When Gregory wakes up on his first day in Tobago with his grandparents, his heart sinks. The food is strange, the sun too hot, his cousin Lennox is on another wave length, and there are none of the televisions, video games and other high-tech gadgets that a cool city-boy takes for granted. How Gregory adjusts to the strange culture, and learns to enjoy the lifestyle of the Caribbean is enchantingly told and illustrated by award-winning author Caroline Binch.
Caroline Binch's illustrations for Hue Boy, written by Rita Phillips Mitchell, won the smarties Prize. She is perhaps best known for Amazing Grace and Grace & Family. Gregory Cool, which she wrote and illustrated, was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal. It was followed by Since Dad Left, which won the United Kingdom Book Award in 1998, New Born, written by Kathy Henderson and Starring Grace, by Mary Hoffman.
“Gregory, you just like your photos,” cried Granny.
“It’s your Granny got to kiss you at last, an’ here’s your Grandpa!”
“My, we so pleased to have you home,” Grandpa said.
Sitting in the taxi from the airport, squashed tightly between his grandparents, Gregory wished he was back home with his mum and dad. Why did he have to come to Tobago?
The air was stifling and the strange smells disturbed him. Gregory shut his eyes. All of a sudden he felt very tired.
The taxi stopped outside a very small house.
“Do you really live here?” asked Gregory. Granny and Grandpa just laughed as they took him inside and showed him his room.
The last he saw before he fell asleep was a lizard looking down at him from the ceiling.
Gregory woke up next morning with just a sheet over him. It was hot! Sun poured in through the open window. There were no toys, no books, no carpet – not even a proper door. Gregory scratched at his arm. Something had bitten him during the night. Was he really expected to stay here for four weeks?
In the kitchen, Granny was cooking breakfast and Grandpa sat at a small table with a boy Gregory hadn’t seen before. This must be his cousin. His mum had told him about Lennox, and how he loved with Granny and Grandpa.
“Good morning, Gregory!”
They all smiled at him.
“Come and have some food, boy, then Lennox will show you around,” said Granny.