Beth and Chrissi do Kid-Lit: Gangsta Granny

Gangsta Granny

How did I get it?:
I bought it!


Ben is bored beyond belief after he is made to stay at his grandma’s house. All she wants to do is to play Scrabble, and eat cabbage soup. But there are two things Ben doesn’t know about his grandma: she was once an international jewel thief and she has been plotting to steal the crown jewels. Now she needs Ben’s help.


Gangsta Granny was my first experience of reading a book by David Walliams. I know I wanted to read a book by him, as his books are so popular in primary school. Gangsta Granny does have a suggested age range on it (9+) but I think it’s suitable for strong readers and teachers/parents to read to a child. There are a few sentences (e.g. a reference to Nuts Magazine) that will likely go over most children’s heads, so I don’t see it as an issue at all.

Gangsta Granny is a funny book which focuses on an eleven year old boy called Ben and his relationship with his Granny. Ben often has to stay at his Granny’s house, whilst his parents go out, usually to watch a popular dancing show that they’re obsessed with. Ben thinks his Granny is boring. She smells of cabbage and plays board games that Ben really doesn’t want to play. Ben finds out that Granny has a secret, which makes her much less boring! They start to bond over her secret, as Ben sees his Granny in a new light.

I can totally see why children love reading David Walliams. The book was very funny, well written, had interesting illustrations and would totally engage even the most reluctant of readers. From a teacher’s perspective (really weird that I can say that now) I think children would lap this up. There’s so much that could be done with this book in the classroom. It would inspire creative writing, that’s for sure. I also really appreciated how it dealt with loss in such a sensitive manner.

I shall be definitely reading more from David Walliams in the future.

For Beth’s review, check out her blog HERE

Would I recommend it?:
Of course!

Next up in Beth and Chrissi Do Kid-Lit Challenge (August)
The Graveyard Book- Neil Gaiman

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