The One with the Scraggly Beard

The One with the Scraggly Beard

Elizabeth Withey


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A child tries to understand the life of a man he has seen sleeping under a bridge. The boy’s mother patiently answers his questions and explains how people’s life paths can be so different. The child observes the things he has in common with the man and wonders where his own path will lead.

The One With the Scraggly Beard is defined by a simple narrative in which a child’s curiosity and perceptiveness act as catalysts for understanding fear, suffering and resilience while exploring themes of homelessness, belonging and compassion. This unique book will speak to children and adults alike. A note from the author explains how the origin of this story is rooted in her own life.


Elizabeth Withey:

Elizabeth Withey is a journalist, author and visual artist. She grew up in rural Saskatchewan, reading books borrowed from the Wapiti Regional Library. A former Writer in Residence at Edmonton Public Library and staff writer and columnist at the Edmonton Journal, Elizabeth is now a producer for CBC Radio and lives in Calgary. The One with the Scraggly Beard was inspired by Withey’s son’s experience meeting his uncle, who has been living on the street since 2015.