Review by Meygan
Delia looks up to Mr. Clancy, aka “Old Red”, the way a granddaughter would a grandfather. Mr. Clancy is a gardener, and he has taught Delia to become one as well. They sell and plant seeds together, and their friendship blossoms just like their flowers. Mr. Clancy is Delia’s best friend, and she can’t imagine anything coming in between them until one day, Delia notices a change in Mr. Clancy. He is becoming more forgetful, more irritable, and has a difficult time remembering people’s names. His memory eventually takes a turn for the worse, and he has to reside inside a nursing home. Delia has the brilliant idea to write down Mr. Clancy’s story that way if he ever wants to remember a memory, all he has to do is read his story that Delia has written for him. Will Delia be able to help Mr. Clancy remember who he once was?
It seems there have been a number of children’s books taking on important subjects. This one does an excellent job of taking on Alzheimer’s and Dementia. To my knowledge, there aren’t many children’s books about those subjects, so it would be interesting to see what children think about Mr. Clancy after reading the book. I would also like to see this book used in a classroom or school library to teach young children about Alzheimer’s and Dementia, but I also think many parents would find it useful to explain this difficult topic.
However, I don’t think it should be considered a book just for children. I found it to be so well written and meaningful that I would recommend it to anyone. I am in my mid-twenties but it moved me to tears. I cannot give enough praise to this author for her piece of work. The whole story had the feel of truth. I learned that the author’s grandfather had dementia, which motivated her to write the book. My grandmother has dementia, so perhaps that is why I felt so connected to Mr. Clancy.
The story is heart touching and will leave an impression on readers. I thought that the characters were very well-developed and realistic. The writing style reminded me of Harper Lee’s in To Kill a Mockingbird. I enjoyed the way Ms. Wiersbitzky added touches of humor to such a heart wrenching story. I could almost see the story unfold, so I would love for a movie adaptation to come from this novel.
In short, I highly recommend What Flowers Remember!