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MY BROTHER, ANT by Betsy Byars


By Betsy Byars (Author) , Marc Simont (Illustrator)

Age Range: 5 - 7

Pub Date: March 1st, 1996
ISBN: 0-670-86664-4
Publisher: Viking

An effective pairing of author and illustrator in a disarming Easy-to-Read entry. Ant (short for Anthony) is the younger of two appealing brothers; Ant's older brother narrates four episodes that highlight their affectionate bond. In the first, Ant's big brother talks tough to a monster ("Listen up. Ant does not want you under his bed"), and Ant, not fooled, is comforted nevertheless. In a neat twist in the second tale, Ant turns out not to be lying about trouble between the brothers, smoothing the way for reconciliation; the third story is about reading together. In the fourth, the older brother believes that July is much too early for Ant's letter to Santa, but ends up admiring the message it contains: "Thank you for last Christmas. I still like my presents. Love, Ant." Byars (Tarot Says Beware, p. 1277, etc.) spins the tales in dialogue, and the pace never lags; Simont provides charming scenes of the boys together. (Picture book. 5-7)