Mosey: The Remarkable Friendship of a Boy and His Elephant

Overview


The true story of Modoc, the greatest elephant that ever lived. This fascinating, action packed story is sure to be a favorite among middle grade readers.

This is the true story of a boy and an elephant who were born at almost the same moment on a German farm in 1896. They were raised together like siblings. The boy, Bram, expects to be a trainer himself when he grows up. But when he is thirteen years old, the circus animals are sold to an American circus. Bram decides to stow ...

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Overview


The true story of Modoc, the greatest elephant that ever lived. This fascinating, action packed story is sure to be a favorite among middle grade readers.

This is the true story of a boy and an elephant who were born at almost the same moment on a German farm in 1896. They were raised together like siblings. The boy, Bram, expects to be a trainer himself when he grows up. But when he is thirteen years old, the circus animals are sold to an American circus. Bram decides to stow sway on the ship to America carrying Modoc. At sea, the ship sinks in a dramatic scene, and Modoc saves the lives of Bram and many others, keeping them afloat after they are too exhausted to swim. When help arrives, the ship can't hold Modoc, and Bram refuses to abandon her. But Bram and Modoc somehow survive. In a postscript, the author describes how the two are separated for a time when Modoc is sold behind Bram's back, but are eventually reunited.

Tells the true story of a boy's devotion to a beloved circus elephant and the ordeals they endured to stay together.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature
Bram is a young man who has a special relationship with Mosey, a talented circus elephant. When the circus is sold and moves, the new owner tries to separate Bram and Mosey, but Bram refuses to let her go. With the help of his friends and support of his mother, Bram works hard to protect Mosey by stowing away on the ship that carries her from their German home toward America. They survive months at sea and extreme circumstances. When a hurricane crosses the ship's path, Bram's love for Mosey is tested, and proved. This is based on a true story and written by Mosey's owner of 20 years. The plot is a wonderful story and the characters are unique, especially Bram's circus friends. However, not enough background is given in the story's beginning to validate the uniqueness of the relationship that Bram and Mosey share. It is easy to believe that Bram loved this elephant, but the book also tries to show the love that Mosey feels for Bram with a few and seemingly far-fetched examples. Despite this, it makes for an interesting kinship that is shared with the reader. During the storm, as the ship picks up water, the novel picks up speed. It is a hard book to put down, and a touching book to read. 2002, Orchard Books,
— Cherie Haas
VOYA
Born on the same day at the same hour, thirteen-year-old Bram and his elephant friend, Mosey, developed a special connection. When Bram learns that the circus is to be sold and the animals shipped to America, he stows away with Mosey. Before long, an officer discovers Bram and puts him to work in the galley where Bram's hard work and friendly demeanor soon endear him to the crew. Just as circumstances are looking up for Bram, however, an unexpected hurricane blows into the Indian Ocean, sinking the ship. Bram and a fraction of the crew are saved by Mosey, who serves as a living raft until help arrives. The story's action really begins aboard ship. Unfortunately, it takes Helfer half the book to get to there. The power of Bram's friendship with Mosey is well displayed, but readers might have difficulty relating to Bram, who often comes across more mature than his years. The epilogue suggests that Bram and Mosey continued their adventures in India and the United States, in a series of events that might have been better included in the text of the book itself. Regardless, animal lovers will appreciate the friendship between boy and elephant, which stirs the imagination and makes readers wonder if they would have the nerve to act on their love like Bram. VOYA CODES: 3Q 3P M J (Readable without serious defects; Will appeal with pushing; Middle School, defined as grades 6 to 8; Junior High, defined as grades 7 to 9). 2002, Scholastic, 144p,
— Joyce Doyle
School Library Journal
Gr 4-8 A true story of Bram Gunterstein, the son of a circus trainer, and a beloved elephant named Mosey. Born on the same day in 1896, the two were inseparable at Wunderzircus, a small German circus. Bram promised his dying father that he would take care of Mosey but Mr. North, her new owner, doesn't include the young handler in his plans to move the show overseas. Syrupy sentimentality gives way to engaging action when Bram stows away aboard the freighter bound for India. Ultimately he is detected after weeks of hiding in the straw among the elephants and is given the job of tending to the herd. He bravely unchains their legs when a fierce storm breaks up the ship. He finds Mosey floating in the ocean and they survive for days until an Indian ferryboat scoops the elephant up on deck using a cargo net. A short postscript informs readers that the pair eluded Mr. North and they lived together happily ever after in India and America. The author notes the story "is as true as I could make it," but the obvious fictionalizing and lengthy passages of dialogue might raise questions about the realm of possibility. The appeal will be the heartwarming relationship between Bram and his oversized friend and the story will make a great read-aloud for younger students. -Vicki Reutter, Cazenovia High School, NY Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780439293136
  • Publisher: Scholastic, Inc.
  • Publication date: 5/1/2002
  • Edition description: 1ST
  • Pages: 144
  • Age range: 9 - 11 Years
  • Lexile: 690L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 5.78 (w) x 8.57 (h) x 0.61 (d)

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Sort by: Showing 1 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted August 23, 2005

    Modoc is one of the worlds greatest elephants

    This is a heartwarming story about a boy, an elephant and their devotion to one another. Modoc is the heroine of the tale and deserves to be recognized as such. Bram obviously loves Modoc but it is Modoc who is the extraodinary one in my opinion. She risks all and puts her trust in Bram. A wonderful tale and well worth reading. It should get one interested in elephants and other books written by Ralph Helfer.

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