Overview

Peter's been invited to go on a safari. He's brought:

1. ...
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Overview

Peter's been invited to go on a safari. He's brought:

1. Uncle Nigel, who's an explorer

2. hiking shorts

3. a canteen

But what he will need most is a bit of gumption.

(Gumption: n. Courage; spunk; fortitude; resourcefulness; good sense.)

Oh, wait...there are crocodiles in the river? Then he might need a lot of it!
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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
When Peter's favorite Uncle Nigel takes him on an expedition to Africa, their first goal is to see a “Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla.” As Peter struggles during their five-mile hike, good-natured Uncle Nigel insists that he can do it, telling him, “All it takes is a bit of gumption.” The book's humor is provided by Egielski's (The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan) expert watercolors that show Uncle Nigel's upbeat obliviousness while Peter gets a helping hand from some wild animals in nearly wordless four-panel scenes (a snake, elephant, and one of the rare gorillas help him negotiate the terrain, and later Peter rescues his uncle from an alligator). Throughout, Uncle Nigel is totally unaware of the danger. Broach (When Dinosaurs Came with Everything) plays with the familiar British explorer stereotype (Uncle Nigel gets plenty of lines like “Jolly good, Peter!” and “I say! Elephant dung!”), and Egielski's twig-bordered paintings have a Teddy Roosevelt adventurousness that will keep readers giggling at how hapless some grownups—and how resourceful some children—can be. Ages 4-8. (Apr.)
School Library Journal
PreS-Gr 2—As this story opens, Uncle Nigel has just invited young Peter to accompany him on an expedition to Africa to search for the rare and wild "Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla." In matching khaki shorts and pith helmets, the two set off. When the boy expresses trepidation at each obstacle they encounter (a dense thicket, the sun-scorched plain, etc.), the man replies, "Nonsense, my boy! All it takes is a bit of gumption." Ironically, as the elder forges on with great effort, Peter is assisted by an assortment of jungle creatures, each of whom also snitches part of his uncle's gear. These moments, where "Peter tried to follow," are depicted in a sequence of four vertical panels per spread, thus conveying a lot of action in a compressed space. The last helper is none other than the rare gorilla, who carries Peter on his back while all Uncle Nigel sees is footprints. Egielski's style is similar to his work in Jonah Winter's The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert & Sullivan (Scholastic, 2009). The characters are foregrounded, their feet close to the branchlike borders that frame each scene. The depth of field is shallow, as if the action is playing out on a stage. The repetitive phrases, succinct text, bold watercolors, and heavy black outlines combine to make this a successful selection for group sharing. Youngsters will enjoy being in on the humor created by a clueless adult and animal antics. They'll also absorb a new word—and possibly an attitude.—Wendy Lukehart, Washington DC Public Library
Kirkus Reviews
Peter's Uncle Nigel, explorer by trade, knows how to show his nephew a good time. When next he sets off to Africa to find the Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla, young Peter is right by his side. There are lots of dangers lurking in the wild, however, and whenever Peter calls upon his uncle for help he's met with a jolly, "Nonsense, my boy! All it takes is a bit of gumption." Peter soon finds his way, swinging on pythons, leaping on crocs and even catching a ride on the back of the gorilla itself, while his oblivious uncle charges onward. Broach fills this spunky story with delicious language, including words like "zonked" and "dung." Egielski is in fine form, his boldly outlined watercolors fairly luminous and bursting with life. Readers who keep their eyes open wider than Uncle Nigel will also discover a host of delicate details hidden within the images. Altogether a hearty delight for any young adventurer with a drop or two of gumption. (Picture book. 4-8)
From the Publisher
Peter’s Uncle Nigel, explorer by trade, knows how to show his nephew a good time. When next he sets off to Africa to find the Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla, young Peter is right by his side. There are lots of dangers lurking in the wild, however, and whenever Peter calls upon his uncle for help he’s met with a jolly, “Nonsense, my boy! All it takes is a bit of gumption.” Peter soon finds his way, swinging on pythons, leaping on crocs and even catching a ride on the back of the gorilla itself, while his oblivious uncle charges onward. Broach fills this spunky story with delicious language, including words like “zonked” and “dung.” Egielski is in fine form, his boldly outlined watercolors fairly luminous and bursting with life. Readers who keep their eyes open wider than Uncle Nigel will also discover a host of delicate details hidden within the images. Altogether a hearty delight for any young adventurer with a drop or two of gumption. (Picture book. 4-8) -- KIRKUS, March 15, 2010

When Peter's favorite Uncle Nigel takes him on an expedition to Africa, their first goal is to see a “Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla.” As Peter struggles during their five-mile hike, good-natured Uncle Nigel insists that he can do it, telling him, “All it takes is a bit of gumption.” The book's humor is provided by Egielski's (The Fabulous Feud of Gilbert and Sullivan) expert watercolors that show Uncle Nigel's upbeat obliviousness while Peter gets a helping hand from some wild animals in nearly wordless four-panel scenes (a snake, elephant, and one of the rare gorillas help him negotiate the terrain, and later Peter rescues his uncle from an alligator). Throughout, Uncle Nigel is totally unaware of the danger. Broach (When Dinosaurs Came with Everything) plays with the familiar British explorer stereotype (Uncle Nigel gets plenty of lines like “Jolly good, Peter!” and “I say! Elephant dung!”), and Egielski's twig-bordered paintings have a Teddy Roosevelt adventurousness that will keep readers giggling at how hapless some grownups—and how resourceful some children—can be. Ages 4–8. March 8, 2010 - Publishers Weekly

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Young Peter is thrilled to join his favorite Uncle Nigel on an expedition to Africa to search for the rare Zimbobo Mountain Gorilla. But the trip is not an easy one, and when they start climbing a mountain in the jungle, Peter finds it hard to get through a thicket. Uncle Nigel assures him that it just takes "a bit of gumption," And they continue on. At each difficult spot, his uncle repeats his advice. But as we see in the illustrations, unnoticed by Uncle Nigel, Peter is coping with a series of amazing adventures. Full-page and double-page pictures in vine-bordered frames display Peter's encounters; we follow his predicaments and their solutions in four framed scenes across the pages. Pen and ink and intense watercolors create attractive jungle scenes while our main characters are shown in explorer's outfits complete with backpacks and pith helmets. There's a sense of comic silent films in the almost-retro illustrations, making the text almost redundant. Perhaps more amusing adventures of Peter and Uncle Nigel are to come. Don't miss the lush endpapers. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781416980469
  • Publisher: Atheneum Books for Young Readers
  • Publication date: 6/28/2011
  • Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
  • Format: NOOK Kids
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 1,185,776
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • File size: 16 MB
  • Note: This product may take a few minutes to download.

Meet the Author

Elise Broach lives with her family in rural Connecticut, where she writes books for children and teens, including When Dinosaurs Came With Everything, Shakespeare’s Secret and Wet Dog!, and serves in town government. Visit Elise at www.elisebroach.com.
Richard Egielski received the Caldecott Medal for his illustrations in Hey, Al, written with Arthur Yorinks. His other books include Gumption by Elise Broach, and Buz and Jazper, which were chosen as New York Times Best Illustrated Books for Children. He lives with his wife and son in Milford, New Jersey.
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