Granny Torrelli Makes Soup

ISBN: 0064409600
ISBN 13: 9780064409605
By: Sharon Creech

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About this book

Bailey, who is usually so nice, Bailey, my neighbor, my friend, my buddy, my pal for my whole life, knowing me better than anybody, that Bailey, that Bailey I am so mad at right now, that Bailey, I hate him today. Twelve-year-old Rosie and her best friend, Bailey, don't always get along, that's true. But Granny Torrelli seems to know just how to make things right again with her interesting stories and family recipes. It's easier to remember what's important about love, life, and friendship while Granny Torrelli makes soup.

Reader's Thoughts

Justin Langlois

What a cute story! Granny Torrelli, Rosie and Bailey seem to live an entire life in this extremely short novel by Sharon Creech (her husband is a former headmaster at Pennington!) Rosie is your "typical" middle school girl with a blind boy for a best friend (Baily) and a grandmother (Granny Torrelli) who has a knack for saying and doing the right thing at exactly the right time. And of course, the food makes your mouth water the entire time you are reading! You only need a few hours to enjoy this one, so give it a shot.

Peter Krumholz

Four years ago I found Granny Torrelli Makes Soup in my math teacher's book collection and decided to read it to pass the time. I fell in love with the innocent writing, the simpleness in the voice of a 12 year old girl who loves her blind best friend, and the incredible naïveté that is deeply etched into this small book, albeit in a heartwarming, refreshing manner. The vignettes which complete the story go straight to the heart; I find myself connecting with Rosie as she narrates them in her colorful, exotic way. It became an instant favorite. It's still, after four years, what I turn to when there's nothing else to read.

Ann Marie

I loved this book !!!! I would recommend it for a fourth grade summer reading list. I love Granny Torrelli and wish she was mine !!!!


This book (in my oppinion) has a unique setting for the story.In this novel Rosie(the main character) and her grandmother decide to cook various things in her kitchen such as soup,meatballs,and other delicouse items.While preparing these meals they reflect on things that occured in the past and discuss many different events.Overall this book will captivate any type of audience,young or old.

Rachel G

Rachel Gedies 74Granny Torrelli Makes Soup The book I read for my book review was Granny Torrelli Makes Soup. The story is funny, heartwarming, and deserves a five star rating. I strongly recommend this book to 6th, 7th, and 8th graders because the story is about two life long friends, Rosie and Bailey, who are learning to deal with issues in their friendship. The story also involves Granny Torrelli, who helps her granddaughter Rosie, and Bailey ‘’Boy’’ learn how to resolve their issues when she brings them together to make ‘’Zuppa.’’ One reason why I recommend this book is because Rosie and Bailey are dealing with relationship problems, which is something that most twelve year olds have to deal with. Rosie and Bailey have known each other for a very long time, ever since kindergarten, and have never really fought until now. Bailey, who is blind, gets mad at Rosie for learning to read his Braille book. Bailey doesn’t like that Rosie learned to read the one book that only he could understand. This was the one thing that he could do that she could not. Adding to the problem, tension rises when a new girl moves into the neighborhood, a girl Bailey seems to like a little too much, maybe a little bit more than Rosie. Rosie describes her as a girl who is ‘’ too friendly’’ and who ‘’ smiles all over the place.’’ Although Bailey may not understand Rosie’s feelings, Granny Torrelli does. The support and wisdom she provides is another good reason to read this book. Granny Torrelli purposely brings Rosie and Bailey into the kitchen to make ‘’Zuppa.’’ She shares stories with them about her childhood friends and the hurt feelings that she learned to deal with when she was Rosie and Bailey’s age. Granny Torrelli understands that time is precious and should not be wasted on unimportant things. She shares with them the story of a sick baby she once cared for. Granny Torrelli tells Rosie and Bailey, ‘’ I felt as if I was ten years older… I felt as if my life was bigger now.’’ (p. 136) Granny Torrelli understands the importance of connecting with one another. The kitchen is the perfect place to connect and find comfort through food. Through her stories, Granny Torrelli helps Rosie and Bailey work through their own hurt feelings and mis understandings. Granny Torrelli helps Rosie and Bailey understand that jealousy is normal and that the best friendships will last no matter what they face. As they all join together to enjoy the feast they have created in the kitchen, Granny Torrelli exclaims, ‘’ Tutto va bene!’’ All is well!


For several years, our school librarian has been reading this book aloud to our fifth graders. It is about Rosie and Bailey and their very real friendship, complete with competition, jealousy and true caring for each other. Interspersed are Granny Torrelli's insights as she shares her own stories, while engaging the kids in soup and pasta-making. This is a great book for interactive responses. We would have the kids role-play being Rosie and Bailey during the "Inner Thoughts" activity in which the student can share their characters REAL feelings about a situation. We also did "Call on an Expert" where a student would role play being Oprah or Abraham Lincoln, or some other wise figure who could offer advice to the characters. Students loved these activities and it got them involved in the story and the characters. Sharon Creech writes about the everyday concerns of "tweens" in a real, but gentle and often funny way in this book. She appeals to both boys and girls. (Love That Dog, is also especially good for boys.)


Food can make people come together and become closer. In this book, the making of soup played an importance in the story. I found Granny Torrelli Makes Soup to be a very cute read and I liked how it was told through making a dish. 3.5The book was broken up into two different parts, and each part there was a different kind of recipe being made. The first part concentrated on making "zuppa" or soup. The main character Rosie was mad at her best friend Bailey. While helping her grandmother make the soup, Rosie was questioned by Granny Torrelli to figure out the cause of Rosie's problem and to remember why she was friends with Bailey. The second part of the book showed the characters making "superior pasta" with meatballs. A new girl had moved into town and Rosie was jealous on the attention the new girl was giving Bailey. As Rosie and Bailey were helping Granny Torrelli with the pasta and meatballs, they got to discuss their feelings about the situation they were in. What I found most interesting about this book was how the making of food helped solve problems. Granny Torrelli was the one teaching the children how to make certain dishes. While the food was being made, Granny Torrelli would begin to ask questions that made Rosie and Bailey question about their friendship. Granny Torrelli also gave examples of her own childhood to relate more to the children. With their talk, story telling, and cooking, Rosie and Bailey came to understand one another more and came to learn who Granny Torrelli used to be as a child.This was an enjoyable book. Many of my students had fun reading this one because they were able to relate to it. Unfortunately, I was not able to connect as well with the story. I found it cute but it did not hit "home" for me. However, I do recommend this book to children since it had themes that children would understand.


Granny Torrelli makes soup. The genre is realistic fiction. in the begginig Rosie has a best friend named Bailey and they did everything together. Granny Torrelli makes soup which she calls "zuppa". in the middle of the story Rosie and Bailey are not friends anymore. And Granny Torrelli tries to fix the problem and it doesn't work. At the end of the story they become friends again. The most interesting part in the story to me was when they weren't friends because it was like the boiling point. I choose this book because it looked very interesting and I wanted to try it out. I liked this book. I recommend this book because its catchy and and people would like it. I think people who like realistic fiction books should read this book. I will read another realistic fiction book next probably.


Another battle of the books selection. I came into it ready to like it because a dear friend introduced me to loving Sharon Creech books - (yes you LTL). And it didn't disappoint. It's a sweet story of a girl, Rosie, whose best friend and next door neighbor, Bailey, is a boy who is blind. The two children were born a week apart and grew up together, and the book takes place at that time of life where friendships can shift. Luckily Rosie's grandmother Granny Torrelli is not only older but wiser too. As she and Rosie (and Bailey) cook together in the kitchen, Granny can share her stories and wisdom. It shows that lessons of the heart are timeless as we all learn to live and love together. There are funny parts and sweet parts, and a book I was happy to have Liza read.


The story starts off with the two best friends Rosie and Bailey getting in a fight. Rosie talks with Granny Torelli all about Bailey and their friendship. While talking, Granny makes soup. Once the fight is over, the two friends bond over the new girl on their street and deciding they do not like her. While making soup, Bailey, Rosie, and grandma discuss past experiences. Jealousy is a huge theme in this story that could be a great lesson for students. Granny is one of those characters who you really feel connected to while reading the story. While the two friends are young and inexperienced, Granny has knowledge and has her own, funny, spin on situations. I think this is an absolutely amazing story. I could not help but think of my own grandma as I read this story. My grandma, like granny, uses random Italian words and also loves to cook. Besides the physical similarities, the emotional qualities are what really reminded me of my nana. They are both such kind, good listeners, and will always know the right thing to say. I definitely recommend this book!

Bones Kendall

I am reading this to my kids before sleep. I do this about thirty minutes every night. I usually try to play voices. This is a great read aloud story! I only do a hint of the Italian, not the parody, so I only add a bit of an -a to Granny's voice. Mostly it's in the rhythm of Creech's dialogue.My kids are into it. They understand the emotional nature of the story. Rosie is so honest with how she feels!I'm not yet done, but I am looking forward to the last fifteen pages. It hass been a fun, short read. I got it at the used bookstore, but I noticed it because I had previously considered it for my English 97 class (two levels below 101). I chose Rules, by Cynthia Lord, instead.Granny Torelli Makes Soup features a character who has a vision impairment. My 97 class is disability themed.


** spoiler alert ** A wise Italian grandmother imparts life advice (and cooking lessons) to her 12-year-old granddaughter, Rosie. Rosie’s story unfolds as she and Granny make and eat zuppa, and Granny Torrelli tells parallel stories from her own childhood to help Rosie with her current predicament. Rosie and Bailey are neighbors, born only a week apart. She has always been his helper as he was born blind. But now they have a falling out. As Rosie tells Granny, Bailey is acting spiteful, all because she tried to be just like him. To be just like Bailey, Rosie secretly learned to read Braille and unknowingly took away the special thing only he could do. When the two of them come together with Granny Torrelli in the kitchen and make cavatelli, the rift between them heals. Stories and wisdom continue as sauce and meatballs are made, helping to clarify feelings. As family and friends raise a glass of water to toast the cooks, Rosie realizes that her world is indeed bigger as is Bailey’s.This was not the best book, but it was very heartfelt. I did not like the character Janine, but I did like the fact that the Italian Grandmother's childhood was parallel to Rosie's.


Family Read Aloud event at our school was a huge success! Close to 200 families participated in this event. Families were provided this book to read together at home with tips from Jim Trelease. Our culminating celebration was a huge success! Parents and children were abuzz about the relationship between Baily and Rosie! The backdrop of making soup with Granny Torrelli offers an intimate and funny conversation between Granny and Rosie about life and the comparisons between young and old. This book touched all ages! I would highly recommend it as a family read aloud or a book to share among friends.


Granny Torrelli is the story of friendship between twelve year old Rosie and the boy next door, Bailey. They have grown up alongside each other, and have shared everything together. Which is why Rosie doesn’t understand why Bailey gets angry at her for learning how to read his books — written in Braille because Bailey is blind. Added to the misunderstanding is the tension that arises when a new girl moves in across the street. A ‘too-friendly’ new girl who ’smiles all over the place’. A new girl who Bailey seems to like. Maybe even more than Rosie.The problems are simple, but the emotions are real, which makes the problems important both to Rosie and to the reader. The voices of the children are perfectly pitched, their thoughts, words, and feelings accurately tuned to who they are and what they are experiencing at the age they are experiencing it. But what makes this book so precious to me is the figure of Granny Torrelli, arriving in the midst of these boiling tempers and simmering problems. Rosie introduces her like this: ”Granny Torrelli comes over, says she’s in charge of me tonight. She wants soup. Zuppa! she calls it. She says it like this: ZOO-pah!”With the matter-of-fact bustle of a seasoned cook, Granny calls Rosie and Bailey to help her in the kitchen. They roll fresh pasta; mash ground beef, eggs, and onions into meatballs; stir spices into red sauce, and in the process of cooking, and listening to Granny’s stories about her childhood friend, Pardo, Rosie and Bailey learn to see beyond their hurt feelings and misunderstandings. Granny’s stories create the circular shape that Creech often uses in her writing — the cycle that moves beginnings to endings, to brand new beginnings. The beginning of her friendship with Pardo is an echo of Bailey and Rosie’s friendship. It’s ending creates a new beginning for them. The entrance of the new neighboor is another beginning that promises new returns.The story is a also a testament to the magic of the kitchen: of the nourishment that comes both from and through cooking, and also of the sense of comfort and connectedness that come from food. In a recent article in The Horn Book Magazine, author Linda Sue Park discusses the importance of food in the books we read and write. “Food and love are the earliest things we learn,” she says, “with the deepest roots and reverberations. Maurice Sendak knew this when he wrote in Where the Wild Things Are that Max wanted to be “where someone loved him best of all” — and that love was epitomized by a supper that was still hot” (”Still Hot: Great Food Moments in Children’s Literature,” The Horn Book Magazine, May/July 2009).Creech knew it, too, when Rosie carries the steaming bowl of cavatelli, “covered with the beautiful red sauce, to the table, and Granny Torelli brings the bowl of meatballs and spareribs, and Carmelita brings the extra sauce, and Bailey has the cheese, and Pop brings the salad, and Mom pours water in everyone’s glass.” The new neighbors are invited to the feast, and Rosie imagines “Granny Torrelli’s mama and papa and sisters and brothers and Pardo and my grandpa Torrelli, all up in heaven having their own pasta party.”“My world,” Rosie says, “seems a little bigger.” She is seeing those cycles that swell and repeat and never end, inspired by the nourishment that comes from the combination of friendship, love and food.

Jenn Engle

Completely enjoyed the characters' personalities and the tempo & mood of the plot. Really liked the life lesson embedded in the story, too.

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