Wednesday, April 28, 2010

What's Gramma Doing in Heaven?

Cecilia's Gramma recently died. What's Gramma Doing in Heaven? is the story of a mother and daughter (Cecilia) visiting the grave of Cecilia's Gramma. It's written by Whitney Manse and illustrated by Kurt Jones.

Cecilia is curious what happened to Gramma. At Gramma's graveside, Mom shares that Gramma went to Heaven, and what she may be doing there: seeing friends and family, finding her mansion, and eating from the Tree of Life, among other things. Mom also says Gramma is in Heaven because she loved (and still loves) Jesus. Mom assures Cecilia they'll both get to see Gramma again someday since they love Jesus, and that's how you get to go to Heaven.

What I Like: The illustrations in this book are beautiful. They capture the story and what Cecilia and Mom discuss and, I think, helps demonstrate to a child the possibility of what Heaven may look like.

The story is heartwarming. I like the concept of Mom taking Cecilia to the graveside to not only place flowers, but also discuss the meaning of death, which isn't treated as a sad event - rather, a celebration.

What I Dislike: I'm very cognizant of the fact certain denominations think differently about Heaven and when one goes there. This book, while it has a list of scripture references at the back to support the story, may fail this particular litmus test for some readers since Gramma is portrayed as going to Heaven before the Second Coming.

Also, especially for younger readers, I thought seeing Cecilia's gramma as a young woman (as she's portrayed through all pages of the book save one) may be disconcerting for children who may not understand the concept of a "new body", which wasn't addressed in the book. Most children will probably be used to seeing a grandparent as older.

Overall Rating: Good

Age Appeal: 4 - 8 years.

Publishing Info: Tate Publishing, 2010; ISBN: 978-1-61566-852-6; Paperback $9.99

Buy it at for $9.99

Special Info: In addition to the denominational issue mentioned above, one image showed Jesus' face. He is portrayed as Caucasian.

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1 comment:

Ticia said...

Thanks for this review. I'm going to see if I can find this, we've recently had a death in the family and my kids are still discussing it sometimes.