Justin Potemkin and the 500-Mile Race

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Overview

Justin Potemkin is one ambitious hare. Ridiculed for his low status in society and teased relentlessly about his grandfather, who lost the famous Tortoise-Hare Race years ago, Justin is ready for revenge. Up against a dishonest czar, Mos Romoonoff, and an arrogant tortoise named Lenin, the hero of this story is determined to prove that he can race faster than both of them. After losing a clearly rigged race in Russia, Justin teams up with his friends Flamingo Joe and Bob Potamus as they move to America and open ...
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Overview

Justin Potemkin is one ambitious hare. Ridiculed for his low status in society and teased relentlessly about his grandfather, who lost the famous Tortoise-Hare Race years ago, Justin is ready for revenge. Up against a dishonest czar, Mos Romoonoff, and an arrogant tortoise named Lenin, the hero of this story is determined to prove that he can race faster than both of them. After losing a clearly rigged race in Russia, Justin teams up with his friends Flamingo Joe and Bob Potamus as they move to America and open their own raceway. However, Justin will not be satisfied until he has a chance to win against the czar and tortoise, fair and square.
Welling's amusing tale is full of clever wordplay, fun pictures, and multicultural characters. The witty descriptions and dialogue add an element of humor to this story of pride and determination.
Peter Welling is a father of four and grandfather of three. A former art director for Futures Mysterious Anthology Magazine, he continues to contribute to that publication as a regular columnist. Welling teaches writing and illustration courses for Indiana University-Purdue University Indianapolis's Continuing Education Program. He was selected as a Distinguished Alumnus for the Liberal Arts and Sciences Division in 2003 by Indiana University at South Bend and is an active member of the Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators. He is the author and illustrator of three other books for young readers: Andrew McGroundhog and His Shady Shadow; Shawn O'Hisser, the Last Snake in Ireland; and Michael Le Soufflé and the April Fool, all published by Pelican.

After losing the Russian 500 Mile Race to the deceitful Czar Mos, Justin the rabbit and his friends move to America and plan a rematch automobile race at Indianapolis.

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Editorial Reviews

School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-This is a bizarre, pun-filled, cock-and-bull (actually cow-and-hare) story about the origination of the Indianapolis 500. The action starts in Russia, where Czar Mos Romoonoff, a cow, rigs a 500-mile race to guarantee that he will be the winner. Unhappy with the results, Justin Potemkin, a hare, decides to move to America with his friend, Flamingo Joe. Once settled in Indianapolis, the two invite their fellow racers for a rematch, launching the first Indy 500. In the overly cluttered illustrations, watercolors and art markers fill in ink outlines to create anthropomorphized animals-26 are enumerated in an appended glossary, each with its Russian name. Welling tries to be clever-a bearded, robed rat holds up a "Ratsputin" sign; a hamster pulls a cart filled with Welling's three previous books; a German race car that looks like a tank crash-lands the helmet-clad, mustachioed driver in a golf bunker; etc., ad nauseam-but kids sure won't get it and adults just won't care. There is some illustrative talent on display in depicting the antics of this cartoon menagerie but this modern myth about "Russian" toward the "Finnish line" falls flat with its rambling story line, trivial and obscure humor, and stereotypical characters.-John Sigwald, Unger Memorial Library, Plainview, TX Copyright 2004 Reed Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781589801493
  • Publisher: Pelican Publishing Company, Incorporated
  • Publication date: 2/28/2004
  • Pages: 32
  • Age range: 5 - 8 Years
  • Product dimensions: 8.88 (w) x 9.18 (h) x 0.21 (d)

Customer Reviews

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Sort by: Showing all of 2 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted May 9, 2004

    Kids share this book with your parents and grandparents

    My grandson loved this book. I tried to get him to leave it at our house, so we would have something to read the next time he came. Nope. He had to take it home. Secretly, I wanted him to leave this particular book, because Peter J. Welling writes a story that intrigues grown-ups as well as children. The children won't understand the plays on words. They just love the story and the characters. But grown-ups will understand that Peter is writing for them too.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted February 8, 2004

    Outstanding

    Bought based solely on Mr Wellings previous works, and it did not disappoint. He is my Stephen King....I would buy anything he put out. Also bought a great litho from his website.

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