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Duck on a Bike

Duck on a Bike

4.7 12
by David Shannon

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One day down on the farm, Duck got a wild idea. "I bet I could ride a bike," he thought. He waddled over to where a boy had parked his bike, and climbed on, and began to ride. At first he rode slowly and he wobbled a lot, but it was fun! Duck rides past Sheep, Horse, and all the other barnyard animalsŠ and when a group of kids ride by on their bikes, leaving them to


One day down on the farm, Duck got a wild idea. "I bet I could ride a bike," he thought. He waddled over to where a boy had parked his bike, and climbed on, and began to ride. At first he rode slowly and he wobbled a lot, but it was fun! Duck rides past Sheep, Horse, and all the other barnyard animalsŠ and when a group of kids ride by on their bikes, leaving them to go into the farmhouse ­ all of the animals get to ride bikes, just like Duck!

Editorial Reviews

The Barnes & Noble Review
"One day down on the farm, Duck got a wild idea." Now this feathered fellow has gone from paddling to pedaling. Duck is cruising on a shiny red bike through the farm, rainbow streamers blowing in the wind. As he happily rides along, his barnyard pals don't take the sight of Duck on a bike lightly. Sheep is worried. Dog is impressed. Pig and Pig are jealous. But every animal Duck rolls by is at least a little intrigued. This duck with pluck is having a ball, and his enthusiasm turns out to be contagious. When a band of kids on bikes leave their wheels unattended, the entire barnyard gang gets a taste of joyriding, and Goat literally sneaks a taste of his bicycle's basket.

Award-winning author and illustrator David Shannon charms young audiences again with this richly illustrated quack-up tale. Fans of Shannon's No, David! and A Bad Case of Stripes will be happily familiar with Shannon's vibrantly colorful illustrations. The pages in this book are alive with motion. You can almost feel the troop of children whiz by Duck, dust flying, thanks to Shannon's pop-off-the-page color and style. This great read-aloud, read-along story is perfectly silly and sweet. In fact, we haven't been this fond of a farm crew since Doreen Cronin and Betsy Lewin's Click, Clack Moo: Cows That Type. Children will be delighted with this fun and funny tale, and they will want to read it again and again. Shannon creates an enchantingly believable fantasy world; flying pigs don't have anything on this Duck on a bike. (Kara Alexander)

Publishers Weekly
Shannon serves up a sunny blend of humor and action in this delightful tale of a Duck who spies a red bicycle one day and gets "a wild idea." Sure enough, in no time flat, he's tooling around the farmyard. A succession of his barnyard friends greet him politely enough, but their private responses range from scornful ("That's the silliest thing I've ever seen," from Cow) to boastful ("You're still not as fast as me," from Horse) to wistful ("I wish I could ride a bike just like Duck," from Mouse). Then a herd of kids rides down the road in a blur of dust; they park their bikes and head indoors. A wordless spread records the sublime moment when the animals all gather with identical wide-eyed looks and sly smiles. Readers can almost see what they're thinking, and sure enough, the next spread shows them all zipping around on bikes, with Duck in the lead. Shannon makes the most of awkward appendages on wheels and handlebars, and deftly balances clean compositions with just the right amount of detail. Varying perspectives including the chicken's-eye-view of Duck's bike wheel looming large provide plenty of good-natured dash. Add to all this the abundant opportunity for youngsters to chime in with barnyard responses ("M-o-o-o"; "Cluck! Cluck!"), and the result is one swell read-aloud, packed with freewheeling fun. Ages 3-up. (Apr.) Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
PreS-Gr 2-The author of several books about a particularly challenging youngster named David focuses this time on the escapades of a very clever duck. The story begins with a bike a boy left behind. Duck tries it out, and all the other barnyard animals protest loudly. First the cow, then the sheep, and then the dog voice their opinions about a duck riding a bike. Cat, Horse, Hen, Goat, Pig, and Mouse chime in with their thoughts but can't help but wonder, Wouldn't it be fun to try it too? Predictably, by story's end, a whole team of riders have parked their bikes at the barnyard and while they're away, the animals play. On bikes of all shapes and sizes the animals fulfill their "childlike dreams," just like Duck did. Shannon leaves a message for young and old alike in this delightful book best suited as a read-aloud for preschoolers. His bold pictures jump out at readers, packed with action and expression. A surefire hit for libraries and bookstores.-Linda Shubert, Alief Ind. School District, Houston, TX Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature
A duck on a bike? She's one determined rider. Cow looks on skeptically, and sheep worriedly, Dog is envious and Cat disinterested as Duck sails by. Horse, Chicken, Goat, Pig, and Mouse have their own thoughts. When some kids park their bikes nearby, however, the temptation is too much. On a textless double page, we see all the animals staring at the available bikes and can anticipate the happy crew taking off. Shannon's lively, naturalistic paintings make the impossible appear reasonable. A wonderful, incredible ride is had by all. The final shot of Duck eyeing the tractor is provocative fun.
—Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
School Library Journal
When Duck finds an unattended bike, he is sure that he can ride it. And so he does, a bit wobbly at first, but then with increasing confidence until he is soaring with no "hands." As he passes each barnyard animal, they return his greeting but have secret thoughts of their own, ranging from scorn to envy. When some children leave their bikes by the house, it isn't hard to guess what the animals will do. This delightful story will have youngsters chiming in on the repeated phrases and predicting, in no time, what will happen next, and the many animal sounds provide ample opportunities for role-playing. Shannon's brightly colored spreads are filled with humor. There are delicious close-ups of the animals as Duck pedals by them. Cow's huge head, turned in amazement toward his friend, fills a page. Cat nonchalantly grooms herself with an "I can't be bothered attitude" as Duck rides on. The animals' antics on the bikes are hilarious. Little Chicken rides a tricycle, the Pigs sport a bicycle built for two, Goat can't resist eating the basket as he rides, and tiny Mouse hitches a lift on Duck's handlebars. That would be grand finale enough, but then Duck spies a tractor-. For a look at another unconventional barnyard adventure, pair this charming offering with Paul B. Johnson's The Cow Who Wouldn't Come Down (Orchard, 1993).-Marianne Saccardi, Norwalk Community College, CT Copyright 2001 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
Grab your funny bone-Shannon (The Shark God, 2001, etc.) rides again! Rather his Duck does, when one day on the farm, he gets a wild idea that he can ride a bike. After the first wobbles, Duck sails past Cow, Sheep, Dog, Cat, Horse, Chicken, Goat, Pig, and Mouse. The oversized animals' reactions range from "How silly" to "Show-off" to "Wish I could ride!" Then a bunch of kids come riding down the farm road and park their bikes beside the house and go inside. The next double spread shows the animals staring ahead with gleeful expressions, like a light bulb lighting up-and readers will know immediately what comes next. The scene of all the animals gaily pedaling bikes is hilarious. And when they put them back, no one knows that 11 farm animals had ever been on a bike. Brightly colored illustrations display a front row, big-screen point of view with bits of images running off the edges of the spread. The in-your-face perspective of the action punctuates the comedy and the page design is ingenious. Even the end page humorously poses the next challenge for Duck-a tractor. The body language of Duck on the bike looks nothing but plausible. A "quackerjack" of a terrific escapade.
From the Publisher

Bank Street College of Education Best Children's Books of the Year, 2003
Capitol Choices, 2002
ABC Children's Booksellers Choices Award, 2003
Charlotte Zolotow Award, 2003, Highly Commended
SMART Book Award, 2007 Nominee

* "A 'quackerjack' of a terrific escapade." -- Kirkus (starred review)
* "This whole bright book is tons of fun." -- Booklist (starred review)
* "This delightful story will have youngsters chiming in…." -- School Library Journal (starred review)

Product Details

Scholastic, Inc.
Publication date:
Product dimensions:
8.46(w) x 10.46(h) x 0.15(d)
Age Range:
4 - 8 Years

Meet the Author

David Shannon is the internationally acclaimed creator of more than thirty picture books, including No, David!, a Caldecott Honor Book and his second New York Times Best Illustrated Book of the Year, and three more David picture books. Shannon's bestsellers include A Bad Case of Stripes, Duck on a Bike, and his recent Bugs in My Hair. He lives in California with his family.

Brief Biography

Los Angeles, California
Date of Birth:
October 5, 1960
Place of Birth:
Washington, D. C. (Raised in Spokane, Washington)
B.A., Art Center College of Design

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Duck on a Bike 4.7 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 12 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Fun illustrations and entertaining story.
psofpaper More than 1 year ago
Bought this for my 2 year old niece and her 4.5 year old older brother loved it, too. Great illustrations, too.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
NannyMN More than 1 year ago
I read to elementary school children. I had the opportunity to read this book to first graders. They noticed that some remarks by the animals were not nice, and mentioned it unprompted. They loved Duck's daring and especially made a lot of speculation on what Duck was thinking as he looked at the tractor on the last page. I really enjoy a book that continues beyond just listening to the story. The author has created just that. A story that makes minds wander. Great! Now I have to buy one for my grandson, he will enjoy the story too.
Guest More than 1 year ago
My son is 2 years old and he loves this book. He chooses this book as his first story every night. I read the story to him and let him tell me the name of the animal and the sound it makes. He loves naming the animals and saying the sounds each animal makes. I say duck rode past....my son answers cow. Then I continue the story. Then I say the cow said?....my son answers moooo. The colors are bright and vivid. The animals are large and life like.
Guest More than 1 year ago
This is a great story about a duck who tries something that ducks don't normally do... ride bikes. Delightful illustrations and wonderfully animated characters are brought together in this book to create a winning children's story. 'Duck' has held the attention of my grandson since before he was a year old, quite a feat!
Guest More than 1 year ago
My daughter brought this book home from the library and we read it FIVE TIMES IN A ROW!!! We all loved it. She brings it home every few weeks and we all sit together and take turns with the animals. I highly recommend this book to any child no matter what your age! ;)
Guest More than 1 year ago
My 2 year old adores this book and I like it so much that I don't even mind reading it to him over and over again. The illustrations are as entertaining as the story. We've been monopolizing our library's copy, and Santa will definitely be leaving Duck on a Bike under the tree this Christmas!
Guest More than 1 year ago
good book
Guest More than 1 year ago
This book is an enjoyable addition to our growing David Shannon collection. The illustrations are fun and the story is cute. Our four year old boys especially liked imagining what the duck will do next when seeing the illustration on the last page.