Review: Old to Joy by Anita Crawford Clark

Posted January 25, 2024 by Richetta in Book Reviews, Children's Books / 1 Comment

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Review: Old to Joy by Anita Crawford Clark

I received this book for free from Multicultural Children's Book Day in exchange for an honest review. This does not affect my opinion of the book or the content of my review.

This post contains affiliate links you can use to purchase the book. If you buy the book using that link, I will receive a small commission from the sale.

Review: Old to Joy by Anita Crawford ClarkOld to Joy by Anita Crawford Clark
Published by Gnome Road Publishing on September 5, 2023
Genres: Juvenile Fiction / Family / Multigenerational, JUVENILE FICTION / General, Juvenile Fiction / Girls & Women, Juvenile Fiction / People & Places / United States / African American & Black, JUVENILE FICTION / Social Themes / Values & Virtues
Pages: 32
Format: Hardcover
Source: Multicultural Children's Book Day
Buy on Bookshop

Joy's Grandmama lives in an old house, on an old street, with old trees and all kinds of old things. And Joy already knows . . . there's no fun in that!

When young Joy goes to spend the day with Grandmama, she struggles to find beauty in all the old things at Grandmama's house. None of it looks or smells quite the same as it does at home. But as the day passes, Grandmama patiently helps Joy discover how the old ways can bring joy to any heart. Whether it's the swaying of stately trees, bubbles dancing in a sink filled with dishes, the sweet scents of a lovingly tended garden, or the memories found in a room packed with hats - if Joy open's her heart and mind, there is beauty to be found everywhere at Grandmama's house.

Gorgeous, richly detailed illustrations capture the movement of Joy's feelings of boredom and doubt to awe and appreciation for her Grandmama's attitude and way of life. Debut author-illustrator Anita Crawford Clark celebrates her African American lived experience and family heritage in this intergenerational story that is certain to encourage a healthy-aging mindset among readers of all ages and add a spark of joy to any home, classroom, or library setting. A perfect gift for grandparents and grandchildren alike!

I’m back celebrating my third year as a Multicultural Children’s Book Day reviewer! I’m excited to share my thoughts on Old to Joy by Anita Crawford Clark. Be sure to check out the details after this review for ways you can participate in Multicultural Children’s Book Day and attend the celebration Thursday, Jan. 25 at 9pm EST.

Visiting Grandmama’s House

The title Old to Joy mirrors the title of the famous musical piece “Ode to Joy” by Beethoven laying a musical foundation to the beautiful language in the book. Main character, young Joy, is visiting her grandmother. She finds that her grandmother has a lot of old furniture and ways of doing things that she is not familiar with. Joy questions her grandmother about these things and her grandmother patiently explains why the items have meaning and the practices have importance.

Celebrating Old Things in a New Gadget World

Old to Joy is a story about a relationship between a grandmother and grandchild. It’s about traditions passed down through love, sharing and being together. This is especially meaningful in a world full of gadgets and new material things that supposedly make life easier and easier. Children who have tablets and computers and phones in front of them to entertain them might relate to Joy in her questioning of why her grandmother has so many old things.

Encouraging Curiosity

This is a great opportunity to talk to children about traditions, the importance of celebrating what is old, reliable and joyful about life. Joy is full of youthful curiosity and questions and through her questions she experiences her grandmother’s wisdom and peace.

Building Relationships

My favorite part is Grandmama’s hat room! What a great bonding experience as she shared her collection with Joy. This is an awesome celebration of grandparent relationships in our family life. It is also a celebration in finding joy in old things and creating meaning for newer generations that encounter them.

Whether you are celebrating Grandparent’s Day, encouraging children to appreciate traditions and older things in their lives or just embracing curiosity, this is a great read aloud for kids.

Old to Joy Book Cover

Check out my reviews for MCBD from last year: Review: In The Nick of Time Too , A New Take on the ABCs with Formula <em>1™</em> Racing

Learn More

Multicultural Children’s Book Day 2024 (1/25/25) is in its 11th year! Valarie Budayr and Mia Wenjen founded this non-profit children’s literacy initiative; they are two diverse book-loving moms who saw a need to shine the spotlight on all of the multicultural diverse books and authors on the market while also working to get those books into the hands of young readers and educators.

Read Your World’s mission is to raise awareness of the need to include kids’ books celebrating diversity in homes and school bookshelves. Read about our Mission and history HERE.

Read Your World celebrates Multicultural Children’s Book Day and is honored to be Supported by these Medallion and Ruby Sponsors!

FOUNDER’S CIRCLE: Mia Wenjen (Pragmaticmom) and Valarie Budayr (

🏅 Super Platinum Sponsor: Author Deedee Cummings and Make A Way Media

🏅 Platinum Sponsors: Publisher Spotlight, Language Lizard Bilingual Books in 50+ Languages, Lerner Publishing Group

🏅 Gold Sponsors:  Barefoot Books, Astra Books for Young Readers

🏅 Silver Sponsors: Red Comet Press, Eerdmans Books for Young Readers, Valerie Williams-Sanchez and Valorena Publishing, Lee and Low Books, Cardinal Rule Press

🏅 Bronze Sponsors: CK Malone, Tonya Duncan Ellis, Anita Crawford Clark, Star Bright Books, Blue Dot Kids Press, Brunella Costagliola, Red Fin, Fabled Films 

Ruby Sponsor: Crayola 

Poster Artist:  Rebecca Burgess 

Classroom Kit Poster: Barefoot Books 

MCBD 2024 is honored to be Supported by these Author Sponsors!

Authors: Gwen Jackson, Josh Funk, Eugenia Chu, Sivan Hong, Marta Magellan, Kathleen Burkinshaw, Angela H. Dale, Maritza M Mejia, Authors J.C. Kato and J.C.², Charnaie Gordon,  Alva Sachs, Amanda Hsiung-Blodgett, Lisa Chong, Diana Huang, Martha Seif Simpson, DARIA (WORLD MUSIC WITH DARIA) Daria Marmaluk-Hajioannou, Gea Meijering, Stephanie M. Wildman, Tracey Kyle, Afsaneh Moradian, Kim C. Lee, Rochelle Melander, Beth Ruffin, Shifa Saltagi Safadi, Alina Chau, Michael Genhart, Sally J. Pla, Ajuan Mance, Kimberly Marcus, Lindsey Rowe Parker

MCBD 2024 is Honored to be Supported by our CoHosts and Global CoHosts!

MCBD 2023 is Honored to be Supported by our Partner Organizations! 

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📌 FREE RESOURCES from Multicultural Children’s Book Day

📌 Register for the MCBD Read Your World Virtual Party

Join us on Thursday, January 25, 2024, at 9 pm EST celebrating more than 10 years of  Multicultural Children’s Book Day Read Your World Virtual Party! Register here

This epically fun and fast-paced hour includes multicultural book discussions, addressing timely issues, diverse book recommendations, & reading ideas.

We will be giving away a 10-Book Bundle during the virtual party plus Bonus Prizes as well! *** US and Global participants welcome. **

Follow the hashtag #ReadYourWorld to join the conversation, and connect with like-minded parts, authors, publishers, educators, organizations, and librarians. We look forward to seeing you all on January 25, 2024, at our virtual party!

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One response to “Review: Old to Joy by Anita Crawford Clark

  1. anelenterprises

    Thank you for participating in Multicultural Children’s Book Day #ReadYourWorld 2024! We appreciate your review.

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