What made the Great Antonio so great? He weighed as much as a horse! He once wrestled a bear. He could devour twenty-five roasted chickens at one sitting. In this whimsical book, beloved author and illustrator Elise Gravel tells the true story of Antonio Barichievich, the larger-than-life Montreal strongman who had muscles as big as his heart.
In kindergarten Elise was popular because she could draw princesses with long, spiral curls. Then in high school, girls asked her to draw their dream guys, and she became very talented at drawing muscles and chest hair, which came in handy for this book.
One of Elise's favorite authors is Roald Dahl. He got her interested in unusual people and animals--anyone who is strange, different, or funny.
In her hometown of Montreal, everyone knew and loved the great Antonio, the gentle giant who lived outside the donut shop. He claimed to have been one of the strongest men in the world and to be able to talk to aliens with his braids. After his death, it was revealed that many of Antonio's wild stories were true: he had a letter from President Bill Clinton and photos of himself with celebrities like Liza Minnelli, Sophia Loren, and Johnny Carson.
Elizabeth Bird's A Fuse #8 Production 2016 Fictionalized Non-Fiction for Kids
"A tribute as heartfelt as it is joyous” -Kirkus ReviewsSTARRED REVIEW
"Gravel gives us a funny, very kid-friendly story about a gentle giant, someone who twirled children around on his braids, turning himself into a human merry-go-round for their amusement." -School Library Journal Good Comics for Kids
"What’s to be made of lives that don’t go the way they were supposed to? Gravel shows that they’re worth paying attention to." -Publishers Weekly
"Kids will be taken by this larger-than-life figure, who is still beloved in Montreal, the city the Great Antonio called home." -Booklist
"Gravel’s cartoonish art is graphically sophisticated." -Montreal Gazette
"In this innovative portrait?not quite a biography yet not quite a legend?Gravel affectionately places Antonio in the Paul Bunyan tradition of mighty men." -Horn Book Magazine
"A modern tale for a new audience." -Mom Read It