Saint Francis and the Wolf

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Overview

Terrible wolf is terrorizing the town of Gubbia, and no one can stop him! First the townspeople send a brave knight. He never returns. Then they send an army of trained warriors. They get destroyed. Finally the townspeople send a great and mighty war machine, but even that can't stop the wolf. The villagers don't know what to do — until Saint Francis visits the town and speaks to the wolf in his own language.

Caldecott Medal — winning artist Richard Egielski exquisitely ...

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Overview

Terrible wolf is terrorizing the town of Gubbia, and no one can stop him! First the townspeople send a brave knight. He never returns. Then they send an army of trained warriors. They get destroyed. Finally the townspeople send a great and mighty war machine, but even that can't stop the wolf. The villagers don't know what to do — until Saint Francis visits the town and speaks to the wolf in his own language.

Caldecott Medal — winning artist Richard Egielski exquisitely illustrates this classic tale of love, friendship, and the importance of living together in harmony.

In Gubbio, Italy, Saint Francis shows the villagers that neither wealth nor strength are as powerful as love and compassion.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Long before Doctor Dolittle came along, Saint Francis of Assisi was known to have a special talent for soothing even the most savage beast. In this sharp and lively picture book, Egielski (The Tub People) recreates the oft-told tale of the friar's taming of a wicked wolf that terrorized the Italian town of Gubbio in the 13th century. Though no knight, army or "great war machine" can stop the violent creature, Saint Francis' gentle words urging the wolf to make peace do the trick. Crisp, frame-like borders surround Egielski's scenes, which brim with medieval accoutrements and light, humorous details (i.e., the wolf uses a jousting spear as a toothpick after noshing on a knight). The overall effect-heightened by a typeface that resembles hand lettering-will have readers imagining they are flipping through a scrapbook or ancient volume. This inviting and entertaining homage to the saint will be welcome on many a family bookshelf. All ages. (Oct.) Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-3-A simple retelling of a familiar legend. A wolf is terrorizing the Italian town of Gubbio. Knights, armies, and a threatening-looking "war machine" have all failed to put a stop to his terrible behavior. Only St. Francis, who can speak the wolf's language, is able to find a workable compromise for the creature and the town. The expressive cartoon art is done in Egielski's characteristic style and is full of child appeal. The warm bright colors of the townspeople's garb mixed with Francis's earth tones create a visually pleasing design; touches of humor (such as the wolf picking its teeth with a knight's spear) keep the tone light even when the story mentions frightening topics. Egielski summarizes St. Francis's life in a couple of paragraphs, concentrating primarily on his ability to communicate with animals and his message that "every man, woman, and child should love all God's creatures that walk on the earth, fly in the sky, and swim in the sea." Because of this, the book is appropriate for children of all faiths. For more information about the saint, consult Brian Wildsmith's longer Saint Francis (Eerdmans, 1996).-Lucinda Snyder Whitehurst, St. Christopher's School, Richmond, VA Copyright 2005 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Caldecott Medalist Egielski focuses on one incident in the life of St. Francis, a time when he tamed a fierce wolf that was terrorizing the Italian town of Gubbia. The wolf was eating shepherds and farmers as well as their livestock, so the town leaders decide action must be taken. St. Francis repeatedly offers his help, but the leaders send first their bravest knight, then an entire army and then a "great war machine" to kill the wolf, who fights off all these attacks with increasing violence. Finally, St. Francis goes alone to meet the wolf and makes peace with him through gentle words in his own wolf language. Egielski's illustrations create a winning wolf character as well as an evocative representation of the Italian town and its people. The attractive design includes decorated borders around the illustrations and an old-fashioned typeface in brown against beige backgrounds with the look of parchment or vellum. (Picture book/nonfiction. 5-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780066238708
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 9/27/2005
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 6 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.00 (w) x 11.00 (h) x 0.25 (d)

Meet the Author

Richard Egielski is the Caldecott Medal-winning illustrator of Hey, Al and many other books for children, including the Tub People series by Pam Conrad. He is also the author and illustrator of Buz and Jazper, both New York Times Best Illustrated Books, Three Magic Balls, and The Gingerbread Boy. Mr. Egielski lives in Milford, New Jersey, with his wife and son.

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Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 21, 2006

    Not just for Kids and Saints

    This enjoyable picture book can be read by all ages who will appreciate the humor and medieval detail in Egielski's story. I particularly think that 7th grade teachers may effectively read this book aloud to their students as part of their medieval history unit.

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