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Leo the Late Bloomer Paperback – April 19, 1994


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Leo the Late Bloomer + Chrysanthemum + First Day Jitters (Mrs. Hartwell's Class Adventures)
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Paperback: 32 pages
  • Publisher: HarperCollins; Reissue edition (April 19, 1994)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 006443348X
  • ISBN-13: 978-0064433488
  • Product Dimensions: 11.2 x 8.4 x 1.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.6 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.5 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (66 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #11,881 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Antic illustrations add a comic edge to a sweetly reassuring tale about a tiger cub who eventually catches up to his more accomplished animal friends. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1994 Reed Business Information, Inc.

About the Author

Robert Kraus is the author of Little Louie the Baby Bloomer and Leo the Late Bloomer, illustrated by Jose Aruego, and the author and illustrator of dozens of books for children.

In His Own Words...

"Jose Aruego’s books for young readers have earned the applause of critics, teachers, librarians, and parents -- as well as the affection of children everywhere. Mr. Aruego’s comic animals are immediately recognizable as they cavort through clear, vibrant landscapes, carrying out the action that the simple text has set in motion. It is a style one reviewer has termed “illustrative mime.”

"Jose Aruego was born in the Philippines, where he studied law and became a member of the Bar. But after practicing briefly, he decided to come to the United States to study graphic arts and advertising at Parsons School of Design in New York City. After graduation, he worked in adver-tising before taking up the demanding job of cartooning for The Saturday Evening Post, The New Yorker, Look, and other magazines. “Every Wednesday I would go to the cartoon editor with fifteen or sixteen drawings in hand, from which he might select one for publication. The tension was terrible, because selling cartoons was howI made my living. But I learned a lot from the rejected work, so it wasn’t a waste.

"The sink-or-swim experience of drawing cartoons was how I learned to make the most of a small amount of space.” Both abilities have helped him in his career as a children’s book author and illustrator, which he began with the publication of The King and His Friends in 1969.

"Although he is known for his amusing characters, Jose Aruego takes writing and drawing for chil-dren very seriously. After more than three dozen books he feels he is still learning his craft and getting to know his audience. “Each project teaches me something new and makes mea better artist. Each book brings me closer to children.” From the popularity and appeal of Jose Aruego's books, it is obvious that he has both the artistic skill and the imagination to reach the world of children. His work has a distinctive rhythm, and his humorous animal characters have a gaiety and playfulness that children adore.

"I have found from making appearances at schools that when kids draw for themselves, most of them like to make funny pictures. SoI show them how to draw an alligator. It’s a simple drawing and the teachers tell me that after my visit, Aruego alligators show up all over the school.”


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Customer Reviews

Illustrations are wonderful and the story has a great message.
jill r5115
Enter mom....she assures her hubby that all is well...that if they practice patience these things will come to Leo because he is a late bloomer.
Storywraps
I collect children's books, and my husband suggested this one, as he loved it as a child.
BostonMama

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on January 30, 2004
Format: Paperback
Since 1971 the delightful story of Leo the tiger, and proverbial late bloomer, has been charming children and adults. The story of Leo is the story of many a child. He does not speak, or eat nicely. He does not draw or do anything particularly well. This comes as a bit of a concern to Leo's pop, but him mother reassures him that in time Leo will "bloom". The story in and of itself could be made or broken by the illustrations. Put into the wrong hands, this story could easily have been drawn in a syrupy ooey-gooey mentality. There is a definite danger of cutesiness. Illustrator Jose Aruego, however, never allows this to happen. You've not seen such a sad little tiger cub as Leo. In beautiful scenes of subtlety and oomph, Leo's environment, friends, and parents are rendered in interesting and unique ways. The colors are lovely and evocative. And the emotions of the characters are perfect. Every stripe on Leo's body is an undulating shade of purple. Aruego has advanced watercolor to the next level, creating a book that is (no doubt about it) art. If you like art, or watercolors, or cute tiger cubs, then you won't want to miss out on this sweet little number, "Leo the Late Bloomer".
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10 of 10 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on September 17, 1997
Format: Hardcover
What better way to explain to a child that it's OK to be different? Leo the Late Bloomer is a classic of American children's stories with brilliant illustrations that bring the tale to life. Leo the young tiger doesn't lead a "normal" child's life and his Father is constantly worried that something is wrong with his son. Leo experiences many of the childhood frustrations that we are all too familiar with such as being unathletic, unartistic or ostracized by your peers. Over time Leo absorbs what the others have been doing and eventually blossoms with a newfound love for life. This book brilliantly conveys the revelation of a child discovering his or her place in the giant world. Leo the Late Bloomer is a timeless classic with a relevant social message and is an enjoyable read for any age child
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on June 20, 1997
Format: Paperback
Leo the Late Bloomer is THE most memorable story I can recall from my childhood. The illustrations are large and colorful, the text is simple, and the plot is positive and effective as a self-esteem builder for children. I remember feeling so much better about my imperfections after reading or being read Leo the Late Bloomer. I highly suggest this book for all children to funcion as an ego-booster, or simply a "feel-good" book. (It may even make an adult feel more adequate!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By BostonMama on August 26, 2004
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
In a world in which every middle class parent worries if their child isn't top notch in everything, this book is a beautiful classic to remind us all to relax. I collect children's books, and my husband suggested this one, as he loved it as a child. When I got it, I loved it immediately. It assures children and parents that people progress at different levels, but everybody blooms. My husband was a very small child, shorter than everyone in his class, and this book brought him comfort and encouraged him in what he was good at. About 20 or 25 years later, he's a self-confident, very socially adept doctor! I remember struggling very much in kindergarten and first grade with everything from cutting to skipping to math to reading. Everything clicked for me around 2nd or 3rd grade, and school became a breeze after that. I became self-assured, and successful. I wish I'd had this book when I was struggling with those things... I might have been more confident from the start!

For the reviewer concerned that parents would delay help for their children, I doubt a kid's book would have that effect. Parents can tell when something is wrong, and one children's book is going to sway them from taking action!

Oh, and the big bonus... the illustrations are darling, and classic 1970's renderings. The words are absolutely heartwarming!
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By N. M. Rowan on November 17, 2004
Format: Board book
I couldn't help but write a review because of my love for this book's message (and illustrations) in addition to my disagreement to one of the reviewers message concerning the possible delay in diagnosing a child with "special needs." I cannot disagree more - the moral of this story is not psychology or diagnosing a child with special needs. The subject matter deals with "a late bloomer." Lets enjoy the book & its illustrations - this book will not interrupt a parent or their doctor from diagnosing a child who has special needs. It didn't delay my relative's diagnosis. Children will love it.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Dai-keag-ity on September 4, 2005
Format: Library Binding
Leo the Late Bloomer is another in the vast series of books that made my childhood the happy time it was. I know it has a message about bolstering self esteem and being special in who you are, and in feeling confident that if you wait and do your best, your unique talents will blossom before the world, but you know, twenty years later none of that matters a hill of beans to me. What I seriously recall most is that is the colors in Leo are simply wonderful. I'd sit in my cozy miniature chair with the fluffy orange "fur" on it and I'd stare rapt at the vivid, semi-fluorescent day-glo colors of the flowers, of the tiger's fur, of the birds, of what seemed like every part of this genuinely captivating picture book. In terms of visuals alone, this book will draw any child straight into it. Staring at this used to do something positive to my three-year-old brain and make me happy. I'm being serious. Get this for a 3-4-5 year old and watch what they do. I bet dollars to donuts they stare at the colors and sit with their face about an inch off the page.

I don't know what it is about Leo The Late Bloomer, but it connects somehow with the visual/emotional/cognitive centers of the young mind in a way I personally can't remember any other book quite achieving.
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