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Brother Francis and the Friendly Beasts

Brother Francis and the Friendly Beasts

by Margaret Hodges, Ted Lewin (Illustrator)

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Francis has been born into a wealthy family in Assisi. Increasingly troubled by the intense poverty around him, the lad sells some family items and gives the money to a poor church. Francis's father is disgraced by his son's actions and orders him to leave home with nothing but a coarse robe. Stripped of his worldly possessions, Brother Francis is free to walk the roads of Italy helping the needy, preaching God's word and befriending the animals. Hodges writes with reverence, drawing the kind man's portrait by skillfully weaving together the many legends surrounding his life and times. Lewin captures in fine detail the old Italian villages and the countryside's verdant, natural beauty. His watercolors of colorfully frocked peasants and sun-washed stonework recall Sargent's work in this medium. Ages 6-8. (Sept.)
School Library Journal - School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-- A superficial biography of Saint Francis of Assisi, here always called Brother Francis. Born to wealth and ease (his birthdate is never given), Francis became aware of poverty and want after an illness. Leaving home, he adopted the life of wandering preacher, finding joy in all of nature's creatures. There is no attempt at an understanding of the man's character, nor of his religious inclinations (except for his reenactment of the birth of Christ using the animals and peasants of his village to act out Biblical roles), nor a probe into his motivations for the choice of his lifestyle. Lewin's somber full-color watercolors give a feeling of time and place. However, the sudden shift from a young Francis to an elderly monk, totally unexplained in either text or illustration, is unsettling. Children interested in this man will find little to enlighten them here. --Eva Elisabeth Von Ancken, Trinity Pawling School, NY

Product Details

Atheneum Books for Young Readers
Publication date:
Edition description:
1st ed
Product dimensions:
8.27(w) x 10.29(h) x 0.41(d)
Age Range:
6 - 8 Years

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