Children enjoy doing ‘grown-up’ work. And when that adult is more of a friend, the bonding they share with them is magical. Grandparents are a boon to a child and vice versa. With grandpa, there’s always something new to learn, stories to be heard and most of all, unconditional love shared.

About The Book

Grandpa and Ray

‘Tiny Tales from Heart’ is a series of books that teaches children values in life that matter most. Written in British English by Vidya Muralidaran and illustrated by Sharon Dev, ‘The Adventures of Grandpa and Ray‘ is the first book of this series.

I see this book as one big poem, with so much information put forward in a nonlinear narrative style. I’m at awe with how easily the author could prance through the scenes. This book could be personified as a grandparent as it creates more conversational starters and topics for discussion with each line, just like how grandparents have a lifetime of experiences to share with.

The illustrations are refreshing transporting the readers a step closer to nature. I was able to introduce ‘then-and-now’ concepts, and to help my kid compare the activities of Ray to his own, and also to share stories of my childhood and my grandpa too.

I’m sure this book is a great find for those who are looking for the prefect grandpa-grandchild book.

About the Author

The Author of the book ‘The Adventures of Grandpa and Ray’, Vidya is a mother of two, an author and a blogger. Her blog is mommyhooddiary.wordpress.com. Her articles have been published in ‘Chicken Soup for the Soul’ , ‘Life Positive’ and she is also planning to  contribute to a parenting site called ‘Perfection Pending.’ IMC spoke with Vidya regarding her inspirations for the book and more about her works and ideas. Here are some excerpts of the chat. Thank you Vidya for sharing these ideas with us!

What inspired you to seed ‘Tiny Tales from the heart’ series?

‘Tiny tales from the heart’ is a series of illustrated poetry books. The poems were written to highlight to my children the simple joys of life and give them a perspective on what truly matters – heart to heart connections with your own self and the people you love. The seed to create the poems into a picture book series was sown when I read out my work at a local writer’s group. A fellow writer suggested the poems would make great picture books.

 What are the other books in the series?

The second book in the series is a story of a princess and how she discovers the true meaning of beauty. It sends a message to all young girls that to feel beautiful, one does not have to look or dress a certain way or have a certain skin tone. They just need to tap into the spark within to realize each of them is unique.
Book three is about true friendships and is based on the bond I share with my childhood friends. The magic of childhood friendships is depicted through the story of five monkeys.
Book four is about accepting and loving people who are very different from you.

All the activities in the book describe nature. Do you feel the need for kids to enjoy nature?

Being outdoors gives me a deep sense of peace and makes me feel grounded. Most days I am living off an agenda, constantly trying to finish something on a to-do list. At such times, seeing a rose in full bloom or watching the leaves change color or listening to the sound of waves by the sea shore sends me a constant reminder that there is a power much bigger than me at work. Kids these days are as busy and stressed as adults. I think being in nature is what they need to slow down and enjoy life.

According to you what is the importance/role of a grandparent in the life of a child?

Grandparents have the wisdom to see life for what it truly is – a joyful experience. They understand that eventually everything works out. As parents, we are so busy trying to perfect our children, we sometimes tend to focus on aspects that don’t matter much in the long run. We get anxious and are bogged down by the responsibility and tend to then have unrealistic expectations of the child. Having a grandparent around takes this serious edge off parenting and adds an element of fun. They lighten the atmosphere at home. Grandparents usually have the perfect balance of discipline and a zest for life making them wonderful role models for children.

Could you share some of your personal experiences with your grandparent and how it shaped your life?

I am fortunate that I experienced the love of my grandparents for many years of my life. I was closest to my paternal grandmother who lived up to the age of ninety-two. What amazed me was her ability to change with the times. I remember one day she didn’t quite find a Tamil magazine to read so she borrowed my comics and even enjoyed them. She was a lovely blend of traditional and modern ways. She cared deeply for all in her family and made each of us feel special. Not once did I hear her complain about any of the difficult times she had to face. She radiated an inner strength that made me feel safe and protected when I was around her. An epitome of love who held her family together was how I saw her and how I always hope to be.

The illustrations gave more life to the book. How was it working with the illustrator Sharon?

I can only describe the experience as brilliant. Sharon and I are bosom pals. We had a lot of crazy and fun times growing up. Doing the book together helped us relive those moments. Sharon is an excellent artist and this is the first book she has illustrated yet she knew exactly what had to be done. What was so beautiful about the whole experience was I did not have to tell her what I wanted. She just knew. I cried when I saw her first draft. The words of the poem had come alive. This is a maiden venture for both of us and the journey has taught us so much. The respect and love we have had for each other has only deepened. I could not have asked for a better partner in crime.

We loved the non-linear structure of the book, the content in the form of rhymes. I was truly satisfied as a reader and a parent. Is there an inspiration for your writing style? What is your advice to budding writers?

My advice to all budding writers would be to write about what they feel strongly for so the words flow from the heart. Often writers try to alter their style to fit into a publisher’s mold to write what sells. The only way for upcoming writers to find their niche is to be true to their self. Faith and patience is what is needed as the journey to publishing can be a long, arduous one.

And here is your chance to win this book- Hard copy in the US and an E version around the world – Enter now!

The Adventures of Grandpa and Ray – Book Giveaway

The Adventures of Grandpa and Ray | E-book Giveaway

A Note from the Author – The hard copy also has a few activities for grandparents to do with their grandchildren which is not in the E-book!

Featured Image Source: Amazon

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