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Mr. Ape by Dick King-Smith

Mr. Ape (edition 1998)

by Dick King-Smith

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191388,474 (4)1
Title:Mr. Ape
Authors:Dick King-Smith
Info:Knopf Books for Young Readers (1998), Hardcover, 128 pages
Collections:Your library

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Mr. Ape by Dick King-Smith



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Mr Ape is an elderly man who lives on his own in a large stately home. His children have grown up and moved away, and his wife has left him. It’s not a very auspicious start to a children’s book, but only mentioned in passing.

Mr Ape decides to keep some hens in what used to be his drawing room... which is the start of a major venture into animal-keeping. He meets the Romany travellers Joe and his son Jake, with whom he becomes very friendly. Each chapter is somewhat complete in itself, as Mr Ape gradually acquires more and more animals, until about two-thirds of the way through when a party turns into a disaster....

I read it aloud (more than once) to my three-year-old grandson who was mesmerised, repeatedly asking for ‘another chapter!’ each time I finished one. The writing is good; I skipped a couple of words here and there, and one or two descriptions, but overall I liked the book very much.

Recommended to fluent readers, or as a good read-aloud for any child who likes to listen to this kind of book. There are simple line drawings every two or three pages; there is a good pace and an exciting climax. ( )
  SueinCyprus | Aug 25, 2017 |
Mr. Archibald Peregrine Edmund Spring-Russell of Penny Royal is know to the few friends he has had as Ape. A name that fitted him as he was very tall, with long arms and shuffled as he walked. He is now living in the large estate by himself. His children have grown and moved out. His bossy wife decided she was tired of the large house and Ape so she has left. He is on his own.

He also finds that he can now do as he pleases. The wife said no to many things, but now he is free to do as he pleases. One thing he decides is that he doesn't need the whole house to live in. The kitchen is the important room, so he moves his bed in and closes off the bedrooms. The kitchen is quite large so this is easy. He can cook and eat the foods he likes and when he likes.

Another thing he can do is have animals! The wife did not allow any pets. Mr. Ape decides he wants chickens. When he goes to the pet store he can't decide on just one or two, he buys them all! These are just the beginning to his menagerie. Rabbits, guinea pigs, canaries and more!

When it seems things are getting a little out of hand, he makes the acquaintance of Joe and his son Jake, Gypsies who are living near by in their caravan. They help with the care of the animals and a great friendship develops between them.

To tell more would to be to give it all away. I have read other books by Dick King-Smith and found them to also be enjoyable. The stories are entertaining and there can be a lot to take away for kids and adults. Easily read in one sitting. ( )
  ChazziFrazz | Jun 14, 2017 |
Terrific. Highly recommended, especially to those idjits who are still prejudiced against the Romany. I just can't help wonder about a couple of missing decades in Ape's life, though... he was married for 30 years, but his childhood was seventy years ago...

Canned rice pudding with strawberry jam and crumbled graham crackers...
Hard-boiled egg, chopped w/ salt & pepper and butter...

Love the pictures... especially the music room full of canaries, using golf clubs for perches. ( )
  Cheryl_in_CC_NV | Jun 6, 2016 |
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Amazon.com Product Description (ISBN 0590819259, Paperback)

When Archibald Peregrine Edmund Spring-Russell (Ape, for short) finds himself living alone for the first time in his life, he's finally free to do exactly what he pleases. What pleases this wealthy old English gentleman? Eggs. So Ape buys twelve brown hens to keep in his living room. But he doesn't stop there. Soon there are rabbits and guinea pigs in the dinging room, canaries in the music room, a noisy talking parrot in the kitchen, and a puppy who seems to be everywhere! Just as things get a little hairy, Joe and his son, Jake - gypsies whose caravan is nearby- come to the rescue.

(retrieved from Amazon Thu, 12 Mar 2015 18:17:58 -0400)

(see all 4 descriptions)

A wealthy old man living alone in his enormous home meets a Gypsy father and son, adopts many animals, and finally learns the true meaning of family.

(summary from another edition)

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