With a wiggle of her toes and a few words addressed to her feet, the narrator's grandmother begins her tale, a story "full of twists and turns like a path through the woods." Starting on a cold December day when she was a small girl, Grandmother takes us through life in Russia before and after the Revolution, past World War II, and into Ellis Island. It's a warm, uplifting, often touching story of adversity overcome that is made even more poignant by the vivid Chagal-like paintings that so precisely capture the mystery and magic of the narrative. An interesting addition to the history bookshelf. 1998 (orig.
- Jan Lieberman
John Cech retells his grandmother-in-law's story of her life in Russia and her eventual escape to America after W.W.II with her husband and child. Her story is a synopsis of 20th century Russian history told in familial terms so that her granddaughter Korie can understand and remember it. She begins her tale, "Feet. Where haven't you been? What haven't we been through together?" The stylized paintings depict the love, hardships, and survival of the family but always with symbols of hope. This story is an inspiration to others to recollect their personal journeys. 1998 (orig.
John Cech writes plays, poetry, and fiction for both children and adults, and is a Professor of English at the University of Florida in Gainesville. He is also the Director of the Center for Children’s Literature and Culture and has served as a judge for The New York Times Best Illustrated Books of the Year, as well as the Boston Globe/Horn Book Awards; was President of the Children’s Literature Association; and won the Chandler Award of Merit for his work in Children’s Literature.