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Our game-rich storybook app
Grandma's Great Gourd
is based on the award-winning picture book
Grandma and the Great Gourd: A Bengali Folktale
Retold by Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni
Illustrated by Susy Pilgrim Waters


      Praise

“This fresh new version will soon have young listeners and readers telling the story themselves.” —Kirkus Reviews

"Clever and crafty, this well-told tale will be a fun addition to most collections.” —School Library Journal

 

 

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“Evokes evokes oral tradition through use of pattern and onomatopoeia.” —Horn Book

"Grandma's witty resourcefulness and the opportunity to compare cross-cultural story traditions make this a useful resource and a good read aloud.” —Publishers Weekly


Meet the Author, Chitra Banerjee Divakaruni

" This was one of my favorite childhood stories. I also love this story (as a woman) because the hero is a clever grandmother, and in today's world when age is seen as a disadvantage, this is a good role model for children to see. In rewriting this story in English, I focused on Bengali onomatopoeic sounds (for example khut khut for elephants stomping in the forest). I also like the repetitive structure with the grandmother meeting one animal after another as she journeys through the dark forest."

" This was one of my favorite childhood stories. I also love this story (as a woman) because the hero is a clever grandmother, and in today's world when age is seen as a disadvantage, this is a good role model for children to see. In rewriting this story in English, I focused on Bengali onomatopoeic sounds (for example khut khut for elephants stomping in the forest). I also like the repetitive structure with the grandmother meeting one animal after another as she journeys through the dark forest."

Chitra is an award-winning and bestselling author, poet, activist, and teacher of writing. The story of Grandma and her gourd was one of her favorite stories when she was a child. Her grandfather used to tell it to her at bedtime! The version she created for her picture book was very similar, except that she created a closer relationship between Grandma and her dogs and added conversations between them to the story because she loves dogs! 

Chitra's work has been published in over 50 anthologies, including The Best American Short Stories, the O.Henry Prize Stories, and the Pushcart Prize Anthology. Her first middle grade novel in the Brotherhood of the Conch series, The Conch Bearer, was a Publishers Weekly Best Book of the Year, and a Booklist Editors' Choice. She currently lives in Texas.  

Visit her website at www.chitradivakaruni.com.

 

 

Meet the Illustrator, Susy Pilgrim Waters

"An avid reader, I was enamored immediately by the story as I am fascinated with India — the people, history, and culture. The story is charming and to me universal in content, a little bit Red Riding Hood, in another guise. I grew up outside of London where there was a Sikh community. We were surrounded by great Indian cuisine and shops, sometimes a wedding with all the music, color and gaiety that made the town of Gravesend look a little brighter. One day I will get to India, I hope! "

"An avid reader, I was enamored immediately by the story as I am fascinated with India — the people, history, and culture. The story is charming and to me universal in content, a little bit Red Riding Hood, in another guise. I grew up outside of London where there was a Sikh community. We were surrounded by great Indian cuisine and shops, sometimes a wedding with all the music, color and gaiety that made the town of Gravesend look a little brighter. One day I will get to India, I hope! "

Susy is a seasoned illustrator and artist who has drawn ever since she could hold a pencil. Always fascinated by layers of color, lines and emotions, she is happiest engrossed in her work. She grew up in England drawing on her rich family heritage in the arts: a distant relative Luke Howard who named the clouds, the Curtis's famous botanical illustrator, and her great grandfather William Curtis Green—a well known British architect—who built the Dorchester Hotel in London.

Susy has created two other book covers for Chitra, based in Indian culture. When she started working on the book, she researched Bengali traditional art such as alpona, South Asian fabrics, and colors to come up with sketches of Grandma, the forest animals, and Grandma's world. 

She lives in Boston with her husband, Keith, their dog Tillie, two cats, and two bunnies. 

Visit her website at www.pilgrimwatersdesign.com.