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list price: $18.95
edition:Hardcover
published: Sep 2010
ISBN:9780888999771

Book of Big Brothers

by Cary Fagan, illustrated by Luc Melanson

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siblings, humorous stories, boys & men
5 of 5
1 rating
rated!
rated!
list price: $18.95
edition:Hardcover
published: Sep 2010
ISBN:9780888999771
Description

What is it like being the youngest of three brothers? In this wonderful story author Cary Fagan gives us a true-to-life picture of growing up in such a family -- from the adventure and fun to the mischief and mishaps. The brothers camp out in the backyard, accidentally set the neighbor's tree on fire, play football in the living room and even hold a funeral for their pet lizard. And although the older brothers can be mean sometimes, the youngest is usually in on the fun and delights in their crazy life together. Luc Melanson's lively retro-style illustrations are a perfect complement, making this an utterly captivating story.

About the Authors

Cary Fagan

CARY FAGAN is an award-winning author for children and adults. In 2014 Cary was awarded the Vicky Metcalf Award for Literature for Young People for his body of work. Cary was born and raised in Toronto, where he lives with his family.

Author profile page >

Luc Melanson has illustrated a number of award-winning children’s books. In 2002 his book Le grand voyage de monsier (The Grand Journey of Mr. Man) won the Governor General’s Award for Children’s Illustration and was also selected for the IBBY Canada Honour List. He lives in Laval, QC.
Author profile page >
Contributor Notes

Cary Fagan is an award-winning author of books for children and adults. He has won the Vicky Metcalf Award for Children’s Literature, the Jewish Book Award, the IODE Jean Throop Book Award and the Marilyn Baillie Picture Book Award, among others. His many books include the picture book A Cage Went in Search of a Bird, illustrated by Banafsheh Erfanian (“An original and thought-provoking exploration of the rhythms of friendship —Kirkus, starred review) and the short novel The Hollow Under the Tree, an Ontario Library Association Best Bet. Cary lives with his family in Toronto.

LUC MELANSON won a Governor General’s Literary Award for illustrating The Grand Journey of Mr. Man by Gilles Tibo. He has illustrated many books, including Rosario’s Fig Tree by Charis Wahl. Book of Big Brothers by Cary Fagan and Pink by Nan Gregory were both finalists for the Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator’s Award. Luc lives in Laval, Quebec, with his family.

Recommended Age, Grade, and Reading Levels
Age:
4 to 7
Grade:
p to 2
Reading age:
4 to 7
Awards
  • Short-listed, Amelia Frances Howard-Gibbon Illustrator's Award Honour Book
Editorial Reviews

...fast paced adventurous book about growing up together and learning to get along.

— The Midwest Review

...will make readers giggle with delight.

— SLJ

...the adventures...all serve to highlight the deep bonds of affection among the three boys.

— Quill & Quire

...an action-packed tale of mischief and mayhem.

— The Waterloo Record

...recounts the mischief and mishaps of being the youngest of three brothers...

— Calgary Sun

Reading this book is a lot like listening to a friend and his brothers swap favorite family stories.

— PW

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Reader Reviews

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Canadian Children's  Book Centre
Librarian review

Book of Big Brothers

Cary Fagan’s The Book of Big Brothers, written in first person narrative, engages readers of all ages. The concept of a memory becoming a story is a gift often shared over generations among families. Through recollecting the action-packed adventures of the brothers’ camp outs in the backyard or “riding a bike to the Rockies” with two older brothers, Fagan epitomizes his tales of brotherly love in the legendary escapade of lighting a tree on fire in their backyard. The brothers quarrel, share, tease and torment each other. Awardwinning Luc Melanson’s colourful illustrations magically capture their facial expressions and non-stop action. Imagine the repercussions of breaking an heirloom while playing forbidden living room football; such incidents beget the brotherhood of silence and collusion, and reinforce the age old code of “No one tells mother!” Cary Fagan read from draft pages at Queenston School during TD Canadian Children’s Book Week 2008. Spontaneous laughter and grins erupted as Cary’s personal recollections of growing up the youngest of three brothers caused the children and their teachers to nod or high five in sympathy and understanding. As an introduc- tion to a writer’s workshop for adults or to stimulate the telling of “family” stories in a classroom, this book is a winner!

Another excellent first person narrative by Fagan, The Big Swim, for pre-adolescent readers, explores a first-time camper’s painful but memorable experiences set forth in the main character, Ethan. “We knew he was a bad kid even before he showed up,” Ethan states upon the arrival of mysterious Zachary. Ethan offers Zachary his friendship, but Zachary manages to cause mayhem for both the camp and Ethan when he rebels against Camp White Birch rules, particularly regarding “The Big Swim.” Caught between his desire to do the right and honourable thing, and still follow the rules, Ethan finds that camp allows him to grow in many different ways. As a read-aloud story before the end of school in June or part of a book display encouraging summer reading, Fagan’s book will entice youngsters to try a camp experience for themselves!

Ellen Donogh is a teacher-librarian at Queenston School and Luxton School in Winnipeg.

Source: The Canadian Children's Bookcentre. Fall 2010. Volume 33 No. 4.

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