Wednesday, April 2, 2014

"The Grudge Keeper" by Mara Rockliff and illustrated by Eliza Wheeler (Review and Giveaway)

ISBN13: 9781561457298
Peachtree Publishers
About the book:  No one in the town of Bonnyripple ever kept a grudge. No one, that is, except old Cornelius, the Grudge Keeper.

Ruffled feathers, petty snits, minor tiffs and major huffs, insults, umbrage, squabbles, dust-ups, and imbroglios-the Grudge Keeper received them all, large and small, tucking each one carefully away in his ramshackle cottage.

When a fierce wind blows through Bonnyripple, the residents are forced to rescue Cornelius and deal with their various disputes

My thoughts: The illustrations by Eliza Wheeler immediately capture one’s attention when they first see The Grudge Keeper. They are evocative of older books from years ago using simple line drawings beautifully painted with the gentle flush of water colors.  The little community is softly awash in color but the greys intrude when the story darkens for the storm. The expressions and actions illustrated are well done to suit the characters. The reader will love Cornelius, the grudge keeper, who is inundated with scrolled and rolled up grudges from the townspeople. His cottage is simply overrun with them.

The author, Mara Rockliff, has given the story a lively, frolicking feel that compels the reader to read it aloud to either himself or to whatever audience he or she can garner. The use of rhyming words, though the story is not in rhyme, and of alliteration is beautifully executed and delightful to twist around one’s tongue. 
“Ruffled feathers, petty snits, minor tiffs and major huffs, insults, umbrage, squabbles, dust-ups, and imbroglios . . . .”
“Night fell, but no candle would stay lit. The people huddled with their grudges in the darkness, listening to the hissing, howling, creaking, crashing, moaning, groaning, whistling wind.”
“At last, the wind sputtered, slowed, and stopped.”
“The squabbles were scrambled with quibbles. Low blows rested high up in the pile. High dudgeon had drifted down low. And the left-handed compliments had landed on the right-hand side.”
I thoroughly endorse this delightful book because it is beautifully done both from the story line and illustrations. They are a perfect match and truly make it easy for the reader to learn that keeping a grudge is simply not a good thing to do.

GIVEAWAY: The good folks at Peachtree Publishers have reserved a copy for one of Chat With Vera’s readers. Now all you have to do to try to win a copy is use the Rafflecopter form below. Begins April 2 & ENDS April 25 @ 12:01 a.m. EDT. Open to USA addresses only.
a Rafflecopter giveaway

DISCLOSURE: I received a complimentary copy of The Grudge Keeper from Peachtree Publisher in exchange for my honest review. Opinions expressed are solely my own and I received no compensation for this review.


  1. My son loves the Don't let the pigeon drive the bus book.

  2. I loved the book "The Red Balloon" about a French boy.

  3. My favorite book was "When You Give a Mouse a Cookie".

  4. My favorite child book was Skippy the little pink Puppy and I had a pink puppy that was given to me by a Navy Wave on our trip to Adak Alaska back in the early 50's - Loved that book and loved that dog.

  5. My oldest son loved Goodnight Moon. My two youngest 2 loved Green Eggs and Ham.

  6. Little Red Riding hood was my favorite. This book looks so cute!
    Sonja dot Nishimoto at gmail dot com

  7. One of my favorite childhood picture books - my mother reminded me - was The Cow Who Fell In The Canal. It was my first look at Holland!

    allibrary (at) aol (dot) com

  8. My sons love We're Going on a Bear Hunt right now. They have it all memorized!

  9. I loved the story of Ferdinand

  10. I have to say little one's fav picture books are the Elephant and Piggie series.. even now after switching to chapter books, she still will check for any new books from W. MO to make sure she hasn't missed any :)
    Thanks for sharing the giveaway on Kidlit Bloghop!
    -Reshama @Stackingbooks

  11. I loved Dr Suess "Green Eggs and Ham" and "Cinderella". What great books and I can think of more books that were just as great. Enjoyed your review. Thank you for the wonderful giveaway.
    Barbara Thompson

  12. The Serendipity books were my favorite pictures books. I can't remember which was my favorite of them.

  13. I really love The Gardener. Thanks so much for linking up to the Kid Lit Blog Hop! What a great picture book giveaway!

  14. I like your description of the illustrations. Seems like a wonderful book! Thanks for joining us at the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

  15. As a very young child, my favorite book was Runaway Bunny. I loved that every other page was in color!

  16. My favorite book was Weslandia.

  17. What a wonderful picture book that looks to be a new classic! I love the illustrations! Thanks for linking up to the Kid Lit Blog Hop!

  18. I loved the Beatrix Potter books. The illustrations were beautiful!!

  19. My daughter is here with me tonight, and she commented, "I want to read that book," after just seeing the cover. Kudos to the illustrator for sure! :) Thanks for sharing this at Booknificent Thursday!


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