A deft, merry retelling of one of the high deeds of the legendary Irish hero, by the author of last year's acclaimed Hounds of the Morrigan. A scene with a loving old servant, Gariv, tactfully trying to get Finn (who has a headache) out of his tent sets the comic tone of this lilting tale. Finn finally gets up when a giant arrives seeking aid: his king has mysteriously lost two newborn sons, and fears losing his third. Joined by eight tiny men with various talents (an honest thief; acute hearing, feeling, knowing, etc.), Finn arrives in the giant's kingdom in time to witness the theft of the third son by the king's sister, a witch, and by using the talent of all eight small men is able to restore the three babies to their grateful parents. Hearing Finn's story, Gariv observes, ""The small men did a lot--what did you do?"" To which Finn rejoins, ""I gave the orders."" In a generous, square format with carefully drawn, humorous black-and-white illustrations and ornaments embellishing almost every page, this is a handsome book. Some of the more sophisticated wit may escape younger children, but the action should keep them reading. Best of all, this would be perfect for sharing aloud.