Raising Grandkids focuses on “skipped generation” families or grandparent-headed households. Collecting together stories from other grandparents and reflecting on his own experience as a caregiver to his step-grandchildren, Gary Garrison paints a compassionate yet compelling picture of the joys, fears, and passions that drive some grandparents to put their later lives on hold to raise their children’s children.
Grandparents in this situation have particular challenges, as they often have to battle their own children for custody, deal with pressures from caseworkers, negotiate their own health and financial issues, and address the guilt and resentment they may feel towards the missing son or daughter who conceived the children now in their care. As well, many fear their grandchildren will be taken away, which keeps them silent and isolated. This fear can be particularly profound for Indigenous and Metis grandparents, who bear intergenerational wounds of racism and genocide, as they struggle to create a better future for themselves and their grandchildren. No matter their background, grandparents looking for comfort, guidance, and wisdom will find meaning in this brave and clear-eyed book.
Gary Garrison is the author of Human on the Inside: Unlocking the Truth about Canadian Prisons, holds a PhD. in English from the University of Alberta, and was Editor of Alberta Hansard. He lives in Edmonton.
General Sales Info
We'll market this as "Chicken Soup for the Soul" with a child welfare/social work edge (stats, list of resources). With case studies and personal anecdotes, it's a fantastic book for grandparents who feel alone in the gargantuan task of raising their children's children. Most comparable books are fairly dry and academic; this is based in real, personal stories. Raising Grandkids is also an excellent and accessible resource for social workers who work with this group. Issues of addiction, alcoholism, and FASD are addressed. The book also contains reflections on Indigenous (Native American) grandparents, who often take on the parenting role for grandchildren, and have to negotiate additional challenges with respect to racism and the underfunding or exploitation from child welfare. * Note on author: Gary Garrison came to Canada from the U.S. as a Vietnam war resister, so has American roots and an activist/human rights background.
Publicity and Ad Plans
-Media campaign around National Grandparents Day (Sept 9, 2018) with profiles pitched to Publishers Weekly, Chatelaine, The Walrus, Library Journal, Christian Science Monitor, Atlantic Magazine, and parenting sections/columns in HuffPost, rabble.ca, iPolitics, and an extensive list of parenting blogs.
-Ads in Library Journal, Foreword Reviews, Publishers Weekly, Literary Review of Canada
-Direct marketing campaign to social work/alternative parenting/foster care support groups in the U.S. and Canada
For more information contact
"Garrison imbues honesty and compassion into his writing, comforting those in similar situations." Library Journal
"Raising Grandkids is an empathetic and knowledgeable book that shows grandparents they're not alone in the challenges they face while raising their grandchildren." Foreword Reviews