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Amzat & His Brothers Hardcover – March 1, 1993


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Middle Grade Action & Adventure
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Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Newbery Medalist Fox notes in her preface that these folktales were relayed to her by Vecchi, a friend who grew up in a mountain town near Bologna. Gracefully transferring the spoken word to the printed page, Fox incorporates into her narrative lively details, analogies and similes (a large white ewe weeps "tears as big as pearls"). In the title story, two greedy brothers get their just deserts after trying to steal the home that is their younger sibling's birthright. Curiously, the division between bad and good is muddied when the youngest takes advantage of an innocent shepherd in order to best his nasty brothers. Less distinctive are the other tales, one of which echoes The Bremen Town Musicians . In the third, luck brings a poor woman and her dim-witted son a cache of gold that changes their lives. Those familiar with the impressive work of McCully, the 1993 Caldecott Medalist, may be disappointed by her sketchy black-and-white drawings--though their simplified flair adds to the overall folksy tone. Ages 8-10.
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-5-- Fox retells three Italian folktales that were told to her by a friend who heard them from his grandfather when he was a child growing up in a pre-World War II Italian village. The tales are variations of familiar stories: "Mezgalten," for example, contains elements of "The Brementown Musicians" and "The Wolf and the Kids." Acts of violence may disturb some adults, as in the title story when Amzat and his wife trick his brothers into murdering their wives and then cause the drowning of the brothers. The third story shows the prejudice of villagers toward a woman and her son because of their habit of never bathing and the dull wits of the son. While the woman and son end their days living in a palace (and eventually learning the art of bathing), and the worst of their tormentors end up poorly, the depiction of the heckling is harsh. The people in these stories seem to be more rooted in real life than the usual archetypal folktale characters. A good collection of the region's lore would be welcome, but this isn't the one. McCully's pen-and-ink sketches add little. --Connie C. Rockman, The Ferguson Library, Stamford, CT
Copyright 1993 Reed Business Information, Inc.
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 9 and up
  • Lexile Measure: 990L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 67 pages
  • Publisher: Scholastic; 1st edition (March 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0531054624
  • ISBN-13: 978-0531054628
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 7.2 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 11.7 ounces
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,271,293 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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