The Story of Granny Jen

I wanted to write a story that had not already been written, where children figure things out without being showered with overt or overbearing advice. Choosing a difficult task, the kids in the book, decide to solve their own problem. Finding Granny Jen and their Easter eggs .


This book is about success and relationships, the uplifting and the puzzling. Despite this, it is light hearted and easy to read. The mystery of Granny Jen is solved with the help of two small animals. The book is packed with ‘growing up’ lessons that all kids encounter and often test out. To support parents, teachers and carers, the book contains a short list of suggested activities as well as two blank pages to be used by children or adults.

This book, like many others, has power as it explores the morals and ethics bound to relationship building. For example, readers might react to a deliberate lie, or praise the girls for being brave in the face of risk, and possibly be appalled at animals who choose to harrass and bully the wrong doer.

Set in rural Queensland on Granny Jen’s farm, GRANNY JEN is MISSING is Jenifer M Ryan’s first kid lit book. Tabi and Ruby, arrive for their annual Easter egg hunt, but Granny Jen is nowhere to be found.

The girls decide Granny needs to be found. Holding hands they begin their search by seeking help from native Australian animals that live on the farm.

Unfortunately, for the girls, one of the farm animals, Mr Christian, is not honest. This makes their challenge much more difficult. And, unknowingly they set the animals to action.

My first children’s book, Granny Jen is Missing, was inspired observations from my many years as a teacher, and the lives of my grandchildren. I found the most difficult things to endure in those situations was injustice, a childs sends of lack of worth, resignation. Granny Jen is Missing is a unique story that explores grit, determination as well as behaviour and consequences- the things kids encounter at everyday.

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Quick Chat

Jennifer M Ryan

Chats about her book

Tell us about her Grandies

Granny Jen's grandchildren aren’t complicated. The opening scene sees them arriving at the farm, very relaxed and chirpy. There’s a quick conversation where they discover Ben doesn’t know where Granny is, Obviously, the girls are comfortable on the farm and self-sufficient.

View a snapshot of Granny Jen's farm

Why Queensland?

This story is very autobiographical. It was is inspired by all of my grandchildren. We all live in central Queensland, Australia. Each family in their own community, but within a few hours of each other. Every year I try to write a personal story for the kids. This story resonated, and so I created a fictional version of the family story.

Why So Dramatic?

I believe in telling children dramatic stories. Stories where tenacity, where character detail allows readers to imagine very real characters, just like them, because they can represent different people, even if they don’t look and sound like everybody else.

It also shows kids that the world is full of endless challenges and possibilities.



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