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A stirring tale of war, courage and the bullfight, set in Andalucia during the Spanish Civil War. Horrified to learn that the corrida involves not just a dance, but a death, six-year-old farm child Antonito vows to save his beloved bull Paco from such a bloody fate. But when he sneaks out to free Paco and the rest of his father’s herd early one morning, he becomes a witness to the bombing of his village by Franco’s forces, and the massacre of its surviving inhabitants. With his innocence devastated, how will Antonito recover from what he has seen? Surprising, powerful and moving, this is an unforgettable portrait of violence and recovery, examined through the bond between a boy and a bull. Another must-read from a master writer, illustrated with Michael Foreman’s fabulous artwork.
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AR book level: 5.0; Middle years; 2.0 points
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