Granddaughter Necklace.jpg

The Granddaughter Necklace

Written by Sharon Dennis Wyeth

Illustrated by Bagram Ibatoulline

An uplifting tale of love, kinship, and gifts, passed down through generations.

There are moments in each person's life that we take great care to remember: the pride of a young girl standing up for herself for the first time; the heartbreak of leaving one's country and family for a new beginning; the thrill of getting ready for the piano recital of a lifetime.

In Sharon Dennis Wyeth's family these moments were marked with the passing on of the Granddaughter Necklace: not a fancy piece of jewelry, but a precious one, worn smooth by the touch of mothers and grandmothers, each with her own story to tell.

With a historical sweep that reaches back to Ireland and to Africa, and an intimacy that resides in every family's treasured stories, Wyeth tells the tale of one family's journey from the old world to the new, from the past to the present, and from mother to daughter.

Here's a book that we feel will be passed on from generation to generation too, read in laps and in groups, opening conversations about our own necklaces of memory.

Reviews and Awards

“Drawing on family history, Wyeth exalts intergenerational bonds and the heirloom that symbolizes them…. The story’s play with temporal space distinguishes the narrative, and Ibatoulline’s acryl-gouache paintings present ornate depictions of domestic scenes and stunning landscapes… A lovely family tribute.” - Kirkus Reviews

“Few of today’s children can trace their ancestry back more than a generation or two. But this inspiring first-person account of a crystal necklace handed down from granddaughter to granddaughter across four generations may spark their interest. The story begins with a contemporary girl and works backward until it reaches Frances, an Irish girl who came to America and married a farmer. The acrylic gouache illustrations are idealized yet realistic, and glow with rich colors of sunset skies and warm kitchens. Wyeth details in her author’s note how the oral tradition in her own family inspired the tale, right down to her joint African/Irish heritage. Though classified as fiction, the book is clearly a personal journey, capturing individual moments that connect a family of women over the years, enlivened with images of grace, depth, and emotion.” - Booklist

"This quiet, thoughtful book will undoubtedly serve as an opening to a special conversation about family roots…. Although the profiles are brief, they are rich, incorporating a range of life experiences and, quite wonderfully, the blending of different ethnicities within the family. Ibatoulline’s lovely, detailed illustrations have a warm glow…. [S]hared in a family-themed storytime or as a jumping-off point for a discussion about ancestry, it will definitely inspire youngsters to think about their own family trees." - School Library Journal  

Purchase Options
Indiebound • Amazon • Barnes & Noble

Spring 2013
Picture Book
ISBN: 978-0-545-08125-2
Price: $16.99/$18.99
Trim Size: 10" x 10"
Page Count: 32
Foreign Rights: Scholastic
Translation Rights: Scholastic
Rights Available? yes

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