'The best books, reviewed with insight and charm, but without compromise.'
- author Jackie French

Sunday 1 May 2011

Review: Our Gags

Our Gags is a light hearted look at an essential community-based childcare service provider: Grandma. While they have filled this role for centuries, Grandmothers can be taken for granted, so it’s lovely to read such a loving tribute.

Soon after childbirth, life can get out of control. Everyone needs a ‘Gags’ to whirl through the door and put things in order, a bit like Mary Poppins. The special bond that grows between older grandchildren and their grandparents is outlined with heartwarming humour. Annabelle Josse’s depictions of Gags in dress ups and teetering around piles of mess will elicit smiling memories for many.

However, the frailty of our older lifesavers hits home in the final pages. While grandparents can seem invincible, their bones and muscles aren’t as strong as they used to be. For all of their ability to save the day, grandparents need a special sort of care themselves.

Annabelle Josse’s Illustrations complement Catriona Hoy’s words to perfection. A look shared and a little imagination, make cleaning up with Gags a day to cherish and there’s always time to play after all the work is done.

Our Gags takes us on a journey into life with a wonderful, capable Grandmother and leaves us knowing her frailties. It’s hard to believe so much could be packed into an early chapter book. It is both precious and timeless. I know more than a few grandchildren (and Grandmas) who will treasure this tale.

- this review by Jo Burnell

Title: Our Gags
Author: Catriona Hoy
Illustrator: Annabelle Josse
Publisher: Walker Books, $11.95 RRP
Publication Date: 2011
Format: Paperback
ISBN: 9781921529092
For ages: 6 +
Type: Chapter Book