I Am Pangoo the Penguin

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Pangoo is a stuffed penguin, but he and his boy Danny are best friends. They love to do everything together, especially visit the Central Park zoo. But when Danny gets newer stuffed animals for his birthday, Pangoo is left behind, wondering where he belongs... is it with the real penguins he sees with Danny every Saturday, swimming at the zoo?

With hints of classics such as The Velveteen Rabbit and Are You My Mother?, Satomi Ichikawa brings ...

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Overview

Pangoo is a stuffed penguin, but he and his boy Danny are best friends. They love to do everything together, especially visit the Central Park zoo. But when Danny gets newer stuffed animals for his birthday, Pangoo is left behind, wondering where he belongs... is it with the real penguins he sees with Danny every Saturday, swimming at the zoo?

With hints of classics such as The Velveteen Rabbit and Are You My Mother?, Satomi Ichikawa brings readers an adorable new character to love in this universal story about friendship and belonging.

About the Author: Satomi Ichikawa lives in Paris, France.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
As Ichikawa's (You Are My I Love You) charming story opens, Pangoo the penguin says, "I love Danny and Danny loves me." This affable stuffed animal, sporting a scarf and sweater vest, accompanies his cherubic, towheaded owner everywhere. A series of adorable spot illustrations attest to them playing, eating and sleeping together. Pangoo especially loves visiting the penguins at the Central Park Children's Zoo. But after Danny receives a menagerie of new stuffed toys for his birthday, he brings them to bed while Pangoo spends the night alone for the very first time. The next morning, Pangoo decides to join the penguins in the zoo. When one of the zoo penguins asks him if he likes living in the cold, eating fish and swimming, however, Pangoo dejectedly decides that he "cannot belong with them." Suddenly he hears Danny, who has come in search of him, and the two have a joyful reunion. As the tyke snuggles with Pangoo at bedtime, the penguin happily concludes, "I know just where I belong." Echoing the winsome tenor of the text, Ichikawa's unadorned, softly focused watercolor art reflects both the hero's emotions and his unconditional love for his toddler owner. Ages 4-up. (Sept.) Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Children's Literature - Ken Marantz
Pangoo, the jauntily dressed penguin, introduces himself on the jacket and marches across the endpapers to perch on the armchair next to Danny announcing, "I love Danny and Danny loves me." They have done everything together since Danny was a baby. Now they enjoy going to the zoo with Grandma to watch the penguins swim. But one day Pangoo is disturbed by Danny's birthday party excitement, and particularly at being left behind in favor of Danny's new toys. So Pangoo sets out to join his fellow penguins at the zoo. There he discovers that he really does not belong with them; he cannot swim or eat fish. He feels alone and unloved until Danny and Grandma come to find him and bring him home. He is happy to know "just where I belong." This warmhearted fable told by an anthropomorphic stuffed penguin is visualized in naturalistic watercolors. Double-page scenes use the city street and zoo paths to enhance his adventures. Ichikawa animates her characters with delightful grace: a double-page "story board" of seven snapshots of Danny at play demonstrates the potent relationship he has with the convincingly interactive Pangoo. The several scenes with the zoo penguins are particularly esthetically happy.
School Library Journal
PreS-K-A stuffed penguin that has been a child's constant companion since infancy tells this cozy story. When new toys appear at Danny's birthday party and threaten Pangoo's status, he runs away to find a new home. First, he heads for the penguins at the Central Park Zoo. Once there, though, he sees that he doesn't fit in. He doesn't eat fish or like living in the cold like the real animals. Pangoo's realization of his proper place won't come as a surprise to adults, but the reassuring ending will be comforting to young children. The tale, smoothly and concisely written, is familiar, but Ichikawa's lovely watercolors are distinctive, making splendid use of line and color to convey character and atmosphere. The figures seem to have real depth and weight, and, especially in the pictures of Danny tumbling about as a baby, movement as well. The blue showing Pangoo alone and forgotten after Danny opens his gifts is an icy, isolating color, while the blue of the water where the zoo penguins swim is charged with green and full of life.-Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL Copyright 2006 Reed Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A penguin finds out where he belongs in this gentle tale of the love between a boy and his favorite stuffed friend. Pangoo and Danny have been best friends since Danny was a baby. They do everything together, including a weekly visit to the penguins at the Central Park Zoo. But after Danny's birthday party, Pangoo is left out of the crowd on Danny's bed, sure that he is no longer loved. So, he decides to go live with the penguins at the zoo. But he doesn't like the cold, he can't swim and he has never eaten fish. Where does he belong? In the nick of time, Danny arrives to scoop him up and answer his question. The text's short sentences are just right for those beginning to read on their own. Ichikawa's watercolors tenderly paint the wonderful relationship between Danny and Pangoo, as well as the tumultuous feelings of the penguin when he believes he has been replaced. She also manages to convey a sense of the city. A nice addition to the stuffed-animal genre. (Picture book. 4-8)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780399233135
  • Publisher: Penguin Publishing Group
  • Publication date: 9/7/2006
  • Pages: 40
  • Age range: 3 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.90 (w) x 10.76 (h) x 0.40 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted February 2, 2008

    Corduroy and Velveteen Rabbit with a penguin!

    My daughter LOVES penguins and pretending her very favorite toy, a stuffed penguin, is real. We actually have gone to the zoo with our own pangoo named 'Stanley' and watched as the other penguins try to make friends. This book is very cute! It is kind of a combo of Corduroy and the Velveteen Rabbit in that the penguin has real feelings and a need to be loved by the boy. I would recommend it to the toddler/preschool age group. Very simple yet adorable text and cute pictures!

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