Brothers of the Knight

Brothers of the Knight

4.7 8
by Debbie Allen, Kadir Nelson, Brothers Grimm
     
 

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Debbie Allen's contemporary retelling of the classic tale The Twelve Dancing Princesses with illustrations from Kadir Nelson!

 Reverend Knight can't understand why his twelve sons' sneakers are torn to threads each and every morning, and the boys aren't talking. They know their all-night dancing wouldn't fit with their father's

Overview

Debbie Allen's contemporary retelling of the classic tale The Twelve Dancing Princesses with illustrations from Kadir Nelson!

 Reverend Knight can't understand why his twelve sons' sneakers are torn to threads each and every morning, and the boys aren't talking. They know their all-night dancing wouldn't fit with their father's image in the community. Maybe Sunday, a pretty new nanny with a knack for getting to the bottom of household mysteries, can crack the case. This modern, hip retelling of the classic tale The Twelve Dancing Princesses bursts with vibrant artwork and text that's as energetic as the twelve toe-tapping Knight brothers themselves. 

"A funky, fresh adaptation." —Publishers Weekly

"This is a high-flying alternative to the tale's usual dainty renditions." —Kirkus Reviews

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
Actress-choreographer-dancer-director Debbie Allen shows her creative gifts in Brothers of the Knight, a retelling of the Twelve Dancing Princesses. Reborn with new characters and sparkling whimsy, the story tells of the widowed Reverend Knight of Harlem, who is crazed by his twelve sons' shoes which are "worn to threads, messed up, torn up, stinky, dirty, tacky, jacked up...you get the picture." He can't find a nanny to control his wild offspring until the magical character, Sunday, shows up. Shrouded in her invisible scarf, she follows the boys, discovers their secret, opens communication with their father, and unites the family with dance. An original retelling that will appeal to contemporary kids. 1999, Dial, Ages 4 to 8, $15.99. Reviewer: Susie Wilde
Children's Literature - Christopher Moning
Award-winning actor, producer, and choreographer Debbie Allen tries her hand at children's literature with this book, a whimsical tale of the dancing Knight family. The Reverend Knight has twelve sons to raise on his own. His big problem is with shoes. Every morning the children's' shoes mysteriously show up worn to threads--"messed up, torn up, stinky, dirty, tacky, jacked up." Reverend Knight hires a new housekeeper to care for the children, and hopefully to shed light on the shoe mystery. The housekeeper, whose name is Sunday, is a kind and magical woman. It doesn't take long for her to discover the secret the boys have been too afraid to share with their father. These boys love to dance! Every night they sneak off to the Big Band Ballroom where they burn away the hours cutting the rug. Sunday doesn't squeal on the boys, and it nearly costs her her job. But all ends on a happy note in this uplifting tale of family togetherness. Lively colorful illustrations greatly add to the fun.
Kirkus Reviews
Spun from a live performance at the Kennedy Center, this urban version of "The Twelve Dancing Princesses" is a strong picture-book debut for both Allen and Nelson. Reverend Knight, a Harlem minister, can't understand why his twelve sons' hightops are "worn to threads, messed up, torn up, stinky, dirty, tacky, jacked up" each and every morning. Promising to get to the bottom of it all, winsome Sunday, latest in a long line of housekeepers, whips out a cloak of invisibility and follows the boys night after night to the Big Band Ballroom. When she confronts them, they confess: they love to dance, but fear their father's disapproval. Posed in theatrical arrangements and postures, Nelson's exuberant figures fill his stage-like scenes. In the end, the boys tell all, the reverend admits that he too used to cut the rug, and the stage is set for a swinging finale. This is a high-flying alternative to the tale's usual dainty renditions. (Picture book/folklore. 6-8)

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780142300169
Publisher:
Penguin Young Readers Group
Publication date:
12/28/2001
Edition description:
Reprint
Pages:
144
Sales rank:
207,160
Product dimensions:
8.50(w) x 11.00(h) x 0.10(d)
Lexile:
560L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

Debbie Allen is an award-winning producer, actress, director, and choreographer. Her books include Brothers of the Night, Dancing in the Wings, and Amistad: Give us Free. She lives in Los Angeles, California

Kadir Nelson, New York Times bestselling author and two-time Caldecott Honor winner lives in San Diego, California.

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Brothers of the Knight 4.8 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 8 reviews.
cierraw More than 1 year ago
This book was very good. It is a great children's book, it was a little weird in some parts. In most parts it is very good. I think Debbie Allen wrote a good book, and you should read it.
PatriciaJL More than 1 year ago
Reverend Knight is a pastor in Harlem and a father of 12 boys. In a search to solve the mystery of his sons' torn-up shoes he hires nanny Sunday. Nanny Sunday is taken on a dancing adventure when she discovers their secret! This modern day twist of the German folktale, "The Twelve Dancing Princesses", is fun and exciting. Elements of jazz and regee are mixed up into both the writing and the illustrations. Told through the family dog, you will want to get up and dance after reading this picture.
dec0558 More than 1 year ago
What a delightful, FUN book! It's a modern take on a classic fairy tale. The illustrations are so enjoyable: beautifully drawn, funny, and filled with details that kids of all ages (and adults) will enjoy! I just discovered this book (january of 2009) but it was published in 2001. It's the type of story that is screaming out to be made into a movie or a Broadway musical. Some smart producer, writer and composer should snatch up this story NOW!
Guest More than 1 year ago
great
Guest More than 1 year ago
This was an excellent story about children and how they learn to deal with their parent. I loved the novelty of the book, and the artwork portraying the story line.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My children (6&8) loved this book. The story is unique and magical. The illustrations are beautiful.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My 7 year old son and saw author Debbie Allen in the NBA store in NYC this past weekend. She read Brothers of the Knight as a back to school reading promotion. I was very impressed with the book. If you are looking for a book that will keep your child's attention as well as promote Christian values, this is the book for you.
Guest More than 1 year ago
If you loved FAME, you'll adore Debbie's book. It really brings it alive !