Sarah's Stars

Kristin Butcher. The Gramma War
Orca, ISBN 1-55143-183-1  $8.95  168 pg.

Eleven-year-old Annie begins a war against her eighty-one-year-old Gramma the moment she moves into their house. Everything goes wrong - and it's all Gramma's fault! She's just a cranky, old smoker who always favours Annie's older sister. Or is she?

The story takes place in a present-day, suburban setting. Annie lives in a small house with her Mom, Dad and older sister, Claire. Now, because of Gramma, she has to share a room with her nasty, big sister. Between Gramma's smoking and demanding habits, Annie's life is awful, and she feels helpless until her mother and father enrol her in a group, where she's forced to dig up her ancestry.

The Gramma War is an excellent first book by Kristin Butcher. I liked the fact that I could relate.  Annie's anger was visible, I knew how I would feel if I were her.  The fact that I wanted to know how Annie's way of understanding her and her grandmother's lives kept me reading. This realistic fiction novel, about family relationships, will surely have an impact on readers aged nine to twelve. I give it a four-star rating.


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