The One and Only Ivan (Google eBook)

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Harper Collins, Jan 17, 2012 - Juvenile Fiction - 320 pages
127 Reviews

Winner of the 2013 Newbery Medal and a #1 New York Times bestseller, this stirring and unforgettable novel from renowned author Katherine Applegate celebrates the transformative power of unexpected friendships. Inspired by the true story of a captive gorilla known as Ivan, this illustrated novel is told from the point-of-view of Ivan himself.

Having spent 27 years behind the glass walls of his enclosure in a shopping mall, Ivan has grown accustomed to humans watching him. He hardly ever thinks about his life in the jungle. Instead, Ivan occupies himself with television, his friends Stella and Bob, and painting. But when he meets Ruby, a baby elephant taken from the wild, he is forced to see their home, and his art, through new eyes.

The One and Only Ivan was hailed as a best book of the year by Kirkus, School Library Journal, and Amazon, demonstrating it is a true classic in the making. In the tradition of timeless stories like Charlotte's Web and Stuart Little, Katherine Applegate blends humor and poignancy to create Ivan's unforgettable first-person narration in a story of friendship, art, and hope. An author's note depicts the differences between the fictional story and true events.

Supports the Common Core State Standards


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Loved the POV. A little sad, but triumphant ending - LibraryThing
It was just really simple, short, and easy to read. - LibraryThing
Reminiscent of Charlotte's Web, in lyrical prose. - LibraryThing
Very interesting broken up, Avi "Eva" style writing. - LibraryThing
His insight on human behavior is eye opening... - LibraryThing
There are occasional, beautiful pictures throughout. - LibraryThing

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User Review  - AshleyMiller - LibraryThing

The One and Only Ivan is one of the best children’s books I have read! I can’t even begin to explain how much I loved this book, and how everyone should read it. I was engrossed in the book from the ... Read full review

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User Review  - KayleighAdamsRossi - LibraryThing

The one and only Ivan is a story about Ivan the gorilla who lives in a cage in a mall, with an elephant Stella, and a dog. When a new baby elephant, Ruby comes to the mall, and the owner starts ... Read full review

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About the author (2012)

Katherine Applegate's many books include the Roscoe Riley Rules chapter book series, the picture book The Buffalo Storm, and the award-winning novel Home of the Brave. With her husband, Michael Grant, she wrote the hugely popular series Animorphs, which has sold more than 35 million copies worldwide.

Katherine was inspired to write The One and Only Ivan after reading about the true story of a captive gorilla known as Ivan, the Shopping Mall Gorilla. The real Ivan lived alone in a tiny cage for twenty-seven years in a Washington State shopping mall before being moved to Zoo Atlanta after a public outcry. He was a beloved celebrity at the zoo, which houses the nation's largest collection of western lowland gorillas. Ivan was well-known for his paintings, which he "signed" with a thumbprint.

Katherine lives in California with her husband and two children.

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