Tell me a story, Babushka Author Carola Schmidt Illustrator Anita Barghigiani

Book Review

5 out of 5 stars!

This is a picture book story with a targeted audience being ages five to eight years old. Honestly, my first picture book review for young audiences.

"Would you like a story about a princess, Karina?"

"Maybe one of those stories about a princess and monsters, Baba."

Karina asks her Baba (Grandmother), to tell her a story. Little does young Karina know that the story is about Baba's childhood. Baba had to survive through the Holodomer, but tells the story using creative interpretation so as to not frighten young Karina. The story does contain everything Karina wanted and just a little more. With a happily ever after that will have you smiling and more than likely a child begging for you to read the book again!

I had to do a quick little history lesson because I couldn't fully remember what Holodomer meant or what it was. Holodomer was the man-made famine in Soviet Ukraine from year 1932 to 1933. Millions of people lost their lives to mass starvation! The author does a great job mentioning the tragedies and hardships of what happened but didn't go into detail because of the target audience for this book.

There are some holes within the story that Baba tells, but I had to stop and think things through. With the mind of a child, you aren't focused on all the little details. Karina would have been and was more focused on the little princess. Wondering how the little princess got out of the situation she was placed into.

As an adult you notice the missing parts of the story. I can honestly fill in the gaps with my own mind as to what happens in those parts. Baba's helping Karina understand history but knows she isn't ready for certain aspects, age-appropriateness.

For a children's book this was a very good read. There are mention of some darker things, death, monsters wanting to kill, and no food. However, the author knows her audience and just says the words but never places any details around them. Implying things within the story so adults can read and understand but children will be more focused on the Princess.

The artwork is beautiful and has such a unique appearance. Feels really authentic to the story and the depictions of things. I love the color palettes the artist used and the contrast of colors. The brighter, vibrant colors to surround Baba and Karina, while using darker colors to signify what the Princess has to go through. Loved the significance of color with the little light of hope from a certain object that helps the Princess out!

There were words in Ukranian but the author either translated them at the beginning or Baba, explained the translation within the story. The author did an excellent job, and I am glad I was able to read this book.

I hope I didn't give too much away with the story since it is extremely short. Again, this is my first time reviewing a children's picture book.

Enjoy the story and I believe your child will love the tale of the Princess and the monsters. Don't forget to give the author some stars!

Tell Me A Story Babushka: Carola Schmidt, Anita Barghigiani: 9781478875819: Books

Tell me a Story, Babushka – CAROLA SCHMIDT (

Carola Schmidt (@_CarolaSchmidt) / Twitter


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