Book Review: Now One Foot, Now The Other

Rating: ★★★★★

Bobby has grown into mastery of basic motor skills under the loving supervision of his grandfather, affectionately named Bob. But one day he is terrified when Bob suffers a stroke and is fully paralyzed.  Everyone thinks Bob is unable to understand what is happening around him, but Bobby insists that his grandfather is responding to him.  Slowly and persistently,  he helps Bob regain motor control, leading him through all the same exercises that Bob used to help him gain coordination as a young child until he is able to communicate and get around under his own power.

The story is simply, carefully told so that young children can understand it, but all readers will grasp the profound implications of Bob’s disability.  Bobby (who is not a perfect child) models what it means to take care of others — even those who may have always taken the helping role toward him.  While sometimes frightening, the story’s drama may help young children come to terms with the limitations of people in their lives and teaches them that they can have an important helping role.  In the midst of fear and weakness, this picture of tender intergenerational love is very beautiful.

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Publication Information: de Paola, Tomie. Now One Foot, Now the Other. Putnam. 1981. ISBN: 0142401048.
Categories: 5 Stars, Age 04-08, Books Children Love, Honey For a Child's Heart, World Nifty 50
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Posted on April 2, 2010

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