The One and Only Ivan
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. Newbery Medal (2013), California Book Award Gold Medal for Juvenile (2012), Rebecca Caudill Young Reader's Book Award Nominee (2015), Pennsylvania Young Readers`Choice Award for Grades 3-6 (2014), Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award Nominee (2014) From the Story House: The One and Only Ivan creates both vivid characters and a sense of place. The premise of a book told from a gorilla's point-of-view, with a talking dog and elephant - it could have fallen flat. But, Applegate does a tremendous job of making Ivan both relatable and also not human, but gorilla.