A Tsunami Called Naani
Ramendra Kumar
age group: 
7+ yrs
Number of pages: 
DC Mango
family grandparents humour


Fast-paced, heartwarming and a fun story of a gumptious grandmother who lands into Aunraag’s life and like a tsunami, sweeps away all his misconceptions of what a grandmother should be like.

Somehow Anuraag’s parents were obsessed with money. They counted money in the bank where they worked during the day, and even for the rest of the time, money was foremost on their minds. Even love, affection, kindness and time was weighed against it. So much so, that when the grandmother came to stay with them, Sudha, his mother, could only solace Anuraag, whose room she was going to share, with, “And if we treat her properly she will leave all her property to us.” Financial security was their mantra and for that the kids had to study, study, study!

And then, Naani entered their lives. She was a plucky and yet wise new-age grandmother although old in age, she was young at heart and could easily empathise with the young as well as the old. Life before Naani had been dull - all work and no play. But now, each day brought new surprises and fun. Soon, Anuraag and his friends were completed bowled over.

The story revolves around the almost rat-race situations in the lives of kids today. School followed by tuitions, followed by TV, followed by dinner and some more studies, until bedtime. Naani was a staunch believer in the merits of play and sports for all round development of a child so whilst encouraging her grandson and his friends to study hard, she also encouraged them to read, play games, participate in sports and make new friends - both young and old.

As, the plot thickens, Naani gets involved in supporting a talented bunch of differently abled children to participate in a talent competition. But it is a humongous task. Would it be possible to put together a production that could withstand stiff national competition? Where would the finances come from? Had she bitten off more than she can chew or would she be able achieve the impossible?

The story subtly imparts lessons to kids on respecting the elderly, sharing, caring and getting involved in situations where they can make a difference.

Whilst the book has a few shortcomings and a very predictable ending, overall it is sensitively written and will be welcome addition to any school or home library.

In fact, one can say that it is a must read not only for children with grandmothers, but also for grandmothers with grandkids and also the new-age helicopter parents who unceasingly goad their children (to their detriment) for getting grades, certificates and prizes. 

Reviewed by Shamim Padamsee


I was inspired by this book to write a short paragraph on my grandmother. I won the prize and got an author signed copy of Against all Odds. This book is a good book. The events move very fast. It tells us about the way differently abled people are underestimated by society but can be unexpected champions. We are all prejudiced about small towns but the book teaches us to be open minded. It also encourages girls to dance modern dance and not restrict to classical forms.

This books is very interesting, which encouraged me to write about my grandmother for the competition. I just read the message that I have won the prize but am yet to receieve it. Can someone help me with that. Contact drsnehalsingh@gmail.com

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