Saint Francis of Assisi

Demi. World Wisdom/Wisdom Tales, $19.95 (56p) ISBN 978-1-937786-04-5
The beloved saint gets colorful treatment from Demi, who retells his biography at length, beginning at the beginning, when Francis was born in a stable in Assisi in 1182. Francis’s early life gets extended treatment, with the depiction of medieval military scenes. Those unfamiliar with the details of Francis’s life—he is credited with beginning the use of a Nativity scene to commemorate Christmas—will find it in edifying visual detail, including Francis’s legendary encounter with the wolf of Gubbio. The narrative can be repetitive, but it provides a great excuse for the compelling visuals. Even the end papers are lavishly illustrated, with parade-like ranks of animals along with the words to Francis’s prayers, including the Canticle of the Sun. As usual, Demi’s mixed-media illustrations feature intricate decorative borders, along with lots and lots of animals. A visual feast and tribute to a Christian figure said to have lived like Jesus. Ages 6–up. (Oct.)
Reviewed on: 09/17/2012
Release date: 10/01/2012
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