I couldn’t resist one more St. Patrick’s day book review even though it will be too late for anyone to check it out in time for the big day itself. This one is more touching than most I have read so the happy good morale should make it worth the read for most parents.
This story begins long ago in a small village where we find a smiling old man name Pat. He was a harpist, and a good one at that! Pat is humble and kind and willing to play his music for all kinds of events whether the people can pay him or not. Well, young Tom, who was trained in the art by old Pat thinks the man is crazy for not making more money from his skills. Old Pat says “I am rich in friends, and that is enough.” well, one day the king holds a harping contest (you know, because they had a lot of those back in olden days of course) and our two friends decide to give it a go. Mean young Tom decides that old Pat just might beat him and breaks a string on his harp when he isn’t looking. Poor poor old Pat has no extras, he can’t afford them! He knows he won’t be able to win the contest now, but is going to give it a try anyway.
By this time, the wood is dark and as everyone knows, there are Leprechauns lurking there ready to play tricks on people for mean sport. Suddenly our musicians hear a cry for help. Unable to ignore the plea, old Pat goes to help the poor soul while Tom high-tails it out of there to safety. Good thing for Pat, Leprechauns are nice if you help them out of a jam. Especially when you are as humble and kind as Pat was. Just wait and see how that little Leprechaun decides to return the favor to our generous friend!
The pictures are thoughtfully done and most pages have an intricate border around them. There are 16 four leaf clovers hidden in this book for kids to find. You won’t find any beautiful maidens or even cute furry animals in this one- so I think my daughters weren’t as excited about it as they might have been… but, as the mother, I get to pick the books we read sometimes and the story is so great, that I would force-feed it to my daughters if I had to. (I mean, I don’t mind drawings of kind old men, but it’s not a super draw for my girls just yet… sigh!) This is one of those stories that you hope is true; that good wins and kindness matters. So, while I haven’t had to make my girls finish this story with me, they also haven’t asked me to read it on their own. Which kind of makes me sad, but I will keep trying. Repeat after me… Kindness matters more than princesses!
- Author: Pamela Duncan Edwards
- Illustrator:Henry Cole
- Publisher: Scholastic Inc.
- Copyright: 2005