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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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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

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The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate


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Showing 1-5 of 199 (next | show all)
When I first started this book, I was surprised to find that it was based on a true story. I know that strange and terrible things happen all the time, but it hurt my heart to think of poor Ivan spending almost 30 years in that “domain”. Admittedly, I am a softy and I really get into my books, but I feel like it would be impossible not to feel emotional about Ivan, Stella, Ruby, Bob and even Julia as you share their lives with them. In fact, I’m still choked up right now having just read the final chapters. As usual, I am heavy-hearted over having finished the story.

Ivan’s voice is perfectly entertaining while his perspective is enlightened. His opinions on humans really hit home in a way that made me uncomfortable at times. The author did an amazing job of stepping out of her human self and into Ivan’s gorilla self. She also captured Bob, particularly well, in my opinion. His wry sense of humor and defiant attitude are perfectly juxtaposed against his inner sweetness and need to snuggle. Her dog voice was “realistic” and reminded me of Ann Martin’s A Dog’s Life (Another tear jerker!).

While the themes in Ivan are heavy and the imagery sometimes gruesome, the story is presented with language that is accessible and in an age-appropriate way for 4th-6th graders. They will be outraged on Ivan, Stella, and Ruby’s behalf. They will also have their worldview challenged in a way that will make them think beyond Ivan and his friends, to zoos, circuses, and even farms.
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  kristennicoson | Nov 19, 2014 |
1.) A story about a gorilla held captive in a glass showcase for over 20 years in a mall and then later in a zoo, he was used to humans always watching him, he keeps himself busy by watching tv and talking with his friends. He doesn't think about where he actually comes from until a baby elephant by the name of Ruby is taken from the wild and he learns about the wild from his new friend. The new elephant begins to arouse old feelings he didn't remember having and takes him on a journey as well.

2.) This book really does a good job focusing on animals and all the other characters in the book as well. I also thought it was a very smart way to tell the story in the silverback's point of view especially for animal lovers. It was a very good book to read to someone about animals where it isn't just something that is the norm like cute laughable chipmunks or dancing bears and so on. It actually brings so many different emotions to the story after reading page after page.

3.) A book for school age kids where you can see if they are able to gauge what emotions would be naturally felt by the story. i would make a chart of each animal, person, caregiver and so forth in the book and then after that draw a different type of face for emotions that each character is feeling. Whether it is one feelings or more, it would help show if the child can comprehend what emotions are shown.
  ashpoe | Nov 12, 2014 |
This book is based on the true story of a gorilla named Ivan. Ivan lives in a mall zoo with a few other animals, but no other gorillas. This story is about Ivan, his elephant friends Stella and Ruby, and his dog friend Bob. Through the power of art, hope and friendship, Ivan saves himself and his friends. I loved this book. It was a heartwarming and thought-provoking story. I think it would appeal to children because of the animals in the story. They would also enjoy the unusual writing style. I would use this book with children in 3rd grade to 5th grade. I could use this book in the classroom when we talk about the value and power of art or friendships.
  JeniseRedding | Nov 11, 2014 |
Even if this book didn't win the Newbery it would become a classic. Simply beautiful! Katherine Applegate has created a truly moving work of fiction for children that will open their eyes and forever change them. I love, love, love it!
( )
  Nancy.Castaldo | Nov 3, 2014 |
A great book! Inspired by true events, _The One and Only Ivan_ is a story of captivity told through the eyes of a silverback gorilla.

Moving and at times, devastating, _Ivan_ is a book that I read in small bites over a week. Applegate takes a hard look at animal captivity/circus culture, but in a way that is accessible for children. The book's villain (Ivan's owner), although responsible for acts of negligence and cruelty, ultimately comes across as misguided and desperate, rather than evil, while Julia, a young girl whose father is employed by the owner, is a beautiful example of compassion. Full of fantastic lessons, _The One and Only Ivan_ is a must-read for younger and middle-grade readers. ( )
  Debra_Armbruster | Nov 2, 2014 |
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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 Mon, 30 Sep 2013 13:25:17 -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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