Hide this

Results from Google Books

Click on a thumbnail to go to Google Books.

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate

The One and Only Ivan (edition 2012)

by Katherine Applegate, Patricia Castelao (Illustrator)

MembersReviewsPopularityAverage ratingMentions
1,3751805,556 (4.38)65
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


Sign up for LibraryThing to find out whether you'll like this book.

No current Talk conversations about this book.

» See also 65 mentions

Showing 1-5 of 203 (next | show all)
Ivan is a gorilla that is living in a circus (in a mall). He is great friends with some of the other animals, especially the elephant named Stella. In hopes of making some extra money, the owner buys a baby elephant when Stella gets hurt. When Stella is close to passing, Ivan promises to take care of Ruby, the baby elephant, and makes sure she does not live there forever. Ivan follows through on his promise.

This book is themed with honesty, hope and compassion.

Curriculum wise, this book could be a quick read aloud to teach the themes above.
  kelly.haskins | Jan 25, 2015 |
I think this is a really great chapter book that promotes the fair treatment of animals without really going crazy like some texts could. Ivan's perspective is sweet, funny, and simple. I think it's a really neat perspective to read from, too, as you can sort of see what it would be like to be in captivity like this. I think kids of all ages can enjoy this book. 3-8 grade.
  sbutler9 | Dec 3, 2014 |
Format: Chapter Book
Genre: Fiction

This is a great story about a gorilla that lives in a Mall. He doesn't remember his life before the mall so he doesn't think there's anything better than where he's at. An elephant, Stella, also lives in the mall. She can remember everything and tell Ivan about her life. She was a circus elephant and had been abused. One day the mall gets a new elephant. Her name is Ruby and she is still a baby. Stella doesn't want Ruby to have the same life as her and makes Ivan promise to always protect her. Ivan promises even though he doesn't know how to. Stella has an injured foot which causes her to die. Ivan begins to understand the the Mall is not his domain, it is a cage. Ivan and Julia, the custodians daughter, draw pictures. Ivan comes up with a plan to get out of the mall and into a Zoo. With the help of Julia and her father, protesters come and protest the Mall's caged animals and eventually the mall gets shut down. Ivan and Ruby are sent to a Zoo were they have more room and freedom. ( )
  Lacyjaramillo | Dec 3, 2014 |
Format- Novel
Genre- Fiction
The book The One and Only Ivan is a great book about a true story of a gorilla named Ivan. The story is told in the point of view of Ivan. He had been in captivity for many years and totally blocked out his memory of when he was free in the jungle. During his life at the mall, he makes great friendship with other animals that are held at the same mall that Ivan is at. During his time in his domain he watches TV and like to draw. When the mall gets a new elephant, Ruby, Ivan wants her to have a better life than just living in domain. So Ivan takes it upon himself to make sure of that. This is a great book that the students just dive into and stirs up make ethical questions in the classroom.
  reyesjaramillo61 | Dec 3, 2014 |
The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate
Ivan is a silverback gorilla who lives and performs in a rundown roadside circus. This takes place in an old mall off of Exit 8. The other circus animals are Stella, an old elephant and Ruby, a young elephant that arrives in the middle of the story. Bob is the stray dog (who stays around all the time) hangs out with everyone too. They are owned by Mack. He is not very nice to the animals. These characters are forced to live a life of captivity instead of in their natural environment.
We get to read the story from Ivan’s point of view because he shares his thoughts in each small chapter (reminds me of a journal). Thank goodness he has his friends because he asks a lot of questions about life. Ivan loves the stories Stella tells. He learns from her. The circus janitor and caretaker’s name is George. He has a daughter named Julia. She comes to the mall circus after school to wait for him to finish working. She does homework, visits the animals, and colors. Julia helps Ivan discover that he likes to do artwork because she shares crayons and paper with Ivan. They draw together a lot.
In the middle of the story, Mack buys a baby elephant because he wants more people to come to his show and because Ruby was a very cheap price. Mack is very mean to her when he trains her (she is stubborn and just sits there). This really scares Stella and Ivan.
A sad part of the story happens when Stella’s foot becomes really infected because of many days with no medical care from a doctor-even though George told Mack about it. Mack didn’t want to spend the money on a doctor. Stella makes Ivan promise her that Ruby won’t have to live the life of a circus performer. Stella dies.
After a very long time, he comes up with a brilliant idea to make this happen. He makes a billboard sized painting out of many little papers that spell “home” and has Ruby in a jungle like zoo setting. Julia figures out the puzzle! She begs George to paste it up on the billboard in front of the exit. The reporters come to hear the story, and the public gets angry about the inappropriate living conditions. George is fired and the circus is shut down.
In the end, they finally all move to a beautiful zoo just like Ivan promised Stella. Ruby is happy. Ivan slowly gets to know the other silverbacks (watching them on tv first!). Ivan still gets to paint. He decorates the wall with mud paint. George, gets a job at this zoo. Bob gets to live with George and Julia! Everyone stays friends.
What a rollercoaster of emotions this story is! It should be made into a movie because it is based on a similar events of a real silverback gorilla. It has many good points like treating animals correctly and giving them a proper place to live. Ivan learns what it means to be a real silverback gorilla, the whole definition of himself. The story is written so you feel every emotion. Kindness wins in this story. ( )
  AutumnH.B1 | Dec 2, 2014 |
Showing 1-5 of 203 (next | show all)
no reviews | add a review

» Add other authors

Author nameRoleType of authorWork?Status
Katherine Applegateprimary authorall editionsconfirmed
Baldinucci, LoredanaTranslatorsecondary authorsome editionsconfirmed
You must log in to edit Common Knowledge data.
For more help see the Common Knowledge help page.
Series (with order)
Canonical title
Information from the Italian Common Knowledge. Edit to localize it to your language.
Original title
Alternative titles
Original publication date
Important places
Important events
Related movies
Awards and honors
It is never too late to be

what you might have been.

--George Eliot
for Julia
First words
I am Ivan. I am a gorilla. It's not as easy as it looks.
Last words
Disambiguation notice
Publisher's editors
Publisher series
Original language

References to this work on external resources.

Wikipedia in English


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)

» see all 3 descriptions

Quick Links

Swap Ebooks Audio
64 wanted2 pay5 pay

Popular covers


Average: (4.38)
0.5 1
1 2
2 5
2.5 2
3 33
3.5 17
4 138
4.5 35
5 220


An edition of this book was published by Audible.com.

See editions

Recorded Books

An edition of this book was published by Recorded Books.

» Publisher information page

LibraryThing Early Reviewers Alumn

The One and Only Ivan by Katherine Applegate was made available through LibraryThing Early Reviewers. Sign up to possibly get pre-publication copies of books.

Is this you?

Become a LibraryThing Author.


Help/FAQs | About | Privacy/Terms | Blog | Contact | LibraryThing.com | APIs | WikiThing | Common Knowledge | Legacy Libraries | Early Reviewers | 95,145,788 books! | Top bar: Always visible