Claudia has a sad good-bye to make. Her grandmother, Mimi, has just died. Claudia understands that Mimi was sick for a long time, but she's still mad at her grandmother for leaving her. Who will help Claudia with her homework...and share "special tea" with her?
To keep from thinking about Mimi, Claudia spends all her free time painting and baby-sitting. She's even teaching an art class for some of the kids in the neighborhood.
Claudia knows she has to let go of Mimi sometime. But how do you say good-bye to a special friend...forever?
After Mimi faints during dinner, she is taken to the hospital where doctors believe that her condition is blood-related. After some pints of fresh blood, Mimi starts feeling better and is allowed to go home.
On a Saturday morning, Claudia is teaching an art class for some of the BSC's charges, Mimi faints again and is taken back to the hospital. After Mimi gets new blood again, she improves well enough to come back home again, but the next morning, Mr. & Mrs. Kishi tell Claudia & Janine that Mimi passed away during the night.
Three days after the funeral, Claudia doesn't feel like herself and after she sees Janine in Mimi's room going through her things, Claudia loses it and slowly begins to heal. In the end, Claudia makes a tribute collage to hang in Mimi's bedroom.
During Claudia's art class, Claudia becomes close to a girl named Corrie Addison. Claudia learns that Corrie's parents tend to shuffle her and her brother, Sean to various classes and activities so they can have time to themselves.
Ann M. Martin's Dear Reader Letter
I began working on Claudia and the Sad Good-bye shortly after my own grandmother died. She didn’t have a stroke like Mimi, but just like Claudia, I was angry at her doctors for not saving her even though there was nothing anyone could have done. She was just too old and ill. Having just been through that experience helped me to describe Claudia’s feelings.
I didn’t make a tribute to my grandmother like Claudia did, but on the night before her funeral, my sister and my cousins and I gathered to reminisce about Granny. Eventually, we found ourselves laughing and telling stories about funny things Granny had done. It helped us feel a little better. For a long time after the funeral I kept a picture of Granny on my desk so I could look at her while I was working. And that helped, too.