Hot, Hot Roti for Dada-ji

By MadiganReads

Acrylic and colored pencil illustrations with razor sharp edges almost look like collage. There’s some great variety in the layout of the brightly colored full-bleed pages… some of them are comic book style and there are a few two-page spreads. Min does a fantastic job of getting grandfather’s rascally personality across in his facial expressions, both as a young man in India, and as a grandfather in present day. I liked the symmetry as the grandfather’s exploits: making the earth shake (a boy pulling a plow in a field is pictured), shaking the giant mango tree, and touching the sky with his feet (he climbs a palm tree, much to the consternation of the village) are echoed by his American grandson who stomps in the yard, shakes apples from a tree, and touches his feet to the sky on his swingset. Make no mistake, this is a lengthy picture book, meant for older children. Still, the repeating refrain of the villagers, “Arre wah! Wah! Wah!” at Dada-ji’s feats of skill makes for a fun read-aloud refrain.