PeeWee's Tale

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This funny and inspiring story of a lost and lovable guinea pig is now available in paperback. PeeWee, once a boy’s dear pet, has been secretly released into the wilds of Central Park. But instead of relishing his freedom, PeeWee is at first a stranger in a strange land—until he meets Lexi, a city-wise squirrel who gives his new stubby-tailed friend some tips, as well as some confidence. It’s not long before a series of perilous and eye-opening adventures turns this timid house ...
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PeeWee's Tale

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This funny and inspiring story of a lost and lovable guinea pig is now available in paperback. PeeWee, once a boy’s dear pet, has been secretly released into the wilds of Central Park. But instead of relishing his freedom, PeeWee is at first a stranger in a strange land—until he meets Lexi, a city-wise squirrel who gives his new stubby-tailed friend some tips, as well as some confidence. It’s not long before a series of perilous and eye-opening adventures turns this timid house pet into an endearing hero.

Author Biography: Johanna Hurwitz is the award-winning author of many popular books for young readers, including Class Clown and Rip-Roaring Russell. She has received a number of child-chosen state awards, including the Texas Bluebonnet Award and the Kentucky Bluegrass Award. Ms. Hurwitz lives in Great Neck, New York, and Wilmington, Vermont.

When his owner's parents let him go in Central Park, a young guinea pig learns to survive in the natural world with the help of a "park-wise" squirrel while trying to find his way back home.

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Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
A guinea pig narrates Hurwitz's (One Small Dog) endearing story of the furry fellow's adventures in New York's Central Park. Nine-year-old Robbie, though disappointed when his uncle gives him a guinea pig rather than a puppy for his birthday ("I ran around inside my cage, trying to act like a puppy," says the narrator), soon grows fond of PeeWee. Not so his skittish mother who, one day while Robbie is at a sleepover, instructs her husband to set the critter loose in Central Park. PeeWee is at loose ends in this alien environment, but his new pal, Lexi the squirrel, passes on survival strategies (e.g., "Don't count your nuts until they are shelled"). PeeWee responds in kind by using his unorthodox skill: he learned to read from his mother, who lived in a cage in a schoolroom, and warns Lexi about the city's plan to cut down the tree that Lexi calls home. Through PeeWee's perspective, Hurwitz delivers some humorous and insightful observations about the urban outdoors and brings the tale to a satisfying resolution. Brewster's engaging, black-and-white spot art will draw readers into this story, and the smaller-than-average trim size complements its diminutive star. Ages 7-10. (Oct.) Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Children's Literature
Pee-Wee is the birthday present for a nine-year-old boy named Robbie Fischler. PeeWee soon realizes that Robbie really wanted a puppy and that Robbie's mom thinks he is a "disgusting creature." Pee-Wee puts on his best show, rubbing against Robbie like he saw the kittens do at the pet shop and wagging his stub-of-a-tail like a puppy. Robbie and Pee-Wee become fast friends¾Pee-Wee has a clean cage with food and fresh scraps of paper from the daily news (which he reads on a regular basis). Even better, Robbie treats Pee-Wee like a dog, letting him roam freely around his room, living a good life. Robbie's mother calls Pee-Wee a dirty rodent and is so paranoid that he will wander into her bedroom at night that she devises a sinister plan. She convinces Mr. Fischler to let Pee-Wee go to Central Park one night when Robbie is at a sleepover, telling Robbie that he has escaped from his cage. Pee-Wee discovers an entirely different world and fortunately, also finds a new friend, Lexi the squirrel, who is happy to teach him the ways of the wild. He has never seen such delights as ice cream sticks, candy wrappers, bits of sandwiches, and sweet apples, which Lexi shared with him. But Pee-Wee misses Robbie, and when he sets out to find him again, he uncovers more than he bargained for. Through a series of adventures, he saves Lexi, learns something shocking about Robbie, and discovers freedom and friendship. Written from Pee-Wee's point of view, this chapter book will delight beginning readers and animal lovers while sharing some very important lessons. The wide-eyed sketches of Pee-Wee and Lexi ignite the imagination. 2000, SeaStar Books, . Ages 5 to 7. Reviewer: Leslie Julian
School Library Journal
Gr 2-4-A charming chapter book for newly independent readers. Your average guinea pig would be ill-equipped for the rigors of life in New York City's Central Park, but PeeWee is far from average. He has learned to read from the newspaper scraps on the bottom of his cage. That talent alone isn't enough to protect him from the myriad perils of the park, but fortunately PeeWee also befriends a squirrel who teaches him how to watch his back. The story is loaded with simple, generally nonintrusive messages about the values of friendship, freedom, and reading. PeeWee is an appealing protagonist, intelligent and resourceful and brave when it really counts. The park's animal inhabitants always act in character for their various species as they scratch, scamper, and dig their way around their leafy urban home. Brewster's black-and-white drawings depict PeeWee and his squirrel friend as rumpled, big-eyed cuties, but PeeWee's many brushes with danger provide more than enough drama to offset the occasionally excessive sweetness of the illustrations.-Beth Wright, Fletcher Free Library, Burlington, VT Copyright 2000 Cahners Business Information.
Kirkus Reviews
A precocious guinea pig finds himself adrift in Central Park in a tale of high adventure. Readers follow Pee-Wee's progress as he moves from pet shop to the apartment of his new owner, Robbie. When Robbie's mother's abhorrence of anything rodent-like leads to Pee-Wee's abrupt arrival in the park, the naïve foundling endures several harrowing encounters with creatures of both the two-legged and four-legged variety. With the help of his new squirrel friend Lexi, Pee-Wee soon acquires some street smarts and a taste for freedom. A remarkable ability to read—he was taught by his mother from the newspaper scraps underneath their cage—enables Pee-Wee to warn Lexi and some other squirrel families that their trees are going to be cut down, engendering for him hero status among the park animals. When he discovers Robbie at the park one day, Pee-Wee decides that, perilous though it may be, he has learned to love his freedom. Told from the guinea pig's perspective, the animals in Hurwitz's tale come off sounding a whole lot more reasonable than their human counterparts. She liberally infuses the story with wry humor; the fast-talking Lexi's speech is peppered with adages that have received a squirrel twist—"A nut in the jaw is worth two in the paw"—and keeps the tale moving at a swift pace. Brewster's appealing pencil sketches appear sporadically throughout the text, complementing the tale. Winsome drawings depicting Pee-Wee's wide-eyed gaze and stout, fluffy little body are sure to melt even the hardest of hearts. A caveat: this tale of freedom gained may leave readers longing to emancipate their own caged darlings. (Fiction. 7-9)Ibbotson, Eva ISLAND OF THE AUNTS Kevin Hawkes Dutton (276 pp.) Oct. 2000
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9781587171116
  • Publisher: Chronicle Books LLC
  • Publication date: 9/1/2001
  • Series: Park Pals Adventures Series
  • Pages: 104
  • Sales rank: 382,436
  • Age range: 7 - 10 Years
  • Product dimensions: 4.87 (w) x 7.00 (h) x 0.37 (d)

Meet the Author

Johanna Hurwitz has written over 50 popular books for young readers, including Oh No, Noah!, Class Clown, Rip-Roaring Russell, and the other Park Pals adventures, PeeWee's Tale and Lexi's Tale. She lives in Great Neck, New York.

Patience Brewster has illustrated more than 30 books for children, including Bear's Christmas Surprise and Queen of May. Ms. Brewster lives in Skaneateles, New York.

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Customer Reviews

Average Rating 5
( 6 )
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Sort by: Showing all of 6 Customer Reviews
  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2014


    Peeps gunna judge..

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  • Anonymous

    Posted September 3, 2014


    Tats why we hide. Move to res five

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  • Anonymous

    Posted June 9, 2009

    Pee Wee's Tale was amazing

    This book was adventurous. It was about a rodent that Robbie got for his birthday. He wanted a dog. But then he liked him/ The mother didn't like it so she threw it outside and Pee Wee went to Central Park. I recommend this book to people who like adventurous books because that is what the book is about. I liked the book jacket because it kind of shoots you into the book. I liked Lexi because she kind of pops into it and has a good sense of humor.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted October 18, 2005

    Pee Wee has my son reading!

    This delightful guinea pig, and his squirrel pal Lexi have stolen the heart of my third grade son. He is excited to read the chapters, and will now read independently. This is the first chapter book that he has read. He enjoys reading after school, but can't wait to read some to me before going to bed. We have the next two titles on order.

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  • Anonymous

    Posted December 11, 2002

    A Story of True Friendship and Courage

    We all enjoyed this book because it was a story of a guinea pig and a squirrel that through their friendship helped each other survive. That's what friends are for!

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  • Anonymous

    Posted August 26, 2002

    Super for NYC kids

    This adorable tale takes place in Central Park. I read it aloud to my kindergarten class and my first grade enrichment groups and they loved it! Pee Wee has great lessons to teach and adventures to live. What's better than an unexpected and happy ending?

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