Friday 7 April 2017

ReadItDaddy's Second Picture Book of the Week - Week Ending 7th April 2017 - "Grandad's Secret Giant" by David Litchfield (Frances Lincoln Children's Books)

This week's second Book of the Week has been hotly anticipated ever since we saw the first tweets about it, and it does not disappoint...Here's the delightful "Grandad's Secret Giant" by David Litchfield...
We've spoken many times before on the blog of the emotional impact that certain children's picture books can have.

Some authors and artists just have that uncanny knack of imbuing their characters with a ton of depth, empathy and purpose that you're instantly drawn in - and if you're a pair of soppy sooks like us, you'll probably end up with a little tear in the corner of your eye as the book closes.

This is how it was with "The Bear and the Piano", David Litchfield's triumphant debut picture book which deservedly won a truckload of awards (including our Book of the Week of course).

It looks like David's setting out to make us bawl all over again with this touching tale of a boy and his grandad - and a rather special (and gigantic) friend.

Billy is a master at something I refer to as the "Tween Eye Roll" - I get this from Charlotte all the time whenever I start telling her about my misspent youth, playing in bands or rolling down Divinity Road on a Skateboard (anyone who knows Oxford will know that this was practically suicidal).

Billy rolls his eyes every time Grandad starts talking about his hidden friend, a massive giant who is always there to watch over them and keep them safe...

Grandad's secret protector - but Billy isn't convinced he's real
When Billy and Grandad work on a fabulous mural for the town, there's just one problem - they can't quite reach the top bit and Grandad knows the very person who can help.

But when Billy meets the Giant unexpectedly for the first time, he does what just about anyone else would do - panics, screams and sends the Giant scurrying away. But Grandad is patient, he explains that being different is nothing to be scared of, and the two hatch a plan to lure the Giant back out of hiding once more...

You'd better not run, you'd better not hide - Because Giant is coming to town (and he's lovely!)
David Litchfield's beautifully rim-lit bookworld is somewhere you'd love to live yourself. Gorgeous twilight illustrations echoing the loveliness of "The Bear and the Piano" underpin a story of acceptance and friendship and just a little pinch or two of magic.

There's definitely a wonderful lesson here for all of us. Be less like Billy and more like Grandad.

Charlotte's favourite bit: She absolutely adored this, from spotting the Giant to the beautiful way the book closes.

Daddy's favourite bit: It's impossible not to love this. Basking in a wonderful twinkly light, full of magic and wonder. Something tells me David will be polishing a lot of trophies for this one by the end of 2017 so we'll kick things off by bestowing upon it our Book of the Week award. Sheer brilliance!

(Kindly sent for review)

"Grandad's Secret Giant" by David Litchfield is out now, published by Frances Lincoln Children's Books.