Author Ewa Jozefkowicz has picked out some favourite books showcasing brilliant Grans - starting with Flick’s Grandmother Sylvie in Ewa's own new book, The Key to Finding Jack.

The Key to Finding Jack
Ewa Jozefkowicz

The Key to Finding Jack is the story of a lost brother, a mysterious key and the search for its intended owner. The heroine, Flick, is Jack’s younger sister. When her brother goes missing while on his gap year in Peru, she spends many hours sitting in his room debating what to do. Here, she comes across a key that he used to wear around his neck and which he seems to have left behind, with the note ‘For S.F. to keep until I’m back.’ Flick makes it her mission to find out the identity of the mysterious person behind the initials. 

 

Her search results in her meeting many fascinating S.F.s, from the owner of the shop where Jack used to work, to a homeless girl he once helped. One of the people on Flick’s list is her very own grandmother, Sylvie, whom she hasn’t visited in ages. Sylvie has always frightened Flick, with her strictness, and the high expectations that she placed on everyone around her. But, after spending more time with her, Flick finds out that there is much more to her grandmother than meets the eye - she’s a woman with a sense of humour, an ability to see hidden qualities in people, and an interesting history. 

 

I’ve read some incredible children’s stories featuring grandmothers, which inspired me to create Sylvie. Below are some of my favourites.

The Witches
Roald Dahl

Here, Grandmother is bold, brave and full of great advice on how to cope in a world filled with secret child-hating witches. She works with her grandson (The Boy) to outsmart and eradicate the Grand High Witch and her followers.

The Summer Book
Tove Jansson

 The protagonist, Sophia, spends months with her grandmother on their remote family island in the Gulf of Finland. They row boats, collect bones and driftwood, visit the magic forest, adopt a cat and build Venetian palaces in the middle of the night.

Gangsta Granny
David Walliams

Ben hates spending time with his boring granny while his parents go off to their ballroom dancing, but it turns out that there is much more to her than meets the eye! Because Granny is really a gangsta. Together they go on an adventure and become the best of friends.

Double Act
 Jacqueline Wilson

 One of my favourite childhood books. Twins Ruby and Garnet rely on their grandmother to be a much-needed calming influence when their world is turned upside down. 

My Hippie Grandmother
 Reeve Lindbergh 

I loved this rhyming book which is a reminder that not all grandmothers have the traditional grey hair and old fashioned clothes. The grandmother here wears vibrant, tie-dyed clothes and has a guitar-strumming boyfriend. She also has a wonderful bond with her granddaughter. 

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