|Really and Truly: A Story About Dementia by Emilie Rivard and Anne-Claire Deslisle|
|Category: Confident Readers|
|Reviewer: Zoe Morris|
|Summary: A thoughtful book about a sensitive topic, this is a good way in to talking to children about changes facing older relatives.|
|Buy? Yes||Borrow? Yes|
|Pages: 24||Date: June 2014|
|Publisher: Franklin Watts|
Every child who is lucky enough to have grandparents loves spending time with them. After all, no one can tell a story better than a grandparent. Charlie and Grandpa have a relationship like that, and no matter whether it’s a pirate who lives in the attic, or a gnome who lives in the cellar, Grandpa can keep him entertained for days with his stories.
But now, Grandpa is not too well. He doesn’t remember the old stories, and sometimes he doesn’t even recognise this family when they come to visit. But Charlie still wants to spend time with him, and reconnect. Can stories be the way to do this?
This is a sweet, tasteful, delicately written story of how dementia can affect family members of sufferers as well as those with the disease itself. It’s a little sad in places, because it’s not the sort of story where everyone can live happily ever after, but it’s a really important topic, becoming increasingly more so, and I think books like this will help explain to children that it’s nothing they’ve done or not done that has changed their relationship, but that sometimes people can become unwell on the inside where you can’t see it.
While the text isn’t too complex, I think this is definitely a book for sharing with older children, for reading and discussing together. The drawings are a little more developed, a little more grown up than some so it doesn’t look like a toddler’s reading material, even though it’s a picture book of sorts.
This is a book that you don’t read to enjoy as a story (though you do feel proud of Charlie in places), but you read to learn and as a starting point for discussion. Children are often left out of the loop on health problems that effect friends and relatives, but when it’s something like Dementia that they might see and have to live with for many years to come, a book like this is informative, useful and important. It Really and Truly is.
Thanks go to the publishers for supplying this book.
Grandma by Jessica Shepherd is another outstanding book on this theme, and highly recommended.
You can read more book reviews or buy Really and Truly: A Story About Dementia by Emilie Rivard and Anne-Claire Deslisle at Amazon.co.uk
You can read more book reviews or buy Really and Truly: A Story About Dementia by Emilie Rivard and Anne-Claire Deslisle at Amazon.com.
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