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Leave Me Alone!

4.22  ·  Rating details ·  3,012 ratings  ·  757 reviews
An epic tale about one grandmother, a giant sack of yarn, and her ultimate quest to finish her knitting.

One day, a grandmother shouts, "LEAVE ME ALONE!" and leaves her tiny home and her very big family to journey to the moon and beyond to find peace and quiet to finish her knitting. Along the way, she encounters ravenous bears, obnoxious goats, and even hordes of aliens! B
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 13th 2016 by Roaring Brook Press
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4.22  · 
Rating details
 ·  3,012 ratings  ·  757 reviews

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Aug 05, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Knitting. It shouldn’t be so hard. I say this as the grown daughter of a chronic knitterer (not a word). I grew up neck deep in roving. I know the difference between a gossip wheel and a walking wheel (these are different spinning wheels). I know that if you want a permanent non-toxic dye for wool you use Kool-aid, that wool straight from the sheep is incredibly oily, and that out there are people who have turned the fur of their dogs and cats into sweaters. Yet the simplest act of knitting is l ...more
Mar 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
Leave me Alone! by Vera Brosgol is a children's picture book about a granny who just can't seem to get away from everything so she can finish her knitting. She encounters everything from noisy grandchildren to aliens in this cute story.

We enjoyed the illustrations and the granny's consistent attempts to get away. It has a good ending that's kids enjoy.

This is a 2017 Caldecott honorable mention. To see award information please visit our blog

May 13, 2018 rated it really liked it
Have you ever been so fed up with all the noise around you that you had to climb a mountain to get away from it all? Yeah, me too. All the time in fact.

I enjoyed this little story about a grandma with about 30 little grandchildren. It would be like a school every day - Crazy. She had all this knitting to do as well. It wasn't going to happen in that house. She takes off for the woods and the mountains and beyond. I loved the surprises and the ending. I probably wouldn't have read this by the ti
David Schaafsma
Jul 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
Vera Bristol wrote Anya's Ghost, a YA/tween graphic novel I really liked. Leave Me Alone! is maybe even more original, in a sense. It's a picture book with a focus on a Russian-American grandma being driven crazy by all the kids in her house. She has knitting to do, and insist they LEAVE ME ALONE! The places she goes to try and escape get increasingly crazy, especially when she escapes through a wormhole! I did not see that one coming. Twists and turns and a pleasing ending. Caldecott Honor Book ...more
A both humorously entertaining and also rather reality-imbued, thought-provoking little anecdote (especially for those of us who tend to be a bit introverted and often crave peace and quiet, who sometimes even much require the need for no or at least very little external stimulation and distraction), Vera Brosgol's Leave Me Alone shows the lengths to which a frustrated grandmother with a very small house and a very large family must go in order to finally get enough silent and personal "me" time ...more
Dec 15, 2016 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture
The world is full of goddamn knitblockers.
The Moon, likewise.
What's an old lady gotta do to get some peace around here?
Granny can’t get any peace at home, so she goes to the forest where the bears bother her so she goes to the mountains where the goats bother her so she goes to the moon where little green men bother her. Finally, she finds a wormhole and she gets her stuff done.

This is my life, people. Well, minus the plethora of children. I have a chatty husband and four needy animals, instead, so close enough.
All she wants is some peace and quiet so that she can finish her knitting! Is that too much to ask?

I feel this grandmother on a deep level.
Christie Angleton
A love letter to introverts everywhere.
Jul 03, 2017 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book! I probably would have passed it by as the cover didn't appeal to me at all but I read it as part of the Children's Book Group's summer reading of the ALA Notable Picture Books of 2017 and I'm so glad I did. It really struck a chord with me. I probably wouldn't have found it nearly so humorous and spot-on before I became a mom (though, as an introvert, I've always valued some solitude) but now I so empathized with the grandma in just wanting to get a few uninterrupted moments t ...more
Jul 03, 2017 rated it liked it
I've been looking forward to reading this. Sometimes I wish I had grandchildren, but I know I'd go nuts if I had to live with a bunch of 'em.

So, I'm reading it, enjoying it, until the line "bears don't speak English." I really wish it read "speak human" or "speak people," even. Oh well. The rest of the story was fine. I did predict the ending, though, so it wasn't special to me but rather a bit trivial. And I did get a kick out of seeing just how far she had to leave to get truly alone....
Edward Sullivan
Jan 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Even grandmothers need some alone time. Quite clever and great fun.
La Tonya  Jordan
Dec 29, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Everyone
Recommended to La Tonya by: Myself
Shelves: good-read
This is a spin of the nusery rhyme "Old Woman Who Lived In a Shoe. She Had So Many Children. She Did Not Know What To Do." Instead this is the grandmother who lived in a small village, in a small house, with a very big family who had some very important knitting to do before winter. But, it wasn't getting done. She shoulted "LEAVE ME ALONE!". She leaves for the forest, mountains, moon, and the void on the other side of the wormhole. The void on the other side of the wormhole was very dark and ve ...more
Jun 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: e
Love that this one takes your expectations for a picture book and levels it up.
I love twists in my stories, as a rule.

Wish the illustrations were a little larger scale, but that's only because I took this out on school visits, and it was really too small for some of the larger groups I talked to.

Appreciated all the repetition, and loved having 100 kindergarteners yell "Leave Me Alone" with me over and over. Felt very empowering to practice that phrase with them. ;)

When you're frustrated, do yo
Apr 07, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
A book about finding peace and quiet so you can get your knitting done? Complete with mountain goats and interdimensional travel? Yes, please.

High praise for the illustrations as well. This one's the complete package.
You may know Vera Brosgol from the graphic novel Anya's Ghost. Her first picture book is a winner all around - it's got a folktale feel and language that would make for a good telling, but then you'd miss the hilarious illustrations. Their comic timing and use of color is perfect. And how about the old woman's facial expressions? Kids who never get alone time due to siblings or family at home will identify with the old woman's quest. No spoilers, but she goes pretty far for some peace & quie ...more
Rummanah (Books in the Spotlight)
We all have a day where we need just a few moments of quiet to get things done and/or concentrate on a project. Well, we can all sympathize with Granny who just wants to knit sweaters in peace except she is constantly interrupted wherever she goes. The story has a Eastern European folktale vibe to it. It is incredibly funny and entertaining. The repetitive line of "Leave Me Alone!" makes it a good choice to read aloud. The picture books is filled with colorful images, all white except the aliens ...more
Jane G Meyer
Nov 21, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I feel this way sometimes! How much I would love access to a wormhole, where I could sip my tea and knit!

What I especially like about this book is that the old woman did something about her struggle, and though she could have acted with a little more restraint and kindness (!!!) she found her way to the finish line by being persistent. So fun...
Oct 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Loved this tale of Grandmother who just wanted a little alone time to knit some sweaters- and finally finds it's after travelling through the woods, up and over a mountain, to the moon and beyond! The drawings are lovely and it's a good book to teach kids that sometimes alone time is necessary for sanity!
I did not care for this book at all. Although there is a bit of absurdity that may appeal to some children, I did not enjoy this one bit. If you are looking for a nice story about a mom needing a break, try Five Minutes Peace by Jill Murphy.
Mar 04, 2017 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: read-to-tristan
**Rated by my son**
Oct 08, 2016 rated it really liked it
Delightful!! A nice short tale of giving yourself time, filling your reserves, then returning to the world feeling love.
Sep 26, 2016 rated it liked it
The best part was when she goes into a wormhole. I can probably count on one hand the number of fairy-tale-themed picture books that have wormholes in them. One finger, really.
Marissa Elera
Sep 21, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Hilarious and wonderfully illustrated. A new favorite!
Stefanie Kellum
Jul 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
So totally my mood at the library today. ;)
La Coccinelle
Nov 20, 2018 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
This is a bit of a confused book. It doesn't know whether it wants to be folksy or just plain weird. And there's not a lot of consistency, so it's kind of a chaotic read.

I felt for the poor old woman at the beginning. I bet when she had three daughters, she never expected them to spend their early adulthood being brood mares. The poor old thing ends up with thirty grandchildren, with not a son-in-law in sight (which I guess explains why they all have to live with her in her house). Way to pick y
Linda Lipko
I love that this 2017 Caldecott Honor book is humorously funny, and contains a subject that children and adults can relate to.

Much like the story of there was an old woman who lived in a shoe and had so many children she didn't know what to do, this grandmother also longs for space and quiet. Living in a small claustrophobic house with many grandchildren and their mother, she wants some time to be alone.

Shouting loudly she screams "LEAVE ME ALONE!!!!" And, finally when her pleas are unanswered,
Jim Angstadt
Apr 28, 2018 rated it really liked it
Leave Me Alone!
Vera Brosgol (Goodreads Author)

This graphic story is a 10 minute read. Really!

Grandmother is a knitter, and all those darn kids are interfering with her knitting. "Leave me alone!", she said.

She bails, trying several remote, impossible places, only to be disturbed at each. "Leave me alone!" she repeats. Science fiction saves the day and she is able to complete her knitting and return.

Like Anya's Ghost, author Brosgol is able to capture and illustrate emotional reactions and states
Jennifer (JenIsNotaBookSnob)
Loved this book, it is very cute. Poor Grandma just wants to get some knitting done, but everywhere she goes she is interrupted by children or bears or goats or aliens. She finally goes through a wormhole into an empty void where she can finish her knitting. Once finished, she realizes that she is ready for people again and goes back home with her 30 little sweaters for her grandchildren.
Dec 21, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s-ya
An old woman thinks she wants to be alone, until she is, then she doesn't like it.
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Vera Brosgol was born in Moscow, Russia in 1984 and moved to the United States when she was five. She received a diploma in Classical Animation from Sheridan College, and currently works at Laika Inc. in Portland, Oregon drawing storyboards for feature animation.

She has done illustration work for clients such as Nickelodeon, Sony Computer Entertainment, and Simon & Schuster. Her first graphic