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The Night of the Goat Children Hardcover – March 1, 1999


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Hardcover, March 1, 1999
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Dial; 1st edition (March 1, 1999)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0803718705
  • ISBN-13: 978-0803718708
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 9 x 11.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #3,706,516 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Girl power prevails in this expertly crafted story inspired by an event during the Thirty Years War (1618A1648). The small kingdom of Beda, with a population of goatherds and shepherds, is ruled by young, bold Princess Birgitta. When outlaws invade, the villagers and their animals retreat behind the high city walls, hoping to stave off the evil Ubo Skald and his vile crew. As the siege continues, Birgitta devises an ingenious and daring plan and, with the help of some plucky village children, she saves the day-and the kingdom. Lewis's (The Christmas of the Reddle Moon; A Hippopotamusn't) dramatic story has many of the hallmarks of a good fairy/folktale, from ogre-like bad guys to the protagonists' brilliant disguises, and his language is suggestive and concise. Natchev's (Forri the Baker) illustrations also create a folkloric atmosphere, combining acrylics and occasional bits of collage for a rich, textured effect. His scenes often demonstrate a depth that brings readers right into the action. The renderings of the princess's finery, the traditional peasant garb and a countryside saturated with thick foliage befits the fetchingly distinctive Black Forest setting. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

Grade 1-4-With the addition of a bold, clever (and lucky) princess and illustrations, an anecdote about the Thirty Years War becomes a successful picture book. The little kingdom of Beda is under siege from Ubo Skald and his band of outlaws. Fearing for her people and finding the advice of her elders useless, Princess Birgitta disguises herself as a hag and convinces the bandit leader that the princess who rules Beda is really a sorceress who can turn humans to goats and make them invulnerable. Some brave goatskin-covered children prove the latter while the hag/princess appears to become a she-goat. The superstitious bandits flee, the kingdom is saved, and a midnight feast is held to celebrate the ruse's success. Natchev's acrylics make the most of this material, with a flexible approach that allows for near caricature of the bandits, but preserves Birgitta's dignity. Some Renaissance details lend understated authenticity, but leave the action at center stage. Touches of rich red enliven most pages, even the night scene. History, action, and feminism, in an attractive mix.
Patricia Lothrop-Green, St. George's School, Newport, RI
Copyright 1999 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

After nearly three decades as a professor of economics, J. Patrick Lewis turned to poetry. He is the author of more than 75 children's books including A Hippopotamusn't (1990), BoshBlobberBosh (1998), Please Bury Me in the Library (2004), First Dog (2009), Spot the Plot (2009), and The House (2009).

He has recently been named the third U.S. Children's Poet Laureate (2011-2013) by the Poetry Foundation.

His books have been published by Creative Editions, Knopf, Atheneum, Dial, Harcourt, Little, Brown, National Geographic, Chronicle Books, Scholastic, Candlewick, Schwartz & Wade, Holiday House, Sleeping Bear Press, Wordsong/Boyds Mills Press, Dawn Publications, and others. Gulls Hold Up the Sky, his first book of adult poems, was published by Laughing Fire Press (2010).

Pat's children's poems have also appeared in CRICKET (26 times), SPIDER, LADYBUG, CICADA, ODYSSEY, RANGER RICK, HIGHLIGHTS FOR CHILDREN, Ms. Magazine, YOUR BIG BACKYARD, CREATIVE CLASSROOM, STORYTIME, STORYWORKS, CHICKADEE, AHOY, LANGUAGE ARTS, JOURNAL OF CHILDREN'S LITERATURE, BOOKBIRD, READING TODAY and over 100 anthologies. He wrote the 1992 National Children's Book Week poem, printed on one million bookmarks and distributed nationally.

Lewis has received numerous awards from the American Library Association, the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators, and others. He was the recipient of the 2010-11 National Council of Teachers of English (NCTE) Excellence in Children's Poetry Award, presented every two years.

WHERE I'LL BE NEXT--Schools, Bookstores, Conferences

October 14-16, 2011 Poetry Foundation--TED Lecture Chicago, Illiniois
October 23-25, 2011 NY State Reading Assn. Rye Brook, New York
October 28-31, 2011 Keystone State Reading Assn. Lancaster, Pennsylvania
November 5, 2011 Buckeye Book Fair Wooster, Ohio
November 8, 2011 Ashland University Ashland, Ohio
November 15-16, 2011 St. Joseph's College Rensselaer, Indiana
November 17-20, 2011 NCTE Convention Chicago, Illinois
December 1, 2010 Hillview Elementary Newark, Ohio
December 8, 2011 West Chester University (Dan Darigan) West Chester, PA
January 18, 2012 Richard Avenue Elementary Grove City, Ohio
January 24, 2012 Fouse Elementary Westerville, Ohio
March 1-3, 2012 Charlotte Huck Ch. Lit. Conference Redlands, California
April 3-5, 2012 Holland Hall Primary Tulsa, Oklahoma
April 12, 2012 Washington-Centerville Public Library Centerville, Ohio
April 13, 2012 Stingley Elementary Centerville, Ohio
April 17-25, 2012 Anglo-American School Moscow, Russia
April 29-May 2, 2012 IRA Convention Chicago, Illinois
May 10, 2012 Wynford Elementary Bucyrus, Ohio
March 22, 2013 OCTELA Conference Columbus, Ohio

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