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Can I Play Too? (An Elephant and Piggie Book) Hardcover – June 8, 2010

4.9 out of 5 stars 210 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 2–This beginning reader focuses on differently abled animals as Elephant and Piggy get ready for a game of catch. Before they begin, Snake asks to join them. Simple gestures and facial expressions convey Elephant's embarrassment at Snake's inability to catch a ball. Piggy breaks the silence stating, “You don't have arms!” and Snake dejectedly slithers away. On the next page, Snake diffuses his rejection by saying, “Hee-hee! Ha-ha! Hee-hee! Ha-ha! Hee-hee! I know I do not have arms./I am a snake.” Elephant asks, “But can a snake play catch?” The story moves from clever to cruel as Elephant throws the ball and hits Snake on the head, and the reptile's expressions indicate distress. Piggy follows suit, with the same result. Then Elephant decides, “Maybe we need more balls,” and the next spread shows Elephant and Piggy bombarding Snake with balls, each one hitting him with a “BONK!” and Snake upside down in anguish. Then Piggy gets the idea to use Snake as the ball. Snake happily says, “Whee!” to which Piggy replies, “I love playing catch with my friends!” While all ends on a positive note, Jeanne Willis's Susan Laughs (Holt, 2000) and Grace Maccarone's The Gym Day Winner (Scholastic, 1996) offer more respectful treatments of inclusion.Laura Scott, Farmington Community Library, MI
© Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

As is often the case in Elephant and Piggie’s adventures, they start this one in bliss—happily planning to play catch. But then Snake shows up, and, boy, he’d like to play, too. Once again, Willems wrings maximum humor and melodrama out of spare pencil drawings and the simplest of setups. Snake, you see, is not like Elephant and Piggie—he has no arms—and this allows Willems to take on understanding differences, accepting shortcomings, and sticking up for friends. A minor entry into the series, perhaps, but a worthy one. Preschool-Grade 2. --Daniel Kraus
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - Kindergarten
  • Lexile Measure: 70L (What's this?)
  • Series: An Elephant and Piggie Book
  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion; 1 edition (June 8, 2010)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423119916
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423119913
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.5 x 9.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (210 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #2,187 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Do you like to laugh? We do! That’s why Elephant and Piggie books are our favorite books. Can I Play Too? is the best book because it is funny. In the story there are many funny parts, like when Elephant and Piggie throw a bunch of balls at snake and he cannot catch any of them. Also, it is funny when Piggie points out that snake doesn’t have arms and snake pretends to be surprised by this information. Another reason we like this book is because Piggie comes up with a great idea so everyone can play catch together. She comes up with the idea that they can throw snake, snake loves this idea! This book is so funny. That is why this book and the other Elephant and Piggie books are our favorite books!
** This review was written by my First Grade class. They love these books!
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Format: Hardcover
Elephant and Piggie is one of THE best early-reader series out there.

It's simple. The pictures are helpful, but not TOO helpful. Most importantly - it's not boring! The books are short, containing few words, but the repetition is FUNNY and not too intrusive. ("You do not have arms." "I DO NOT HAVE ARMS?!?!?") It's got to be HARD to write funny books for kids this young. Honestly, I don't think I could do it! And to write one that the kid will want to read over and over again - well! I don't know how Mo Willems does it, frankly.

My favorite part of this book? Hm. Has to be either Snake's (pretend) freakout upon being told that he has no arms OR Piggie's idea, after Snake fails to catch the ball several times, that maaaaaybe what they really need is MORE BALLS! (This works exactly as well as you'd expect.)

Please - check out a copy of this, and other Elephant and Piggie books at your local library. Your resident early reader will thank you for it later :)
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Format: Hardcover
Normally I wait a week or two after we read a book to write about it to see how long my daughter's interest lasts. This book was such a hit I had to gush right away. She loved it! We read it 3 times in a row and she was begging to read it again. I finally had to tell her we would read it again tomorrow and it was time for bed. The book is about a snake that wants to try and play catch with the piggie and elephant despite having no arms. As you can guess they do not have much luck. The story is hilarious and my daughter could not stop laughing. The second and third times through she was giggling in anticipation before we even got to the funny parts.
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Format: Hardcover
Elephant and Piggie have made a new friend. But there is a problem. Their new friend, Snake, wants to play catch with them. But Snake has no hands! How Elephant and Piggie solve the problem so they can play catch with Snake is funny and satisfying.

The illustrations on this book match the text perfectly. They are clear, and the characters facial expressions are drawn so they are easy for kids to understand. The simple text is accessible to the beginning reader, and the humor makes for a book that kids will want to read again and again.
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Format: Hardcover
My children, especially my 6 year old daughter, LOVES the An Elephant and Piggie books. Her school library has a seemingly endless supply of these books and she borrows them constantly. Every week on Library day she brings home two new ones...and we read each book every single night for the entire week! Every story that we've read is LOL funny! I have to admit, that I too love these stories (as does my husband.) This particular book is no exception.

In this story Gerald and Piggie are about to play catch when a snake comes along and asks if he too can play. Gerald and Piggie are not sure HOW a snake can play catch because, after all, he has no arms. Nevertheless, snake wants to try to play and thus the three begin. What proceeds is more dodgeball than catch, except with no dodging, as snake continually gets pummeled by the ball. LOL The three friends try to come up with ideas as to how snake can participate in the game, and after a couple of really silly ones, finally hit on the plan of using snake as the ball! The three then happily embark on their game of catch. LOL

The story is funny, sweet, and engaging. It's well written; the illustrations very simple, yet super expressive. My daughter, who is a first grader can easily read all the Elephant and Piggie books. Because of the simple easy-to-read words used in the stories, I think these books are appropriate for beginning readers...Kindergarteners and Pre-K students.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Several years ago I started buying children's books for the daughter of a friend, and because of that I started getting Amazon's recommendations. I was in a rut with the "usual" books I would buy, and so when I saw "Can I Play too?" I thought I would take a chance. Also, any book that I purchased would also have to do with animals (I do animal rescue). Okay, so I bought four books this year, sent them off and just got the thank you note. My friend wrote "she loved all of them, and especially Elephant & Piggy, "Can I Play too" by Mo Willems (he's one of her favorite authors! She even said oh - it's a Mo Willems Book! As she was opening she said I'll have to send a very nice note." I thought this would help another somebody who has no idea AT ALL on what book to buy a five year old. Some of the sentences of this review might seem a little awkward, but that is the way it was written.
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