|Bloomsbury Academic Trade|
the observer Sun 14 December 2008
Published in aid of children's creative writing charity the Threshold Prize, this timely collection is the culmination of an extensive survey of public figures and private citizens in which the subjects identify their favourite heroes and religious figures. The resulting list is predictably catholic, with those celebrated ranging from St Francis of Assisi, favoured by Archbishop Desmond Tutu, and Abraham Lincoln, cited by author Philip Ziegler, to the decidedly non-famous Granny Pop, who is selected for recognition by her grandson Toby, aged 11. Depth has been sacrificed for breadth - each hero is summed up in a brief paragraph or verse - but the thrifty parcels of text have been carefully edited into revealing, inspiring nuggets.