Review for Meatballs for Grandpa

Review for Meatballs for Grandpa

Meatballs for Grandpa by Jeanette Fazzari Jones, Jaclyn Sinquett, Family in the kitchen dancing, food, Italian, grandparents, alzheimer, picture bookI received this book from Edelweiss/the publisher in exchange of an honest review.

When I requested this book I didn’t exactly look at the blurb, haha, I just saw meatballs, grandparents, and a very sweet cover. The book is still all that, but also about dementia/Alzheimer. Grandpa is slowly forgetting all around him and doesn’t recognise his grandchild that easily/any more. My heart broke when I found that out, but I was also curious to see if grandma was right, would taste and smell bring back some clarity for grandpa?

And so begins an afternoon with cooking and it was just beautifully done, not just with wonderful storytelling but also with gorgeous art everywhere. Every little thing is illustrated and I loved it. I loved seeing grandma tell her granddaughter and husband what to do and see them really do it. See grandfather’s hand get held and then spices being added in his palm for him to add to the sauce. I loved seeing the girl close her eyes and make the meatballs by touching. I loved seeing the sprinkle of love everywhere. It was just wonderful. And I have to confess, it made me hungry as well. I wanted to step into the story and help out and maybe get a bit of the yummy food as well!

But the biggest thing was, would grandpa remember? Would he have a moment of clarity? And when would it happen? Would he really need to taste it all to spark that memory? Or is just the smell, the sensation of helping out his family enough? I was hoping along with grandma and granddaughter. Hoping for that spark to appear. Did it happen you ask? Yes. I don’t see it as a spoiler because of the material/age group. I can tell you I cried. It was such a wonderful moment. So sweet, so wonderful. And knowing that maybe one day this won’t be enough to spark that memory also broke my heart. I hope for now that these memory sparks can keep on happening.

I loved that we got a small Italian > English word list at the beginning of the book and at the end we also get the recipe to the meatballs and I will definitely be trying them out when I have the chance. Yum!

I need to mention the illustrations again, they were just a feast. Beautiful details. Everything is rich and colourful. The story really came to life.

All in all, a gorgeous book about family, about food, about finding that memory again, and more. I would HIGHLY recommend this book to all.

Star rating, 5 stars

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