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Beatrice's Goat Hardcover – February 1, 2001


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Frequently Bought Together

Beatrice's Goat + One Hen: How One Small Loan Made a Big Difference (Citizenkid) + Wangari's Trees of Peace: A True Story from Africa
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers; 1.2.2001 edition (February 1, 2001)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0689824602
  • ISBN-13: 978-0689824609
  • Product Dimensions: 9.9 x 10.3 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (64 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #503,337 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

Amazon.com Review

When her family's fat, sleek new goat arrives in her poor Ugandan village, little Beatrice hugs her close and whispers, "Mama says you are our lucky gift...." And indeed it is true. Soon the goat bears two kids and provides enough milk to both feed the family and sell for profit. Until the goat arrived, life was very hard for Beatrice and her five brothers and sisters. The family could not afford to send the children to school, and it was difficult to make ends meet. Magically this one small animal, one of 12 given the village, opens up a new world of health and prosperity. Before the year is out, Beatrice happily realizes her dream of becoming a school girl and her delighted family moves into a sturdy new house.

Based on the true account of one family who received aid from Heifer Project International, a charitable organization that donates livestock to poor communities around the world, this moving story is eloquently and gracefully recounted. Vividly evoking the lush tropical landscape of central Africa, Lohstoeter's rich, deeply-hued illustrations perfectly complement the text and make Beatrice and her world affectingly real. Although she may live far removed from the comfortable middle-class lives of many young readers, it is clear that Beatrice is a girl of unusual heart and, like any child, filled with hopes and dreams. In her afterword Hillary Rodham Clinton writes, "Beatrice's Goat is a heartwarming reminder that families, wherever they live, can change their lives for the better." A portion of the publisher's proceeds goes to support the Heifer Project. (Ages 4 to 8) --Marianne Painter

From Publishers Weekly

An impoverished family begins to flourish after receiving a special gift--of the four-legged variety--in this uplifting picture book set in western Uganda. Beatrice longs to attend school with other village children, but instead she must tend her five younger siblings and help her mother in the fields. Everything starts to change, however, when Beatrice and her family receive a goat, "a lucky gift," says her mother, from a charitable organization. As the months pass, the animal provides the family with sweet milk to enjoy and sell and a pair of kids that will eventually be sold as well. With the goat's bounty, the family soon has enough money to send Beatrice to school. McBrier's tale, inspired by actual events, succeeds in demonstrating the positive ripple effect of the efforts of one organization, but an afterword by Hillary Rodham Clinton sounds like an advertisement for Heifer Project (the donors of the goat). Perhaps the volume's greatest strength is Lohstoeter's (How the Leopard Got His Spots) sunny acrylic paintings, which capture the hues of dusty thatched huts and verdant banana groves of the African landscape. Sweet-faced Beatrice and her mother take center stage, wearing colorful, traditional clothes, and their bond is palpable. Ages 4-8. (Feb.) Little Rock, Ark.-based Heifer Project International, a nonprofit group working to end global hunger by providing livestock and training to people in need.

Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information, Inc.


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Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5 stars
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My 5 year old adores this book.
K. Belkin
You can't do better than a book with a great message, that also has a charming story that kids love to read again and again.
Preston Bealle
A wonderful compliment to teaching children about the world.
Robert Cannon

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

44 of 44 people found the following review helpful By Roz Levine on May 5, 2001
Format: Hardcover
Beatrice lives in the village of Kisinga, Uganda with her mother and five younger brothers and sisters. Life is hard and the family is very poor. Beatrice dreams of going to school, but knows that the family probably will never have the money for books and a uniform, so that she can attend. And then one day everything changes; the family receives a goat. Beatrice names the goat Mugisa, which means lucky because her mother said the goat was their lucky gift. Soon the goat gives birth to two kids and the family's life begins to change. They have milk to drink and some to sell and in time, they are able to sell one of the kids to improve their lives even more. They build a new sturdy hut with a steel roof that won't leak and are even able to make Beatrice's dream of going to school come true..... Based on the true story of how one family was helped by Heifer Project International, an organization that donates livestock to poor communities, Page McBrier's beautiful and engaging picture book shows how different life can be in other parts of the world and how little it takes to bring hope and changes to developing countries. Her eloquent text is complimented by Lori Lohstoeter's rich and expressive illustrations and together, in a very simple, gentle way, they show youngsters how something, even as small as a goat, can lift a family out of desperate poverty and give them a better life. Perfect for children 4-8, Beatrice's Goat is an uplifting story told with great insight and a wonderful addition to all home bookshelves.
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20 of 20 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on January 31, 2001
Format: Hardcover
This is a wonderful book which will inform children who live in the USA that many, many children in the world do not have access to free education. This book tells a story of how just one goat from Heifer Project International not only allows Beatrice to finally go to school, but the income from selling the goats milk also helps to improve her family's life. The children who read this book will have an insight on what life is like for children who live in Africa. The illustrations are beautiful and very colorful.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on February 16, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
If you are trying to teach your children the value of volunteerism and sharing this book is for you! Not only is the story genuine and touching but it supports one of the best charities in existence today. Children all over the world have so much less then children born in the US and with just a simple gift of a goat you can help to change a family's life. What the story doesn't tell you are how goats/cows/chickens/pigs, etc. have also helped keep families from "selling" their young daughters into prostitution to support their families. If you want to do something worthwhile for a family much less fortunate then your own - - BUY A GOAT - - you'll be so happy you did.
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By Reader on August 2, 2001
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Our 5 & 7 year olds love this glimpse into a life so different from their own, and loved seeing the work of Heifer International in action. This is a great way to show youngish children how a small action can have a big result, and how people can take a small opportunity, and with hard work, turn it into something that can change their life. Written with a warm gentleness, this is definitely a book for sharing.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 31, 2002
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Buy this book and then donate a goat through the heifer foundation in a child's name. Together they make a great gift. Be creative: throw in some goat cheese and other goat items and make it a gift for a whole family.
The book is a true story of how a little girl's family got a goat that, more or less, changed their lives. Very cute story and a good cause.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By Elizabeth E. Nugent on May 4, 2007
Format: Hardcover
This book is recommended for ages 4-8, but we checked it out of the library for my three-year-old and it's clear we will have to buy it. She wants to read it every day, and we have promised her that we will buy a goat for a girl in Africa this Christmas. The illustrations are quite beautiful, and the story is so sweet that I often find myself tearing up on the last page, even though I've read it daily for a couple of weeks now.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By Preston Bealle on April 2, 2001
Format: Hardcover
You can't do better than a book with a great message, that also has a charming story that kids love to read again and again. My daughter is 6 and has read this book many times. It's made her appreciate what she gets for dinner when she realizes that a whole family's food supply could be profoundly affected by owning one goat!
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7 of 8 people found the following review helpful By DCDeirdre on June 8, 2005
Format: Hardcover
This is the wonderful account of Beatrice Birra who came from one of the poorest families in the Ugandan village of Kissinga. She longed to go to school but her family couldn't afford to send her. All of this changed after they received a dairy goat as part of a shipment sent to Africa by a 3rd World development organisation. She won a scholarship to a high school in Kampala and is now on a scholarship at Connecticut College. And I just read that she travelled to Ireland to thank the farmer who originally donated the goat. Sounds like a really great person.
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