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Reviewed by Kristine Zimmerman for Readers' Favorite
Granddad Teaches Des to Ride is a story about 5-year-old Des and his first two-wheel bike. His grandparents surprise him with a brand-new bike and all the safety gear that goes with it. Des is very excited to try it out. The first step is to practice with training wheels. Des jumps on his bike and gets the hang of it quickly. His granddad tells him it's time to take off the training wheels and learn how to balance the bike himself. He and his granddad practice riding. Des has some failures and falls. Des becomes discouraged and feels like giving up but, with his granddad's gentle persuasion, he gives it another try. Soon Des is riding with confidence and enjoying a newfound skill!
Daniel J. Patrick's first book is a winner. Granddad Teaches Des to Ride shares the joys and frustrations of a familiar childhood rite of passage. It was wonderful to see the bond between granddad and grandson. Des's granddad displays the patience and coaching that Des needs to be able to succeed. The colorful illustrations by AnnaSib enhance the story. I really enjoyed the picture of the bike morphing into a monster, highlighting how Des felt about it after falling. Patrick's message about never giving up, despite how many times you fall or fail, is an important one for kids to learn. Granddad Teaches Des to Ride will be enjoyed by all kids, those just learning to ride a bike and those who have already conquered bike riding.