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Drawn Together

4.39  ·  Rating details ·  4,571 ratings  ·  882 reviews
When a young boy visits his grandfather, their lack of a common language leads to confusion, frustration, and silence. But as they sit down to draw together, something magical happens-with a shared love of art and storytelling, the two form a bond that goes beyond words.
Hardcover, 34 pages
Published June 5th 2018 by Little, Brown Books for Young Readers
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Average rating 4.39  · 
Rating details
 ·  4,571 ratings  ·  882 reviews

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Dave Schaafsma
Each year my family reads all the Goodreads-award-nominated picture books, and we have been doing this for years. Everyone rates each book and adds a comment and it may (or may not) affect my overall rating. This is book #5 of 2018. I read this in June 2018 but will bump up my rating from 3 stars to 4 stars because this is now a family rating.

Lyra (11): 4.5 stars. It shows what art is and what it means to the boy and his grandfather. Didn't need words, though.

Hank (12): 5 stars! I love how they
I enjoy Dan Santat’s work. It is lovely. This is about the separation of the generations and culture. A Grandfather only speaks his native language and the young boy is American. They don’t like the same TV and they can’t communicate easily. They feel very separated and it’s not fun to be together.

The boy then goes to the kitchen to draw his little super person and the grandfather sees this and gets his own sketch book out. He also has his own super person that he drew of himself. Now they can c
While I absolutely love and appreciate the presented message of Minh Lê's Drawn Together that one can also communicate with other methods than using words and speech (and how the little boy and his grandfather soon realise that their shared love of art and drawing can indeed bridge their communication issues and result in both understanding and having fun, having a good time together), the language oriented part of myself does kind of question and wonder why for one the little boy has not been t ...more
Jun 19, 2019 rated it really liked it
Another fantastic illustrated children's book that I would never have looked at if not for Read Harder. It is a book of very few words which is of course the point. This adorable grandfather-grandson story is mostly conveyed in these lush and beautiful drawings by Caldecott medalist Dan Santat.
For such a short and apparently simple book I found it very moving.
Aug 13, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely loved this book! I wish I was an artist so I could draw a picture to show how I feel! An important book, it transcends the grandparent-grandchild relationship and reminds us that, at heart, we may have something in common with everyone we meet, regardless of perceived barriers. The art it outstanding and was deserving of a Caldecott nod, IMO.

(view spoiler)
A grandson and his grandfather, initially not finding much to say or do with each other, end up connecting though their love of drawing and painting.
The images are bold with brilliant colours, and this book left me smiling.
La Coccinelle
Jan 05, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: children
This is a strong picture book about a boy and his grandfather. Though they don't speak the same language with their mouths, they manage to find a way to communicate with each other and have an adventure through their shared love of art.

Good portions of the book don't have any text at all, which is just fine; the pictures tell the story very well. I like how the boy and his grandfather each have a different style of drawing. But they're eventually able to bridge the gap between them and even lear
Elizabeth A
Jan 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019, kids-ya, art
Bridging the generation gap is difficult in the best of times, but when you don't speak the same language as your grandparents there is an added complexity to the situation. So many immigrant families face this challenge and I loved that this picture book tackled this topic head on.

This is the story of a young boy and his Grandpa. There is a lot of silence between them, and they are unknowable to each other. When they discover a shared passion for art, a bridge starts to build across the gap. I
Deb (Readerbuzz) Nance
A boy and his grandfather don't speak the same language, but find a way to connect through drawing. Magnificent illustrations. ...more
Jan 15, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Readers Looking for Beautifully-Illustrated Picture-Books and/or Stories About the Power of Art
A young boy and his grandfather, not speaking the same language, have difficulty communicating with one another in this second picture-book from author Minh Lê, who made his debut with Let Me Finish! . When the boy begins to draw himself as a modern superhero, while visiting with his grandfather, the older man becomes excited and grabs his own sketchbook, in which he is depicted as a traditional Thai fighter. Through their artwork, boy and man make a connection, and manage to cross the divide ...more
Feb 07, 2018 added it
Shelves: picturebooks
So wonderful, this book about a grandparent, from the child's point of view*. Lovely concept from Minh Le, and Dan Santat has truly outdone himself with these illustrations.

*Pair with Nana in the City, by Lauren Castillo.
A gorgeous picture book about a grandfather and grandson who speak different languages but learn to communicate through their art. A poignant celebration of what can bring us together rather than divide us. An uplifting story that can be appreciated by readers of all ages.
Chance Lee
Jun 08, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-it
Touching story about bridging a gap between ages, languages, and cultures.
Benji Martin
Aug 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
A powerful book about finding common ground despite age and culture barriers. Definitely a 2019 Caldecott contender.
CW (The Quiet Pond) ✨
One of the most tender stories about grandparent-grandchild relationships, generational differences, and cultural differences I have ever read - and it is only 34 pages. A must-read.
Katt Hansen
Nov 19, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I absolutely love how this grandfather and grandchild come together when they have no words to communicate. The artwork makes me want to fall into the story within the story, and the complete understanding that comes between these two individuals left me somewhat choked up. This is just beautiful, and engages the child to using a wealth of culture, imagination, ideas, family, and finding ways to communicate without words.
Dee Dee G
Aug 08, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Art can work wonders for communication. I liked this a lot.
Luanne Ollivier
Jun 23, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Drawn Together is a new children's picture book from author Minh Lê and illustrator Dan Santat.

Before Little Guy and Gramma turned the first page we talked about the images on the cover - what would we find inside. As well as the dual meaning of 'drawn'.

Who do you think the two people on the cover could be? What about the 'elf' with the wand be? And the 'scary' black and white character? The flyleaf has some crayon scribble illustrations that are so real, Little Guy thought someone had colored i
Dec 10, 2018 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a wonderful and heartwarming story, told using few words and lots of pictures, that shows how art can help to bridge the divide in communication between generations and cultures.

Dan Santat's illustrations are marvelous and mezmerizing, "created in traditional mixed media and composited on the computer."

It is obvious that the author, Minh Lê, communicated his vision for the story in depth with Mr. Santat, because the message really comes through very well. Overall, it's a visual feast fo
Valuable lesson in communicating beyond words - through art, imagination, and storytelling, as a grandfather and grandson who have a frustrating language barrier explore what they have in common by creating a vivid, colorful, fantastical story together. Beautiful illustrations and fantasy world-building in this near-wordless picture book. I love that the heroes of the story they create are an old man and a young boy like themselves.
Aug 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
I did like this but I didn't love it. One reason is the inability of the two to use *any* words, as Gundula points out. The other is that the blurb, title, and cover art tell the whole story... I, personally, found no reward inside and am glad it didn't take me too long to find a copy to read. But I do think that the target audiences (youth, immigrants, artists, etc.) will like it more than I did. ...more
This book was remarkable. A young boy visits his aging grandfather who seems to have lost the ability to make conversation, but the boy soon discovers a new way of communication. My dad has vascular dementia and I find myself often in this same situation. I loved how the author was so delicate and respectful to this issue.
Jillian Heise
Holy both story & illustrations. This is a must-read/must-share picture book about family, communication, bravery, and love. Preorder it now - I'll already call it as one of the best picture books of 2018. I can't wait to share it with kids. ...more
I don't know if I've ever read another picture book where I felt the text utterly unneeded. I know this is Minh Le story but I found his narrative intrusive and unnecessary.

Santat showed the complete arc and emotion of the story in his mesmerizing drawings.
Jun 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
When I read this book, I am totally engrossed. The sparse words and the vivid illustrations capture me. Thanks for this one.
Anna Smithberger
Jul 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Gorgeous book! I don’t think I could do it justice in storytime, so I’ll just have to talk it up to EVERYONE
Jul 20, 2018 rated it it was amazing
WOW! Powerful, beautiful, leaves ME speechless.
Oct 03, 2018 rated it it was amazing
So few words yet what a poignant book! Really sweet story about art connecting across generations and through language barriers. Yes, it made me cry.
Ms. B
Dec 13, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I loved this story about a boy and his grandpa who find common ground through their drawings. It's my pick for the 2019 Caldecott! ...more
Todd Glaeser
Jan 18, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Another amazing book illustrated by Dan Santat, about how art can bring people together!
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Mock Caldecott 2022: 2019 Mock Caldecott Winner 6 95 Jan 28, 2019 03:11PM  

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I am the author of Drawn Together illustrated by Caldecott Medalist Dan Santat and Let Me Finish! (named an NPR Best Book of 2016) illustrated by Isabel Roxas (both published by Disney-Hyperion). I am also writing Green Lantern: Legacy, a graphic novel (illustrated by Andie Tong) for the new DC Comics middle grade imprint, DC Zoom. As a member of the kidlit consortium The Niblings, I write about c ...more

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