The Angel of Mill Street

The Angel of Mill Street

by Frances Ward Weller, Robert J. Blake
     
 
It is a cold, snowy Christmas Eve on Mill Street, and little Frances Rosalie yearns to begin the celebration. But not without Uncle Ambrose. Every year it is Uncle Ambrose who makes Christmas sing, with his eloquent fiddle and his songs about angels. But as evening wears on with no sign of him Francis Rosalie fears that he may be in trouble. The snow can be deadly

Overview

It is a cold, snowy Christmas Eve on Mill Street, and little Frances Rosalie yearns to begin the celebration. But not without Uncle Ambrose. Every year it is Uncle Ambrose who makes Christmas sing, with his eloquent fiddle and his songs about angels. But as evening wears on with no sign of him Francis Rosalie fears that he may be in trouble. The snow can be deadly for a man with a crippled leg, and even Ambrose's warm heart and fiery spirit are no match for the driving wind and cold. "Oh God, please take care of Uncle Ambrose!" prays Frances Rosalie. It seems that nothing short of a Christmas miracle will bring Ambrose safely home. But who would have guessed that that miracle would be a great, black dog? Frances Ward Weller and Robert J. Blake, author and illustrator of Riptide, team up again to create a most unforgettable angel in this enchanting Christmas tale.

Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
The weather this Christmas Eve is terrible. Snow is falling, the streets are slippery and it is very cold. Frances Rosalie is worried about her Uncle Ambrose who earns his living playing the fiddle. He hasn't come home yet. His crippled leg makes it treacherous for him to be out walking in such a storm. The family frets. The pictures depict Ambrose's struggle to get home. When he slips and falls, a large black dog arrives to help him out. Eventually he arrives home, chilled but safe. Ambrose remarks on his rescuer, a big black dog who runs off. Later when the town folk are questioned, none can ever remember seeing such a creature-perhaps it was a guardian angel after all. Blake's pictures ably depict the gray cold outdoors and the shadowy black dog watching over Ambrose. The endpaper colors, the page colors and the binding pick up the tones in the paintings and make a lovely package.
School Library Journal
Gr 1-4--An original tale about an Irish family, set in New England "some hundred years ago." Uncle Ambrose is expected at his sister's house on Christmas Eve. The musician of the family, he is the one who makes "Christmas sing" for his niece, Frances. However, Uncle Ambrose has a bad leg, and when an evening's snow turns into a blizzard, the excited activity around the house turns to worry. He finally arrives, saved by a huge black dog that no one has ever seen before. The "angel" of Mill Street disappears into the night and the family goes to bed. The narrative has the rhythm and pacing of oral storytelling. On each double-page spread, the text is set in a narrow vertical strip next to a large illustration. While the text describes what is going on in the house, the paintings show Ambrose's trek, with the black dog always shadowing him, making the story read as if it were being simultaneously told aloud and acted out. Two wordless, double-page illustrations at the climax (Ambrose's tumble into a snowbank and rescue) add to the meticulous structure of the book. Blake's watercolors, with the blue hues of the outside set against the yellow hues of indoors and the increasingly obscuring and wind-blown snow, add nicely to this cozy and old-fashioned Christmas story.--Nina Lindsay, Oakland Public Library, CA

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780399231339
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
10/05/1998
Pages:
1
Product dimensions:
8.88(w) x 11.28(h) x 0.40(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

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