July 3, 2014
The Grudge Keeper by Mara Rockliff, illustrated by Eliza Wheeler
The Grudge Keeper
by Mara Rockliff,
illustrated by Eliza Wheeler
In the town of Bonnyripple, no one worries about holding a grudge. Instead, whenever someone slights them or hurts them or just plain annoys them, they write their annoyance down and take it to the home of Cornelius, the town Grudge Keeper.
There, it is tucked into a drawer or a jar or tucked away on a shelf. The ramshackle cottage is bursting at the seams with accrimony because none of the grudges are every discarded.
Then came the day that the wind rose.
Although it starts out gently enough, soon it is rattling cupboards and shaking shutters. Toupees fly, inkpots are hurled and, predictably enough, chaos ensues. No one escapes unscathed so when the wind disapates they all head to the Grudge Keepers cottage, new grudges carefully recorded and clutched in their hands.
What they find, astounds them. Everything is topsy turvey and all mixed up. They shoulder past each other, each person searching for their own annoyances lest someone else get there first. Only when they hear a groan do they think to look for Cornelius.
I’m not going to tell you how the story ends because I don’t want to ruin the twist. To find that part out, you’ll have to read it for yourself!
Mara Rockliff pens a delightful story with a fairy tale feel. It is complimented perfectly by Eliza Wheeler’s pen and watercolor illustrations. She does a perfect job of making the characters comical and humorous instead of dark and serious which helps the story avoid becoming preachy although it definitely contains a lesson.
This is an excellent choice for the classroom and a great way to spark discussions on forgiveness.