Look for this book to be on the Awards shortlists this fall.

The One and Only IvanThe One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
My rating: 5 of 5 stars

Another book with an aura of buzz around it. In fact, Ivan(the real gorilla) just died this week. I was thrilled when it appeared on the library new browsing shelf!
The format of this book was short bursts of prose. But the story flowed and flew beautifully. I actually lost myself in the characters and forgot they were not human. We try to teach “personification” in our writing assignments in 5th grade and this will be a MUST read-aloud to highlight that writing style!!
For years I have been finding myself losing favor with the concept of zoos. I am not an animal activist in anyway. However, after becoming a SCUBA diver and seeing this frontier and it’s wildlife unrestrained, I am increasingly uncomfortable with the confinement of animals in the artificial habitat of zoos. Well this book took it a step further and set these compassionate animals in a scudzy low-rent mall circus. In this setting, even the zoo looked like paradise.
Another book that deals with primates being removed from their natural habitat is “Hurt Go Happy” by Ginny Rorby. I am thinking about putting together a unit combining fiction and non-fiction titles about animal rights

Don’t miss this book and recommend it to every child you meet.

View all my reviews


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