|Posted by Nancy Carty Lepri on October 5, 2010 at 4:28 PM|
Below is the review of my dear friend and colleague, Cheryl Malandrino's new release.
by Cheryl C. Malandrinos
illustrated by Eugene Ruble
(Guardian Angel Publishing, August 2010)
Little Shepherd is a delightful story of thebirth of Christ, geared for the four- to eight-year-old reader, but is a taleto be enjoyed by those of any age.
The story of Jesus’ birth is toldthrough the eyes of Obed, a five-year-old shepherd boy who just received hisfirst flock of sheep to tend. Conscientious about his new duties, Obed becomesfearful after the evening skies brighten by a group of angels who arrive tospread the good news.
Obed notices his father displays no fear,and learning they must go to Bethlehem, the boy worries about the flock, but obeyshis elder. Hand in hand, they start their journey, and along the way, Obedquestions why they have left their sheep, concern of them utmost in his mind.
Arriving at a stable, Obed finds afather and mother watching over their baby, much as he guards his sheep. Hearingwolves howling in the distance makes Obed grow more worried about the animals.After paying homage to the baby, they head back to the fields, singing praisesand giving thanks to God.
Obed wonders why his father so happy andcoming upon his flock, he is astounded they are gathered together—not a onemissing—even though the wolves are nearby. Seeing his charges are safe, Obedrealizes it is indeed a magical night.
Though a wonderful Christmas story, thisbook will be enjoyed year round. Through a child’s narration, this tale is sureto help little ones relate more so to this celebrated event. The combination of Mr. Ruble’s colorfulillustrations and Ms. Malandrinos’ well-written prose unite this story into abook children of all ages will love and want to read repeatedly.