Looking for the Easy Life


Life's pretty good on Monkey Island. All day long, the monkeys sit around talking their monkey talk and enjoying their big-time monkey dreams.

That is, except Oswego Pete, who is one slick monkey.

He's bent on finding the Easy Life?a place where a monkey never has to bend ...

See more details below
BN.com price
(Save 9%)$16.99 List Price

Pick Up In Store

Reserve and pick up in 60 minutes at your local store

Other sellers (Hardcover)
  • All (33) from $1.99   
  • New (16) from $5.60   
  • Used (17) from $1.99   
Note: Kids' Club Eligible. See More Details.
Sending request ...


Life's pretty good on Monkey Island. All day long, the monkeys sit around talking their monkey talk and enjoying their big-time monkey dreams.

That is, except Oswego Pete, who is one slick monkey.

He's bent on finding the Easy Life—a place where a monkey never has to bend all out of shape for a banana, or do any hard work, ever.

Is it where the high grass grows at the foot of the mountain?

Or down by the seaside?

Uh-Huh Freddie, the Chief Monkey, says easy isn't always good, and a little hard work's not always bad.

Who's right?

You will learn how to find the Easy Life in this witty adventure from popular author Walter Dean Myers and artist Lee Harper.

Read More Show Less

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly
Oswego Pete, a stringy-looking monkey, sweet-talks his four monkey friends into setting off on a quest for the "Easy Life"; even stolid Uh-Huh Freddie, the chief monkey, gets suckered into the trip. But after a lion eats half of Oswego Pete's tail, a shark chomps off another quarter, and a group of Hip-Hop Hippos keep the monkeys as servants ("...it is not the life for no self-respecting monkey," Uh-Huh Freddie complains. "I got some big-time monkey dreams I need to get back to"), the whole gang realizes that the "Easy Life" may require some initiative after all. Myers (Muhammad Ali: The People's Champion) offers deft characterizations and quick retorts ("How come you ain't got no lips?" Oswego Pete asks the shark. "'Cause I don't want nothing between me and my lunch!"), and Harper's (Woolbur) animals grin and flirt engagingly. It's tough to side with responsible Uh-Huh Freddie when all the attention is focused on hapless Oswego Pete, but in a book far less serious than his norm, Myers demonstrates a profound talent for kid-pleasing humor—it's a story-time natural. Ages 4–8. (Feb.)
ALA Booklist
Praise for Ida B. Wells: “Masterful.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
Praise for Ida B. Wells: “Accessible to younger elementary audiences.”
Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books
Praise for Ida B. Wells: “Accessible to younger elementary audiences.”
School Library Journal
Gr 2–4—The monkeys on Monkey Island think they have it pretty good until Oswego Pete says he's looking to lead an "Easy Life." All he wants to do is lay back and relax. Uh-Huh Freddie, their leader, can see where this is going but when all the other monkeys agree with Oswego Pete, they set off to find another part of the island to find the Easy Life. On their way they come upon a lion who decides they would make a great dinner and after tousling with him, Oswego Pete ends up losing some of his tail. The lion won't give it back because he worked hard for it. And so it goes as they encounter a shark and some hip-hop hippos. By the end, the monkeys realize that working hard is not such a bad thing and they abandon their quest for a cushy life. This Aesop-like tale is written in African-American dialect, and Myers's turns of phrase are as funny as can be. It will make a great read-aloud. In case children miss the lesson, Uh-Huh Freddie sums it all up at the end of the story. The illustrations are cartoony and as silly as the monkeys in their colorful attire.—Joan Kindig, James Madison University, Harrisonburg, VA
Read More Show Less

Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060543754
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/1/2011
  • Series: Looking at Other Countries Series
  • Pages: 40
  • Sales rank: 812,090
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: 750L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 11.10 (h) x 0.40 (d)

Meet the Author

Walter Dean Myers is the New York Times bestselling author of Monster, the winner of the first Michael L. Printz Award, the current National Ambassador for Young People's Literature, and inaugural NYC Literary Honoree. Myers has received every single major award in the field of children's literature. He is the author of two Newbery Honor Books and five Coretta Scott King Awardees. He is the recipient of the Margaret A. Edwards Award for lifetime achievement in writing for young adults and is a three-time National Book Award Finalist as well as the first-ever recipient of the Coretta Scott King–Virginia Hamilton Award for Lifetime Achievement. He was the 2010 United States nominee for the Hans Christian Andersen Award, and is considered one of the preeminent writers for young people. Walter lives in Jersey City, New Jersey, with his family.

Lee Harper is an artist, teacher, and storyteller. Looking for the Easy Life is his fourth picture book. Lee also illustrated woolbur, by Leslie Helakoski, with "lumpy, expressive ovines, especially the wild-wooled Woolbur," that brought the "delightful tale of independence to life" (Kirkus Reviews); Turkey Trouble, by Wendi Silvano; and Snow! Snow! Snow!, the first book he both wrote and illustrated. Lee lives in Doylestown, Pennsylvania, with his family.

Read More Show Less

Customer Reviews

Be the first to write a review
( 0 )
Rating Distribution

5 Star


4 Star


3 Star


2 Star


1 Star


Your Rating:

Your Name: Create a Pen Name or

Barnes & Noble.com Review Rules

Our reader reviews allow you to share your comments on titles you liked, or didn't, with others. By submitting an online review, you are representing to Barnes & Noble.com that all information contained in your review is original and accurate in all respects, and that the submission of such content by you and the posting of such content by Barnes & Noble.com does not and will not violate the rights of any third party. Please follow the rules below to help ensure that your review can be posted.

Reviews by Our Customers Under the Age of 13

We highly value and respect everyone's opinion concerning the titles we offer. However, we cannot allow persons under the age of 13 to have accounts at BN.com or to post customer reviews. Please see our Terms of Use for more details.

What to exclude from your review:

Please do not write about reviews, commentary, or information posted on the product page. If you see any errors in the information on the product page, please send us an email.

Reviews should not contain any of the following:

  • - HTML tags, profanity, obscenities, vulgarities, or comments that defame anyone
  • - Time-sensitive information such as tour dates, signings, lectures, etc.
  • - Single-word reviews. Other people will read your review to discover why you liked or didn't like the title. Be descriptive.
  • - Comments focusing on the author or that may ruin the ending for others
  • - Phone numbers, addresses, URLs
  • - Pricing and availability information or alternative ordering information
  • - Advertisements or commercial solicitation


  • - By submitting a review, you grant to Barnes & Noble.com and its sublicensees the royalty-free, perpetual, irrevocable right and license to use the review in accordance with the Barnes & Noble.com Terms of Use.
  • - Barnes & Noble.com reserves the right not to post any review -- particularly those that do not follow the terms and conditions of these Rules. Barnes & Noble.com also reserves the right to remove any review at any time without notice.
  • - See Terms of Use for other conditions and disclaimers.
Search for Products You'd Like to Recommend

Recommend other products that relate to your review. Just search for them below and share!

Create a Pen Name

Your Pen Name is your unique identity on BN.com. It will appear on the reviews you write and other website activities. Your Pen Name cannot be edited, changed or deleted once submitted.

Your Pen Name can be any combination of alphanumeric characters (plus - and _), and must be at least two characters long.

Continue Anonymously

    If you find inappropriate content, please report it to Barnes & Noble
    Why is this product inappropriate?
    Comments (optional)