063049246    $17.99

Becca emulates her grandmother by learning to bead, painting a sunrise, and dancing at the powwow. Her grandmother joyfully shares skills, cultural traditions, and affection; in a refreshing twist, Grandma also learns from her granddaughter as they shoot hoops while Becca practices for basketball tryouts. Grandpa appears regularly throughout, most often preparing food for them all. Debut author Rogers (Wichita and Affiliated Tribes) successfully blends both traditional and contemporary aspects of life for this family, offering a sense of what being part of an Indigenous community can mean. The text is spare and poetic, primarily describing the relationship between grandmother and grandchild but also delivering a small sports-related tale. (After a successful tryout, Becca and her grandparents go out for pizza.) Cree-Métis artist Flett (Still This Love Goes On, rev. 11/22) gives life and depth to the text with her stunning mixed-media illustrations. Spreads resemble collage with layers of color and texture. The book provides a valuable opportunity for readers of all backgrounds to reflect on what they can learn from an older generation. Handsome book design, eloquent text, and an authentic portrayal of its subject make this a welcome addition to collections.

From the January/February 2023 issue of The Horn Book Magazine.

Maeve Visser Knoth

Maeve Visser Knoth is a librarian at Phillips Brooks School, Menlo Park, ­California. She has chaired the Notable Children’s Books Committee and taught at Notre Dame de Namur University and Lesley University.

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