Cover image for The tale of Urso Brunov : little father of all bears
Title:
The tale of Urso Brunov : little father of all bears
Author:
Jacques, Brian.
Personal Author:
Publication Information:
New York : Philomel Books, [2003]

©2003
Physical Description:
42 unnumbered pages ; 29 cm
Summary:
Urso Brunov or Little Father, a bear the size of a thumb, saves a group of animals from a misguided baggy-trousered crybaby known as the Lord of all Sands.
Language:
English
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 4.0 1.0 73790.
Genre:
Added Author:
ISBN:
9780399237621
Format :
Book

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Summary

Summary

This tall tale from Redwallcreator Brian Jacques features a brand new hero: Urso Brunov, the Little Father of All Bears. The strongest, wisest, bravest bear in the world, he is also the smallest, no bigger than the size of your thumb. Other animals of the forest stand in awe of him-except one: a mustached monster who captures four of Urso's bears and puts them in his zoo, but who learns all too soon that the Little Father is truly a force to be reckoned with. On his way to rescue the lost bears, Urso Brunov matches wits with a tribe of boars, teaches manners to a billygoat, skims across the Deep River on a wooden flute, and finally confronts the Lord of All Sands. He'll get those bears back, never fear-believe him, for he is Urso Brunov!


Author Notes

Brian Jacques was born in Liverpool, England on June 15, 1939. After he finished St. John's School at the age of fifteen, he became a merchant seaman and travelled to numerous ports including New York, Valparaiso, San Francisco, and Yokohama. Tiring of the lonely life of a sailor, he returned to Liverpool where he worked as a railway fireman, a longshoreman, a long-distance truck driver, a bus driver, a boxer, a police constable, a postmaster, and a stand-up comic. During the sixties, he was a member of the folk singing group The Liverpool Fishermen. He wrote both poetry and music, but he began his writing career in earnest as a playwright. His three stage plays Brown Bitter, Wet Nellies, and Scouse have been performed at the Everyman Theatre.

He wrote Redwall for the children at the Royal Wavertree School for the Blind in Liverpool, where he delivered milk as a truck driver. His style of writing is very descriptive, because of the nature of his first audience, for whom he painted pictures with words, so that they could see them in their imaginations. After Alan Durband, his childhood English teacher, read Redwall, he showed it to a publisher without telling Jacques. This event led to a contract for the first five books in the Redwall series. He also wrote the Castaways of the Flying Dutchman series. He died on February 5, 2011.

(Bowker Author Biography)


Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Gr. 2-4, younger for reading aloud. Urso, Little Father of All Brunov Bears, is the mightiest, wisest, and strongest of any living creature, even though he's no bigger than a thumb. He proves his mettle when he must retrieve four little bears who escape hibernation and are kidnapped and taken to a desert zoo by the Lord of All Sands.acques displays his usual flare for animal characters and clever details in this nicely packaged original folktale, with richly hued artwork that enlivens the story. Although several of the pictures don't quite match the accompanying text (Urso's fine red coat appears to be a yellow shirt on the opening spread), children may overlook the discrepancies in the face of Urso's delightful ingenuity, as when he uses a goose feather and a flute to make a sailboat. Adding to the charm is the small circle in the upper right corner of each spread, which becomes part of a flipbook of Urso dancing. A colorful initiation toacques' animal-fantasy magic. --Julie Cummins Copyright 2003 Booklist


Publisher's Weekly Review

Despite the lengthiness of his text, Jacques delivers just the swashbuckling adventure that fans of his Redwall novels might expect. His mighty, thumb-size bear hero, Urso Brunov, crosses mountains and deserts, defeats a despot and rescues the similarly diminutive compatriots he has traveled miles to find. Dressed like a Cossack, Urso sets out to bring back four errant bears from his tribe. "I will find them," he declares, and adds, with appealing braggadocio, "Believe me, for I am Urso Brunov!" From conversations with animals, the moon and the wind, Urso Brunov learns that his bears may have been taken by men, to the Lord of All Sands in "the place of the Lightning Flash and Two Cartwheels"-a legend that turns out to describe the three letters "Z-O-O." There the fez-wearing, pot-bellied Lord of All Sands holds the captured animals at his pleasure, but Urso confronts the evildoer in his dining hall, ties "special moustache knots" that restrain the villain, and an especially triumphant wordless spread shows the liberated animals. Deft characterization and many humorous asides add to the celebratory mood. In dynamic single- and double-page spreads, Natchev's (The Hobyahs) watercolors revel in playing with scale as well as texture. Almost tactile renderings of snow-covered trees, brittle leaves, wrinkled pachyderm skin and shining brass enhance the story's immediacy. Ages 4-8. (Sept.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved


School Library Journal Review

K-Gr 3-This long-winded faux folktale concerns "a tribe of bears called the Brunov" who are "only the size of your thumb!" One year, four little bears set out in search of sunshine and warmth instead of staying safely at home and sleeping through the winter. So, Urso Brunov, the "Little Father of All Bears," has to rescue them. His trip takes him from snowy woods to high mountains and dry deserts. He meets other animals (normal sized) and tricks, bullies, or cajoles them into helping him. Urso discovers the bears and many other animals trapped in a zoo. He rescues them all and leaves the guards and their leader imprisoned in the cages. Jacques's plot has a traditional folktale pattern and his choice of language and the frequent use of repetition (particularly the protagonist's admonition that others should "Believe me, for I am Urso Brunov!") enhance this feel. Urso is a typical folktale hero, plucky, brave, self-confident, and successful. Unfortunately, the very predictability of the story, along with its length, may make it difficult for the book to find an appreciative audience. Children young enough to enjoy Natchev's richly colored and beautifully composed paintings may find it hard to sit through the lengthy text, while older fans of the author's work will likely be disappointed by the slim story.-Lisa Dennis, The Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, PA (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.