Lost

Usher, Sam. Lost. Somerville, Massachusetts: Templar Books, an imprint of Candlewick Press, 2022, ©2021.
A new day brings new adventures despite the miserably cold weather. A little boy trots along with his grandfather and ends up on a grand journey through a snowstorm to find a lost dog. The combination of narration and conversation, the full-page expressive illustrations, the size and style of the font, the placement of sentences on the pages, the zany adventure, and the little bit of wisdom at the end all combine to create another brilliant picture book by Sam Usher. Highly recommended as a read-aloud for ages 4 to 9.

Another picture book by Sam Usher

More books about grandparents

More books set in winter

Wild

Usher, Sam. Wild. Somerville, Massachusetts: Templar Books, an imprint of Candlewick Press, 2021.
A picture book by Candlewick is always worth picking up. This picture book is such fun that it’s worth picking up again and again. At least it is if you know cats. And like cats. A little boy wakes up to a ‘take care of the cat’ day with his grandfather. Sounds easy. Until the cat arrives with its own ideas. Like all great picture books, the illustrations – full of delightful details – tell as much as the words. Highly recommended for cat lovers 4 to 11 years old. P.S. If you have a new baby in the house, you might like to read this book, too. 

More stories about cats

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Mystery Bottle

Balouch, Kristen. Mystery Bottle. Northampton, MA: Crocodile Books, an imprint of Interlink Publishing Group, Inc., 2022.
What do you own that reminds you of another place, another person, another time? A boy in New York opens a package from Iran. Inside is a little bottle. And out of that bottle comes a wind that carries him from Brooklyn all the way to Tehran and into the arms of his loving grandfather. This beautifully designed picture book, a winner of the Ezra Jack Keats Award, is highly recommended for imaginative readers 5 to 9 years old. 

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Grandpa’s Stories

Coelho, Joseph and Allison Colpoys. Grandpa’s Stories: A Book of Remembering. New York: Abrams Books for Young Readers, 2019.
A young girl remembers all the special moments she shared with her grandfather. Spring. Summer, Fall. Winter. Every season holds precious memories of her beloved grandfather. A poignant picture book by an award-winning British writer and an Australian artist. Recommended for young readers who are grieving.

More stories of grief

Stolen Words

Florence, Melanie. Stolen Words. Toronto: Second Story Press, 2017.
What did you call your grandfather when you were very young? Grandpa? Opa? Papi? Baba? How does hearing the words of your early childhood affect your memories? Your emotions?
A little girl asks her grandfather what to call him in Cree. He doesn’t know. He was sent to residential school when he was young and his language was taken away from him. So she goes to her school library and comes home with a book: Introduction to Cree. Together, they learn the language of their culture. This gently powerful picture book – illustrated by Gabrielle Grimard – is highly recommended for readers of all ages.   

More stories of indigenous people of North America

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What a Beautiful Morning

Levine, Arthur A. What a Beautiful Morning! Philadelphia, PA: Running Press Kids, 2016.
Life is delightful for Noah when he visits his grandparents. Every day starts with a song and leads to all sorts of adventures. But all that changes when one summer day Grandpa can’t remember how to cut his cinnamon French toast. A touching story of love for readers who are facing the consequences of dementia in their own families. Highly recommended for all ages.

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The Good Thieves

Rundell, Katherine. The Good Thieves. New York: Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers, 2019.

After Vita’s grandfather is swindled out of his home, she and her mother sail to New York City to take him back to England. But once they arrive, Vita comes up with a new plan: to reclaim the family mansion. With the help of newfound friends – two circus performers and a reluctant pickpocket – she sets out to accomplish her mission. Katherine Rundell accomplishes her usual magic with this latest novel set in the 1920s. Mixing the sadly all-too-real and the impossibly-foolhardy-and-unrealistic, she once again tells a rollicking tale of adventure which will inspire readers 10 to 14 years of age. Highly recommended!

More stories set in the past 

More stories set in New York City

More stories of adventure

Note to teachers: Katherine Rundell’s novels are so well-written that you might like to use one as a class novel. Characterization and setting are always vivid. Plots move quickly. There are numerous sentences that reveal complex themes. And the style of writing is so brilliant that it dances across the pages.