Later, Gator

Later, Gator

by Laurence Yep, Eric Valasquez
     
 

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Teddy decides to purchase an extraordinary gift for his brother's birthday -- a true surprise. What could be more astonishing than a meat-eating, jaw-snapping baby alligator! Will this gift cool off their sibling rivalry?

Overview

Teddy decides to purchase an extraordinary gift for his brother's birthday -- a true surprise. What could be more astonishing than a meat-eating, jaw-snapping baby alligator! Will this gift cool off their sibling rivalry?

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Adopting a light tone far removed from the solemnity of Hiroshima (see boxed review, page 297), Yep trains his attention on a close-knit family in San Francisco's Chinatown. Teddy's mother, insisting that he put some effort into choosing a birthday present for his practically perfect younger brother, sends him to the pet shop to buy a turtle. But Teddy, no paragon, picks out a baby alligator instead, hoping to horrify little Bobby. (A note tacked onto the end of the novel advises readers on more humane approaches to choosing a pet.) Bobby, however, is thrilled, and Teddy finds himself working with Bobby to persuade their parents to let the alligator stay. Yep's portrayal of the family is warm, wise and humorous. In examining classic issues like sibling rivalry, he adds the special filter of the Chinese American experience: just after Teddy complains to his mother that everyone likes Bobby better than him, Teddy tells the reader, ``Right about now I could have really used a hug. My parents, though, never showed their affection like the white parents on television. I wanted a hug so bad that it almost hurt.'' The story may be a slender one, but the insights here are generous. Ages 8-12. (May)
Children's Literature - Marilyn Courtot
Bobby and Teddy are not particularly close friends, but the tie that binds is blood-they are brothers. Teddy decides to get his "wonderful" brother Bobby a birthday present that he is sure to dislike. What a surprise, Bobby is thrilled with the baby alligator. It is a pet that creates quite a bit of turmoil in the family. As the brothers are drawn to the baby gator and have to defend it against the family and their slightly nutty landlord, they learn a lot about themselves and each other and finally become friends. It is an amusing story of sibling rivalry within an extended Chinese family; a tale that will appeal to boys and girls. 1997 (orig.
Stephanie Zvirin
Teddy thinks his younger brother, Bobby, is too good to be true--helpful, kind, thoughtful, and a whole lot more that Teddy isn't. In a burst of silly spite, he buys Bobby a baby alligator as a birthday-present prank. To his complete surprise, Bobby loves the gift, which proceeds to cause all kinds of household havoc before it escapes and eventually dies. The reptile's death is given its due, but this isn't a sad book. There are lots of funny interchanges among Teddy's extended family as they view the "beast," with Teddy's serious father serving as a great comic foil. A sense of San Francisco's Chinatown is folded nicely into the telling, and Yep doesn't forget the brotherly rivalry that started everything: it turns out that Teddy's mischievous gift brings the boys closer together than ever before. With an afterword providing perspective on endangered species and pet keeping, this is a spirited comedy kids will thoroughly enjoy.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780613023566
Publisher:
San Val, Incorporated
Publication date:
05/28/1997
Product dimensions:
5.28(w) x 7.68(h) x 0.59(d)
Age Range:
8 - 12 Years

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