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Luke on the Loose: Toon Books Level 2 Hardcover – April 1, 2009

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Luke on the Loose: Toon Books Level 2 + Stinky: Toon Books Level 2 + Otto's Orange Day: Toon Books Level 3
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 170L (What's this?)
  • Series: Toon
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Toon Books (April 1, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1935179004
  • ISBN-13: 978-1935179009
  • Product Dimensions: 6.2 x 0.3 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 7.2 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.2 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (15 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,180,706 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. PreSchool-Grade 2–Bliss has created an ideal graphic novel for emerging readers. While his dad is engaged in &boring talk& with a friend, Luke notices a flock of pigeons and chases after them. The birds lead him out of Central Park through Manhattan and across the Brooklyn Bridge to a quiet rooftop. The cartoon panels are so successful at engaging readers that young children do not have to be able to read the text to enjoy the story. Each drawing is filled with humorous details. In one scene children see a man proposing to his girlfriend before Luke leaps over his café table. Though he creates havoc wherever he goes, he remains oblivious to everything but the pigeons he is chasing. Children will enjoy his rambunctious adventure as he takes them on a spirited tour of New York City. In Benny and Penny, the children are suspicious that their new neighbor has stolen Benny&'s pail, so they sneak into her yard even though they know it&'s a &big no-no!& Through many misunderstandings, they learn to apologize and make a new friend. The simple text uses basic vocabulary and repetition, making it accessible to emerging readers. Young children will love the graphic-novel format and the sweet, charming illustrations will draw them into the narrative. Fans of Geoffrey Hayes&'s popular Benny and Penny: Just Pretend (Toon Bks., 2008) won&'t be disappointed with this sequel.–Mari Pongkhamsing, St. Perpetua School, Lafayette, CA
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved.

From Booklist

Recruiting top talent from in and around the comics field and letting them loose on the page comes up aces for Toon Books once again. Their sweet success this time features the most perseverant character in comics history chasing a flock of pigeons up and down an urban setting. Here is a read that captures the thrill and satisfaction of a successful chase, as African American Luke races through park, sidewalk, street, and straight up to the roofs, much to the consternation of his poor parents, wise-cracking animals, and an array of city-dwellers who demonstrate a welcome racial diversity. Bliss, whose cartoons appear in the New Yorker and who has collaborated with the likes of Sharon Creech (A Fine, Fine School, 2003) and ­Doreen Cronin (Diary of a Spider, 2005), knows how to distill the most evocative moment of time for each panel, but never lets it slow the furious pace, capturing the pure doggedness of a boy who absolutely will not quit until he gets his bird. Preschool-Grade 2. --Jesse Karp

More About the Author

Harry Bliss is a cartoonist and cover artist for The New Yorker magazine and others. His first book A FINE, FINE SCHOOL by Newbery Award winning author Sharon Creech, was a New York Times bestseller. He went on to illustrate many other books, including, WHICH WOULD YOU RATHER BE by William Steig; COUNTDOWN TO KINDERGARTEN by Alison McGhee; the #1 New York Times bestseller DIARY OF A WORM by Doreen Cronin; and LOUISE, THE ADVENTURES OF A CHICKEN by Kate DeCamillo. Harry Bliss lives in South Burlington, Vermont. You can visit him at www.harrybliss.com

Customer Reviews

Still the story is charming and silly, and extremely well illustrated.
I LOVE these books and look forward to reading them many more times with my son.
Julie Peterson
A flock of pigeons catches Luke's eye, and with a blood curdling YAAH!

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By E. R. Bird HALL OF FAMETOP 500 REVIEWER on May 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The TOON Book idea was simple. Produce books for early readers in a comic book format, as created by a variety of different author/illustrators. Cat in the Hat with speech bubbles, if you will. The problem? Children's authors often say that novels are easy and picture books are hard. I'd take that one step further. Picture books are hard but easy books are near impossible. To be truly great you have to reinvent the genre. Seuss did. Mo Willems certainly has with his Elephant and Piggie. And until now the TOON Books have been finding their footing. They've hired a lot of artists that haven't done extensive work in the children's arena, and the result is that they're still figuring out the best way to present their material. And then came Bliss. Harry Bliss has been knocking off picture books left and right for a number of years now. He knows how to make an idea succinct. How to synthesize words into their most essential forms. And best of all, how to make it funny. "Luke on the Loose" may be the best TOON Book to come out so far. Hopping and hip, Bliss takes a simple idea and takes it to its logical extreme.

The first rule of toddler to preschool aged children? You don't let your eyes wander from them for a second. Not so much as a minute. It is a lesson Luke's dad is about to learn. While talking to a fellow grown-up in the park, the man fails to note the moment when Luke, entranced by the sheer proximity of pigeons, takes off with a mighty "YAAH!" Through the streets, over people's heads, around and about and through, Luke is a pigeon-chasing force of nature.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Robert W. Clough on April 18, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The Francoise Mouly-edited Toon Books are among the best edited and conceived books in all of comics (regardless of genre). It's hard to think of a better introduction to the art form than these books, which cleverly disguise their pedagogic nature in the form of their stories. At their heart, these books are Comics 101 courses, carefully breaking down and isolating what makes comics successful and how to make this plain to anyone. Take the covers, for example. Great care is taken to indicate that this isn't simply another illustrated picture book, but rather something far more immersive. The word balloon attached to a character on the cover screams "comics!" and makes a new reader pause to try to figure out how word and image are interacting. Above the main illustration on the cover are a couple of panels depicting action, whetting the reader's appetite for the book's content and again letting them know that this is something different from what they're used to.

After I finished reading Bliss' LUKE ON THE LOOSE, I immediately thought "This is an entry-level Will Elder comic". Reading his bio, he notes that he grew up loving Will Elder, so it was no surprise to see all sorts of eye pops and background gags in addition to the manic main storyline. This story is also a love letter to New York city, in all its diverse glory. It's about a little boy named Luke who squirms away from his father in Central Park in order to chase pigeons, and his tireless chase leads him halfway across the city, causing chaos in his wake.

Bliss packs layers of gags Elder-style on each page, often inserting famous comics characters into his scenes or having animals provide commentary.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Julie Peterson on April 17, 2009
Format: Hardcover
A few months ago, I was lucky enough to receive the Fall 2008 line of Toon Books (see my review.) My son and I both treasure these books, and that's a very good thing because I read them to him all the time! I can't tell you how many times we've read them, but he's still laughs like a nut each and every time. So I was very excited when I received a package with two more of these Toon Books -- THE BIG NO-NO! and LUKE ON THE LOOSE. Both books are part of the Spring 2009 line and will be released in May 2009.

If you're not familiar with Toon Books, they are a line of comics for young readers. TOON Books' Editorial Director Francoise Mouly (who is also Art Editor of The New Yorker) and Advisor Art Spiegelman (author of the Pulitzer Prize-winner MAUS) introduced these books for young readers in Spring 2008. These books have since received loads of terrific praise. Schools are even beginning to use these comics in the classrooms as part of their reading curriculum.

THE BIG NO-NO and LUKE ON THE LOOSE were very similar to the other TOON books that we've read. Since they are in a comic book format, they have loads of pictures with lots of color and are jam-packed with action. There are few words on each page so the early reader won't get easily frustrated; and there is also lots of word repetition -- perfect for a young one who is learning to read. Another huge benefit is that the stories are filled with humor which definitely keeps my little guy interested. Take a look at some sample pages from LUKE ON THE LOOSE to get a better idea of how wonderful these books are!

These books will certainly appeal to kids ages four and up, but I love how they will especially appeal to young boys. Sadly, young boys often times just aren't interested in reading as girls of the same age.
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