2015 Rebecca Caudill Roundup: The One and Only Ivan

theoneandonlyivanNearly every year, one of the 20 “spots” on the master list of the Rebecca Caudill Young Readers’ Book Award goes to a previous year’s Newbery  medal winner–not surprising since the foremost criterion for inclusion is that the book have literary merit. The 2015 list is no exception, as Katherine Applegate’s The One and Only Ivan is a nominee.

I am going to assume that most readers of this blog have some familiarity with the book’s characters and story, even if they have not yet read it themselves. That said, if any of you would like to read an un-review by Donalynn Miller on the Nerdy Book Club Blog, a joyful testimony on the power of sharing this book with students, I’ll wait right here…. Back now? Want to read it now?  Or re-read it? Or read it aloud as soon as you get back to your students? To say that this book could be the Wonder (or Hunger Games or Harry Potter) of this year’s list would not be an exaggeration.

So why feature this book this week ? (aside from my goal to feature all 20 nominees)

ivanBecause this week, book guru Mr. Schu, who has his copy of the book autographed not only by Katherine Applegate but also by the real Ivan, had the honor (his word) of sharing the debut of the book trailer for Applegate’s newest work, Ivan: The Remarkable True Story of the Shopping Mall Gorilla. Watching the trailer is a good thing, but reading Mr. Schu’s introduction is even better. Ivan will be released on October 7, 2014. And I’m going to make sure each of my libraries has multiple copies of this sure-to-be-wonderful companion to the 2013 Newbery winner.

Other 2015 Rebecca Caudill Reading Roundup Posts



18 thoughts on “2015 Rebecca Caudill Roundup: The One and Only Ivan

  1. I wonder how young readers think of Ivan’s story. Would they call it “fantasy” because a Gorilla is telling the tale? Or do they think of it as realistic? It certainly captures the despair of a caged gorilla. I never met Ivan, but I do recall a large gorilla in a small cage at a zoo. His expression was haunting.

    1. Yes, Sheila, I do wonder that as well. In fact, when I was choosing “categories” for this post, I was torn about whether to add “fantasy.” A check on Goodreads showed that many people categorize the book that way. I do think that children’s (and adults’) strong reactions to the book are due to the realism. I expect that the forthcoming book will evoke the same responses.

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