Review Blog

Dec 09 2019

Hey Grandude! by Paul McCartney

cover image

Illus. by Kathryn Durst. Penguin Random House, 2019. ISBN: 9780241375655. hbk.
(Ages 4-8) Themes: Grandparents, Imagination, Magic, Adventure. This book tells a charming story of four children who, while visiting their Grandad (or Grandude), brighten their drizzly, cold day by going on some exciting adventures. Using a magic compass and some postcards, Grandude says the magic words and they are transported to a variety of exotic locations, including a beach, the wild west and a peaceful Alpine scene. At each location something goes wrong and they need to be whisked away to safety. Grandude is always there ready and able to perform the rescue just in time. The magic words used by Grandude form an enjoyable opportunity for children to chant with the reader as they are repeated for each scene.
The story is enjoyable but not fantastic. The children I read it to like the idea of the story, but it is not one that will be a favourite for years to come. It seemed a little disjointed and the side jokes could have been left out producing a slicker read. Less is more. The story finishes with the magic that every parent wishes for; the children in bed and asleep without the rigorous bedtime routine. Now that's magic!
The illustrations are appropriate and colourful with plenty to look at for the audience if read aloud. Explanations of what a postcard and a compass is could form an entertaining discussion at Junior primary level in schools.
Gabrielle Anderson

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