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Circus Family Dog
     

Circus Family Dog

by Sue Truesdell (Illustrator), Andrew Clements
 

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Grumps is a circus dog who loves to make people laugh--all he has to do is lie down on the ground with his feet in the air and the crowds cheer and roar. But one day a new dog named Sparks joins the circus. Sparks can jump through hoops, balance a ball on his nose, and even ride on the back of a running zebra. How can an old dog with one simple trick compete with

Overview


Grumps is a circus dog who loves to make people laugh--all he has to do is lie down on the ground with his feet in the air and the crowds cheer and roar. But one day a new dog named Sparks joins the circus. Sparks can jump through hoops, balance a ball on his nose, and even ride on the back of a running zebra. How can an old dog with one simple trick compete with the likes of Sparks? Sue Truesdell's exuberant illustrations capture all the excitement of circus life in this heartwarming story about friendship, family, and the universal need for acceptance.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher
"Children are sure to demand a repeat performance." School Library Journal

"Kids will respond to lovable Grumps; adult readers will be more attuned to the message about teaching old dogs new tricks." Booklist, ALA

"The well-paced text complements the clean, varied layouts of the illustrations." The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Children's Literature - Children's Literature
Old Grumps, the circus dog, has only one trick, playing dead. He cannot jump through the burning hoop, but the children love him--until Red the Clown brings a new dog, Sparks, into the ring. Sparks can do many tricks and soon replaces Grumps as the star of the show. With silent determination, Grumps spends his days training to jump through the burning hoop. On the last night of the circus, Grumps surprises the clowns and the audience with one spectacular performance. He never performs the trick again, but he is loved "because he is part of the circus family." With sparse text and colorful humorous pen and ink and watercolor illustrations, Clements and Truesdell present a delightful story for young children who enjoy the excitement of a circus. Readers can almost feel the mounting tension as each night Grumps attempts to jump through the burning hoop. With similarities to Susan Meddaugh's books, this one is sure to please younger audiences. 2000, Clarion Books, Ages 4 to 7, $15.00. Reviewer: Jenny B. (J. B.) Petty—Children's Literature
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 3-Grumps is a gray and scraggly but well-loved circus dog. He moves slowly, if at all. The children roar with laughter when, instead of jumping through the flaming hoop, the old pooch just yawns, closes his eyes, and lies down until the clowns roll him offstage in a wagon. Then a new pup, Sparks, arrives and dazzles the audience with his tricks. Not to worry though-the aging canine proves he can still steal the show one last time. The combination of Clements's impeccable storyteller pacing and Truesdell's creative and whimsical cartoons create a reading and visual experience second only to actually being at the circus. The illustrator uses a mixture of watercolors with pen and ink to bring the action to life in vibrant colors. The use of muted tones for the animated and gleeful children surrounding the center ring helps to create a realistic mood for this funny and warm story about extended family life behind the scenes of the Big Top. For librarians looking for a great circus book or an example of the importance of a loving family-this is it. Children are sure to demand a repeat performance.-Wanda Meyers-Hines, Huntsville/Madison County Public Library, Huntsville, AL Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780395786482
Publisher:
Houghton Mifflin Harcourt
Publication date:
04/28/2000
Pages:
32
Product dimensions:
8.00(w) x 10.00(h) x 0.12(d)
Lexile:
460L (what's this?)
Age Range:
4 - 7 Years

Meet the Author

Andrew Clements is the author of picture books and novels for young readers, including Because Your Daddy Loves You and the perennial bestseller Frindle. He lives in Baldwin, Maine, and can also be found at www.andrewclements.com.

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