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The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

The One and Only Ivan (edition 2012)

by Katherine Applegate, Patricia Castelao (Illustrator)

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1,5341924,787 (4.39)67
Title:The One and Only Ivan
Authors:Katherine Applegate
Other authors:Patricia Castelao (Illustrator)
Info:HarperCollins (2012), Edition: 1, Hardcover, 320 pages
Collections:Your library

Work details

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

  1. 21
    Charlotte's Web by E. B. White (C.Vick)
  2. 00
    A Dog's Life: The Autobiography of a Stray by Ann M. Martin (BookshelfMonstrosity)
    BookshelfMonstrosity: These tender, wistful stories of survival are told from an animal's perspective -- stray pooch, Squirrel, and captured gorilla, Ivan. While humans both help and hinder them during their long struggles, they find hope (and secure homes) in the end.… (more)
  3. 11
    The Underneath by Kathi Appelt (C.Vick)
  4. 11
    Wonder by R. J. Palacio (FFortuna)

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» See also 67 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 216 (next | show all)
Absolutely heartbreaking, and in the end, life affirming. As a child I would have been all over this book, probably reading it over and over again, as I did Shiloh and Black Beauty. This is a wonderful tale about the way we treat animals.

After all, elephants are people too. ( )
  DanielleMD | Jun 20, 2015 |
A great, quick read for any animal lover out there.

This one's got it all. A sentimental gorilla. An elephant that never forgets. A dog-gone dog. And loving people. As you read, you'll find yourself whisked away to the imagination of a gorilla, what he sees, what he hears, and what he feels. So next time you see a nature documentary on gorillas, you'll reflect on the one and only Ivan's feelings of friendship, care, and longing. It's a great book to do a read-aloud in the classroom, as it will tug at your heartstrings up until the very end.

It's a great book to enjoy. ( )
  jms001 | Jun 14, 2015 |
Ivan is a performing gorilla at The Big Top Mall and Video Arcade. He makes drawings that are sold, with or without a frame. He draws, colors, and later, paints. He is an artist. He had always been one. Stella is an elephant, also part of the sideshow at the Mall. Bob is a dog; he is his own master. He likes sleeping on Ivan’s stomach. The three are friends.

When a baby elephant, Ruby, is brought to the Mall, to improve business, Stella adopts her. Ruby is just a baby and very inquisitive. Soon she is friends with Ivan and Bob.

Daisy wants a better life for Ruby. She makes Ivan promise he will help Ruby, which he does.

This then, is the brief story. It is about rescuing an animal and finding it a good home. What sets the book apart is that the rescue is carried out by another animal. Again, not really. Panchatantra Tales and Aesop’s Fables have animals helping each other. If a mouse can help a lion, why not a gorilla rescue an elephant?

I think this is not an animal rescue story. Primarily, it is about taking a look at ourselves, the homo sapiens. Like Stella says, “Human beings can surprise you sometimes. An unpredictable species, Homo sapiens.”

There are other issues also and the story serves as a vehicle for them. For instance, Ivan blanks out his earlier years, which is a common reaction to trauma. George reminisces about Ivan's early years; the classic case of the abuser deluding himself. ( )
  gitavreddy | May 7, 2015 |
Heart breaking and heart warming all at one. A must read for everyone both young and old. ( )
  katherineemilysmith | May 4, 2015 |
The One and Only Ivan is about a gorilla named Ivan that lives in a small circus. The circus does not properly care for him or any of the other animals. Ivan is a very unique gorilla in that he is artistic. He loves to paint and finds that by expressing himself through art he can change the world around him. During the course of the story, Ivan becomes friends with a baby elephant named Ruby. Ruby is very scared. To make Ruby feel safer and more at home, Ivan paints Ruby a proper home. The painting depicts a lovely zoo with happy animals. The billboard garners lots of attention from the community and starts a protest. Eventually, Ruby and Ivan end up going to a zoo very much like the one that Ivan painted.

I liked this book a lot. It not only as a good message - if you take care of animals they will like you and therefore listen to you, but it also plays with the theme does life imitate art or does art imitate life.

My favorite part of this story was when the animals are in their new habitats and Ivan climbs to the top of the tree and sees Ruby safe and happy. This story of friendship resonates with me because I am at my happiest when I see my friends and loved ones happy. ( )
  KendallCH | Apr 30, 2015 |
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Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Katherine Applegateprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baldinucci, LoredanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
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It is never too late to be

what you might have been.

--George Eliot
for Julia
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I am Ivan. I am a gorilla. It's not as easy as it looks.
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Book description
--from the book summary

When Ivan, a gorilla who has lived for years in a down-and-out circus-themed mall, meets Ruby, a baby elephant that has been added to the mall, he decides that he must find her a better life.
Haiku summary

Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0061992259, Hardcover)

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.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:06:49 -0400)

(see all 3 descriptions)

When Ivan, a gorilla who has lived for years in a down-and-out circus-themed mall, meets Ruby, a baby elephant that has been added to the mall, he decides that he must find her a better life.

(summary from another edition)

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