Top positive review
Reviewed in the United States on October 3, 2010
I love this book! This is the touching story of a relationship between a young girl and her grandfather, and how their love of dance forms a bond between them that is enduring.
The story is perfectly pitched for children, including those learning to read. The rhythm and cadence of the dance steps wind their way into the narrative, giving the story a pace and liveliness. The story itself is warm, with a tenderness that stays authentic and accessible for kids, without crossing the line into becoming sugary. I think most children could easily relate to Emma and her love for her grandfather, and the author does a wonderful job of showing a child's perspective on their relationship. Emma shows us first how her grandfather kindles the love of dance in her, their special connection as a result, her uncertainty about how to handle the changes in his memory, her happiness in finding a way to still connect with him, and then her simple acceptance of giving the same gift of dance back to her grandfather in her own turn. Adults will also feel and appreciate all the emotional undercurrents that don't have to be spelled out in the story. The vibrant illustrations bring the perfect touches of charm and humor.
This book is perfect for any child who has a special relationship with an older family member, including those trying to understand changes such as Alzheimer's. But, no special situation is required to enjoy this book, it is an enjoyable read for any and all. My daughter and I love this book, and I highly recommend it!