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The Circus Ship
by Chris Van Dusen


Overview - With stunning artwork and a rhyming text, the illustrator of the Mercy Watson books tells a tale of human-animal connection full of humor and heart.

When a circus ship runs aground off the coast of Maine, the poor animals are left on their own to swim the chilly waters.  Read more...


 
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More About The Circus Ship by Chris Van Dusen
 
 
 
Overview
With stunning artwork and a rhyming text, the illustrator of the Mercy Watson books tells a tale of human-animal connection full of humor and heart.

When a circus ship runs aground off the coast of Maine, the poor animals are left on their own to swim the chilly waters. Staggering onto a nearby island, they soon win over the wary townspeople with their kind, courageous ways. So well do the critters blend in that when the greedy circus owner returns to claim them, villagers of all species conspire to outsmart the bloated blowhard. With buoyant rhymes and brilliantly caricatured illustrations evoking the early nineteenth century, Chris Van Dusen presents a hugely entertaining tale about the bonds of community -- and a rare hidden-pictures spread for eagle-eyed readers of all ages.

 
Details
  • ISBN-13: 9780763630904
  • ISBN-10: 076363090X
  • Publisher: Candlewick Press (MA)
  • Publish Date: September 2009
  • Page Count: 40
  • Reading Level: Ages 4-8
  • Dimensions: 10.3 x 10.2 x 0.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.1 pounds


Related Categories

Books > Juvenile Fiction > Action & Adventure - Survival Stories
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Historical - United States - 19th Century
Books > Juvenile Fiction > Humorous Stories

 
Publishers Weekly Reviews

Publishers Weekly® Reviews

  • Reviewed in: Publishers Weekly, page .
  • Review Date: 2015-04-27
  • Reviewer: Staff

Mr. Paine, the greedy, mustachioed manager of a 19th-century circus, browbeats his ship's captain into sailing onward on a foggy night: "Don't stop! Keep going!/ I've got a show to do!/ Just get me down to Boston town/ tomorrow, sir, by two!" The ship crashes and sinks, but the animals swim to a small Maine island, where they confound the villagers until the tiger saves a girl from a fire. After that, the islanders help hide the animals when Mr. Paine returns for them. Van Dusen's (the Mercy Watson books) verse is tightly constructed, and his cartoonlike spreads are polished, literally and figuratively: the exaggerated chins and noses of the humans gleam, and sunsets and firelight illuminate the scenes dramatically. Other than Mr. Paine, readers don't get too close to any of the characters; the focus is on the action. The fantasy of African wildlife on a quiet Maine island will absorb a read-aloud audience, and a clever hide-and-seek page lets readers hunt for the animals, which are concealed from Mr. Paine. A final page supplies the story's (much sadder) historical source. Ages 4—8. (Sept.)

 
BAM Customer Reviews