The Tale of Angelino Brown

David Almond, illus. by Alex T. Smith. Candlewick, $16.99 (272p) ISBN 978-0-7636-9563-7
Bus driver Bert Brown feels like he’s having a heart attack at work, but the fluttering in his chest turns out to be a tiny angel lodged in his pocket. When a stunned Bert brings the creature home to his wife, Betty, she knows just what to do: fix him dinner, make him a little bed, and give him a fitting name. It doesn’t take long for the angel, whom they name Angelino, to become a beloved member of the couple’s family, as well as a popular student at the school where Betty works. But two villains are watching the angel’s every move, waiting for the opportunity to kidnap him. Almond (Harry Miller’s Run) once again works his magic to draw readers into a world of wonderful possibilities and dreadful obstacles, captured in Smith’s whimsical pencil drawings. He makes it clear that heroes, villains, and angels alike are products of their environments, and that a little nurturing (or angel companionship) is the best way to improve a person’s attitude and behavior. Almond’s dry wit will bring smiles, and his underlying message about good and evil may shake up some preconceived notions. Ages 8–12. (Mar.)
Reviewed on: 12/18/2017
Release date: 03/20/2018
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