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Grandma Calls Me Beautiful    by Barbara M. Joosse & Barbara Lavallee order for
Grandma Calls Me Beautiful
by Barbara M. Joosse
Order:  USA  Can
Chronicle, 2008 (2008)

Read an Excerpt

* *   Reviewed by Hilary Daninhirsch

Barbara Joosse excels at I love you picture books. In fact, one of my all-time favorite children's books is Joosse's I Love You the Purplest. Her new book chronicles the love between a grandmother and a little girl, whose name here is Beautiful.

The setting is Hawaii, where a little girl begs her grandmother to tell her the story of her birth. Incorporating lilting Hawaiian terms and metaphors, the grandmother flashbacks to Beautiful's birth and tells her:

'You're bright as a kukui torch.
Your breath is sweet as breadfruit pudding,
And your skin is soft as kappa cloth.

I will call you Beautiful,
because you are.

Back to the present day, Grandma reassures her granddaughter of her beauty, despite her plain black hair and brown skin, and despite her being naughty or squirmy.

A loving tribute to the unconditional love between grandparents and grandchildren, Grandma Calls Me Beautiful is awash in rich, bright colors and even has an informative glossary of Hawaiian terms and pronunciations at the end of the book.

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