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THE SONG OF FRANCIS by Tomie dePaola Kirkus Star


by Tomie dePaola & illustrated by Tomie dePaola

Age Range: 3 - 6

Pub Date: Feb. 1st, 2009
ISBN: 978-0-399-25210-5
Publisher: Putnam

A beautiful celebration of simplicity and joy for the very youngest children. Francis is full of the love of God and wants to sing out, but he is alone. Brother Son and Sister Moon join him, as do all the birds of the air in every color: red, orange, yellow, green, violet, brown, black, white. The birds sing with him, and the angels come to listen: “Love, love, love.” Tomorrow, he tells the small angel who is always with him, “I shall sing again.” Using painted collage on watercolor paper, dePaola achieves a vivid and muscular color, and Matisse-inspired shapes form birds, angels, stars and growing things; Francis is a barefoot, tonsured monk. The center spread is wordless, full of angels, stars, birds, sun and moon in a pale gold sky, the whole surpassingly sweet. With this effort, the artist refines the saint’s Canticle of the Sun/Canticle of the Creatures to an irreducible essence of joy in all creation. Glorious. (Picture book. 3-6)