Previously published in England as Manatee Baby (2013), this appealing animal-survival adventure is based on a true episode...

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MANATEE RESCUE

From the Heroes of the Wild series

In a remote Amazon village, Manuela and her cousin Libia convince an entire village to cease manatee fishing after the two girls rescue, nurture, and release a manatee calf Manuela accidentally speared while hunting its mother.

Watching a manatee die and holding the injured calf she calls Airuwe in her arms is enough to turn Manuela from aspiring manatee hunter to conservationist, but it takes much longer for her to fulfill the silent promise she made to preserve the baby. Raising an orphaned mammal is difficult enough, but there are also threats from both the human and the natural world: the unsavory Clink-Clink, who wants to sell it, and powerful rainy-season floods. Luckily, the girls have the support of their grandmother, a nurse with veterinary experience, and, after an intensive campaign, the community. The third-person narration distances readers a bit, but it allows Davies to weave in details about Amazonian culture and setting as well as the endangered manatees while maintaining gentle suspense. Libia, limping and stunted from a childhood illness, proves skillful in a canoe, and both girls are imaginative and resourceful. Each short chapter includes a grayscale illustration done with brush and pen. Words potentially unfamiliar to general readers are defined in footnotes.

Previously published in England as Manatee Baby (2013), this appealing animal-survival adventure is based on a true episode described in an afterword. (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: Jan. 5, 2016

ISBN: 978-0-7636-7830-2

Page Count: 112

Publisher: Candlewick

Review Posted Online: Sept. 21, 2015

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 2015

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With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded.

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THE ONE AND ONLY BOB

Tiny, sassy Bob the dog, friend of The One and Only Ivan (2012), returns to tell his tale.

Wisecracking Bob, who is a little bit Chihuahua among other things, now lives with his girl, Julia, and her parents. Happily, her father works at Wildworld Zoological Park and Sanctuary, the zoo where Bob’s two best friends, Ivan the gorilla and Ruby the elephant, live, so Bob gets to visit and catch up with them regularly. Due to an early betrayal, Bob doesn’t trust humans (most humans are good only for their thumbs); he fears he’s going soft living with Julia, and he’s certain he is a Bad Dog—as in “not a good representative of my species.” On a visit to the zoo with a storm threatening, Bob accidentally falls into the gorilla enclosure just as a tornado strikes. So that’s what it’s like to fly. In the storm’s aftermath, Bob proves to everyone (and finally himself) that there is a big heart in that tiny chest…and a brave one too. With this companion, Applegate picks up where her Newbery Medal winner left off, and fans will be overjoyed to ride along in the head of lovable, self-deprecating Bob on his storm-tossed adventure. His wry doggy observations and attitude are pitch perfect (augmented by the canine glossary and Castelao’s picture dictionary of dog postures found in the frontmatter). Gorilla Ivan described Julia as having straight, black hair in the previous title, and Castelao's illustrations in that volume showed her as pale-skinned. (Finished art not available for review.)

With Ivan’s movie out this year from Disney, expect great interest—it will be richly rewarded. (afterword) (Fiction. 8-12)

Pub Date: May 5, 2020

ISBN: 978-0-06-299131-7

Page Count: 352

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: March 25, 2020

Kirkus Reviews Issue: April 15, 2020

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The three way chats, in which they are joined by other animals, about web spinning, themselves, other humans—are as often...

CHARLOTTE'S WEB

A successful juvenile by the beloved New Yorker writer portrays a farm episode with an imaginative twist that makes a poignant, humorous story of a pig, a spider and a little girl.

Young Fern Arable pleads for the life of runt piglet Wilbur and gets her father to sell him to a neighbor, Mr. Zuckerman. Daily, Fern visits the Zuckermans to sit and muse with Wilbur and with the clever pen spider Charlotte, who befriends him when he is lonely and downcast. At the news of Wilbur's forthcoming slaughter, campaigning Charlotte, to the astonishment of people for miles around, spins words in her web. "Some Pig" comes first. Then "Terrific"—then "Radiant". The last word, when Wilbur is about to win a show prize and Charlotte is about to die from building her egg sac, is "Humble". And as the wonderful Charlotte does die, the sadness is tempered by the promise of more spiders next spring.

The three way chats, in which they are joined by other animals, about web spinning, themselves, other humans—are as often informative as amusing, and the whole tenor of appealing wit and pathos will make fine entertainment for reading aloud, too.

Pub Date: Oct. 15, 1952

ISBN: 978-0-06-026385-0

Page Count: 192

Publisher: Harper/HarperCollins

Review Posted Online: Sept. 14, 2011

Kirkus Reviews Issue: Oct. 1, 1952

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