Grandad is grieving. He hides away in his garden. He needs time. But he also needs love. Tibble is full of love and shows Grandad that remembering the people we love can be a wonderful, funny, poignant thing. A beautiful story to offer reassurance to grieving children.
Reviewed by Rachel Elvidge
Tibble and Grandpa by the versatile Wendy Meddour comes with a warning – Handle with care, and have the tissues on standby!
This beautiful book, illustrated by renowned artist Daniel Egneus, carries such a powerful emotional punch that it made me blink away tears at my desk. Grandpa is grieving and busying himself in his garden. Tibble doesn’t understand why Grandpa is ignoring him but never stops trying to communicate with him. Slowly, Grandpa returns. Together they decide on their top three of everything, from sandwiches to jellyfish. Finally, Tibble tells Grandpa that his top three Grannies include “Granny who is dead” which leads Grandpa to share his top three memories of his wife.
This is a gentle story that deals with death openly and honestly and would make a useful starting point for discussing bereavement with children. It would be reassuring for a child to see that although people can become lost in grief, they return to us if we continue loving and being kind to them. It also reinforces the point that it is healthy and a good thing to talk about people who have died, and that these conversations can bring comfort to the bereaved.