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Publisher's Summary

Ivan is an easygoing gorilla. Living at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, he has grown accustomed to humans watching him through the glass walls of his domain. He rarely misses his life in the jungle. In fact, he hardly ever thinks about it at all.
Instead, Ivan thinks about TV shows he's seen and about his friends Stella, an elderly elephant, and Bob, a stray dog. But mostly Ivan thinks about art and how to capture the taste of a mango or the sound of leaves with color and a well-placed line.
Then he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from her family, and she makes Ivan see their home - and his own art - through new eyes. When Ruby arrives, change comes with her, and it's up to Ivan to make it a change for the better.
Katherine Applegate blends humor and poignancy to create Ivan's unforgettable first-person narration in a story of friendship, art, and hope.
©2012 Katherine Applegate (P)2013 HarperCollins Publishers
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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By Ed on 09-03-13

Very nice story

I often listen/read kids' books with my 10-year-old daughter and usually like them. The One and Only Ivan was no exception. It's one of this year's Sunshine State Books for 3rd-5th graders. They (Florida education officials) select 15 books each year and we've yet to come across one that hasn't been excellent. This book teaches about kindness and the importance of "peer" interaction. The chapters in the book were numerous and short. The story snippets were organized and easy to follow. Everything blended together well. Listen (and read along) with your kid. You will both enjoy the experience.

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36 of 38 people found this review helpful


By Nothing really matters on 07-19-15

You gorilla like this... (sorry, couldn't resist)

You gorilla like this... (sorry, couldn't resist)

I bought this book on sale to listen to with my kids while driving. My son liked the title and premise, so he and I listened to it on our way to and from twice-weekly summer soccer sessions.

My boy loved it. At first, I did not think I was going to like it, though. I can't remember now what it was I initially objected to. But the story really redeemed itself before it was half over, and I wound up loving it, too. I'll never forget that when the story finished, he and I sat in silence. I don't know if his reason was the same as mine, but I was close to tears.

The One and Only Ivan is a poignant children's story that adults will love, too. It contains wonderful messages about friendship, integrity, empathy, and grit. I highly recommend it to parents. It will appeal to both boys and girls.

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14 of 15 people found this review helpful

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By TW on 02-16-17

32 chapters of an emotional rollercoaster!

If you could sum up The One and Only Ivan in three words, what would they be?

charming, heartbreaking, heartwarming!

What did you like best about this story?

We loved how this story kept us guessing. We couldn't wait to hear the next part. The author is creative, imaginative and sensitive. She touches your heart, breaks it and then glues it back together again. She took a real life situation and made it into an incredible and entertaining story.

Which character – as performed by Adam Grupper – was your favourite?

Bob added a light-hearted element to the book. Adam Grupper brought Bob to life, we enjoyed Bob's jokes and quips.

Did you have an emotional reaction to this book? Did it make you laugh or cry?

We laughed and cried!

Any additional comments?

This review is written by myself and my Grade 3 students.

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Customer Reviews

Most Helpful

By C. Donkin on 01-04-16

loved it

Easy listening with Narrator capturing the characters personalities. Wonderful story with a clear message to the next generation. I hope they can do a better job of respecting wildlife than we have. Great audiobook.

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0 of 1 people found this review helpful

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