Kids on Fire: Student Review of The One And Only Ivan

December 18, 2013

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James’ Review:

The One and Only Ivan is a book of fiction. The setting is a Gorilla cage at the “Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade.” The Main Characters are Ivan and his friends Bob, Stella, Ruby, and Julia. Ivan is a silverback gorilla, Bob is a stray dog, Stella and Ruby are elephants, and Julia is a little girl. The story is told from the point of view of Ivan and the whole story revolves around the conflict that Ivan feels as a Gorilla kept in a cage by humans. Freedom and friendship are the most important themes in the story.

When the story begins, we meet Ivan, a silverback (adult male) gorilla. Ivan has been in a cage at a shopping mall since he was young. Stella and Bob live there too and their friendship keeps Ivan from being too lonely. Ivan is bored in his cage but he loves to watch television and draw. He enjoys his friends but he would rather live with other gorillas. Ivan doesn’t have a happy life but he accepts things as they are until Ruby, a baby elephant moves into a cage at the mall. When Ivan can see how sad life in the cage makes Ruby, he decides to draw attention to her situation. In doing so, Ivan changes life for everyone at Exit 8 Big Top Mall. Read The One and Only Ivan, and find out how.

Entertainment Value:

This book was entertaining because it was told from the point of view of a gorilla who didn’t really understand why humans do some of the things that we do. I also thought the descriptions of the baby elephant’s behavior were really funny.

Educational Value:

I found this book educational because I learned about gorillas and elephants.

Teacher Name:

Mrs. Lewis


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