The Three Brothers

Carolyn Croll, Author Putnam Publishing Group $14.95 (0p) ISBN 978-0-399-22195-8
In her second book, a retelling of a folktale with German and Latvian roots, Tomie dePaola protegee Croll looks no further than her own backyard--Pennsylvania Dutch country--for artistic inspiration. The bright, clear colors and stylized folk art motifs provide a comely backdrop for the story of an elderly farmer facing a dilemma, namely, to which of his three sons he should leave the family farm. In good folktale tradition, the old man devises a contest--here, to see who can best fill the barn before the day is done. The eldest fills it with livestock, the middle son uses hay, but it's Amos, the youngest (naturally), who wins with his clever use of a candle, filling the now-darkened barn with light. Amos doesn't want the farm for himself, but chooses to continue sharing it with his brothers, a decision thoroughly in keeping with the cozy, homespun tone set by the illustrations. Ages 4-8. (Sept.)
Reviewed on: 09/02/1991
Release date: 09/01/1991
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