When Charley Met Grampa

Overview

The creators of Charley’s First Night return with a tale of a boy, a puppy, and a grampa — an enchanting picture book bearing all the hallmarks of a classic.

It’s a snowy day, and Grampa is coming by train for a visit. Henry can’t wait! He sets out with Charley, his beloved pup, pulling a sled for Grampa’s suitcase. To pass time at the station, Henry tells Charley about Grampa — how he has the longest feet and snores wild, and how he doesn’t know how to be friends with a dog. At...

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Overview

The creators of Charley’s First Night return with a tale of a boy, a puppy, and a grampa — an enchanting picture book bearing all the hallmarks of a classic.

It’s a snowy day, and Grampa is coming by train for a visit. Henry can’t wait! He sets out with Charley, his beloved pup, pulling a sled for Grampa’s suitcase. To pass time at the station, Henry tells Charley about Grampa — how he has the longest feet and snores wild, and how he doesn’t know how to be friends with a dog. At last Grampa arrives, but when a sudden gust of wind blows his hat away, Charley disappears into the whirling snow — and returns, to their relief, carrying Grampa’s green cap! With lyrical simplicity, Amy Hest narrates a small, turning moment in the life of a child and a grandparent, while Helen Oxenbury renders every gesture and detail with signature warmth and charm.

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Editorial Reviews

The New York Times - Sarah Harrison Smith
…Hest's childlike diction brings charm and interest to the text…Oxenbury's pictures are reminiscent of a past grandparents may remember from their own childhood, offering the reassurance of generational continuity…this is exactly the sort of pretty, sweet and gently funny book that is likely to appeal to older adults and younger children together.
Publishers Weekly
Having gotten to know each other in Charley’s First Night (2012), Henry and his dog Charley are now thick as thieves. But Henry’s grandfather is visiting, and he has “never been friends with a dog before.” There’s no need to worry, though: Hest and Oxenbury’s story is every bit as sweet and tender as its predecessor, and Charley proves he’s worthy of Grampa’s affection on a snowy afternoon when the man’s hat blows away. Oxenbury’s meticulous pencil-and-watercolor paintings and Hest’s knowing prose continue to reveal the unconditional love that flows between Charley and the humans in his life. Ages 3–7. (Sept.)
From the Publisher
Hest and Oxenbury’s story is every bit as sweet and tender as its predecessor... Oxenbury’s meticulous pencil-and-watercolor paintings and Hest’s knowing prose continue to reveal the unconditional love that flows between Charley and the humans in his life.
—Publishers Weekly (starred review)

Charley is pure joy with fur and will surely bring a smile to young readers. Charming, detailed pencil and watercolor illustrations feature framed, softly hued scenes both cozy and frigid. This is a tender story about the warm affection between a grandfather and his grandson. A real winner.
—School Library Journal (starred review)

Picking up where Charley’s First Night ended, the tale of Charley and Henry Korn continues in this charming stand-alone storybook. ... Hest’s language is descriptive and lyrical... Oxenbury’s pencil-and-watercolor illustrations are enchanting... Children will love Charley and Grampa, too.
—Kirkus Reviews (starred review)

A synopsis doesn’t begin to reveal this story’s sweetness. Each turn of the page brings a touching moment... It’s hard to imagine a better match for Hest’s warm words than Oxenbury’s beautifully depicted snowy days. Framed in the soft gray of November sky, each picture tells its own story—and every time Charley appears, adorableness ensues. A delight.
—Booklist (starred review)

Here, as elsewhere, Hest’s childlike diction brings charm and interest to the text… [T]his is exactly the sort of pretty, sweet and gently funny book that is likely to appeal to older adults and younger children together.
—The New York Times Online

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Henry takes his new dog Charley with him to the train station to meet his visiting grandfather. After they have waited a long time, Grampa finally arrives. He is not sure at first whether Charley is friendly or fierce. As they walk through the deep snow, the wind snatches Grampa's cap away. Charley chases it, disappearing in the falling snow, and then reappearing with Grampa's cap in his jaws. By that evening Grampa and Charley have obviously connected. They fall asleep together in Grampa's bed. "And Grampa snored wild." Henry is relieved that those he cares for have become friends, in this worthy sequel to Charley's First Night. For this simple tale, Oxenbury uses her pencils and watercolors to create visuals that capture and hold our attention. We meet the appealing characters in action on the jacket/cover. In full-page scenes with facing text pages including some vignettes, she creates naturalistic characters and objects, setting them within wide plus narrow frames. Shadowy sketches of Charley fill the end pages. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—In a satisfying follow-up to Charley's First Night (Candlewick, 2012), Grampa, who admits that he is uncertain about getting to know Henry's puppy, is coming to visit and to meet Charley. The boy and puppy wait for him at the train station while snow gently covers the tracks and the town. Upon his arrival, the large gentleman and the tiny puppy size each other up while Grampa inquires, "…are you friendly or fierce?" When the wind picks up and Grampa's cap flies away, Charley takes off into the white world and it's feared that he's lost in the snow. But the diminutive dog saves the day by bringing the cap back, thus revealing he's both friendly and fierce in his determination, ensuring their burgeoning bond. Charley is pure joy with fur and will surely bring a smile to young readers. Charming, detailed pencil and watercolor illustrations feature framed, softly hued scenes both cozy and frigid. This is a tender story about the warm affection between a grandfather and his grandson. A real winner.—Maryann H. Owen, Children's Literature Specialist, Mt. Pleasant, WI
Kirkus Reviews
★ 2013-08-15
Picking up where Charley's First Night (2012) ended, the tale of Charley and Henry Korn continues in this charming stand-alone storybook. Now that new-puppy Charley has settled in, Henry writes to Grampa to tell him all about Charley and to invite Grampa to visit. With elegant simplicity, the premise is revealed: Grampa agrees to come but states that he has never been friends with a dog before. The ensuing action takes place when Henry and Charley go off through the snow to pick up Grampa from the village train station. As before, Hest's language is descriptive and lyrical: " ‘Wait till you meet Grampa,' I told Charley, and he danced in the wind and his ears blew back and I pulled my sled for Grampa's suitcase." Oxenbury's pencil-and-watercolor illustrations are enchanting, perfectly capturing the town, Henry and Charley's trek, and their anxious wait at the station. With a WHOOOOO WHOOOOOOOO, the train finally arrives. Although Charley and Grampa look at each other a long time, and Charley even smiles, it is not at all certain they will be friends until, in a tense, dramatic moment, Charley effects the heroic rescue of Grampa's windblown hat through the ever-deepening snow. One moment changes everything. That night, Charley and Grampa look into each other's eyes again, this time telegraphing, "I love you." Children will love Charley and Grampa, too. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780763653149
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press
  • Publication date: 9/10/2013
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 533,327
  • Age range: 3 - 7 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.70 (w) x 9.96 (h) x 0.43 (d)

Meet the Author

Amy Hest is the author of many beloved and award-winning picture books, including Kiss Good Night, illustrated by Anita Jeram, and When Jessie Came Across the Sea, illustrated by P.J. Lynch. Amy Hest lives in New York City.

Helen Oxenbury is the celebrated illustrator of many well-loved books, including There’s Going to Be a Baby, written by her husband, John Burningham. Helen Oxenbury lives in London.

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