Have one to sell? Sell on Amazon
Flip to back Flip to front
Listen Playing... Paused   You're listening to a sample of the Audible audio edition.
Learn more
See this image

Monkey Island Paperback – March 1, 1993


See all 14 formats and editions Hide other formats and editions
Amazon Price New from Used from
Paperback
"Please retry"
$15.99 $0.01
100%20Children%27s%20Books%20to%20Read%20in%20a%20Lifetime

NO_CONTENT_IN_FEATURE

Product Details

  • Age Range: 10 - 14 years
  • Grade Level: 5 - 9
  • Lexile Measure: 830L (What's this?)
  • Paperback: 160 pages
  • Publisher: Yearling (March 1, 1993)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0440407702
  • ISBN-13: 978-0440407706
  • Product Dimensions: 7.5 x 5.1 x 0.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 4.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.1 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (31 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,186,488 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Fox ( The Village by the Sea ) has written a quietly terrifying, wholly compelling novel about the urban homeless, filtered through the experience of an 11-year-old boy. Clay's middle-class existence begins to shred when his art-director father loses his job and, eventually, his connection to his wife and child. He leaves without a word one day, and Clay and his pregnant mother end up in a welfare hotel, a place "where people in trouble waited for something better--or worse--to happen to them." And happen it does, for Clay's mother soon disappears as well, and Clay takes to the streets, to be befriended by two homeless men and reunited with his mother only after great tribulation. Once again Fox displays her remarkable ability to render life as seen by a sensitive child who has bumped up against harsh circumstances. Her understanding of Clay is keenly empathic and intuitive, and it seems near-total: she is as finely attuned to the small, surprising eddies of his thoughts as to their larger and more obvious stream. It is precisely this attention to the quiet, easily lost insight that gives her account its veracity and force. For example, one night Clay and a friend break into a church basement, and Clay spies a bulletin board. He is "faintly surprised. I can read, he thought"--a small jolt that shows us just how far from the world of school and homework he has traveled. Fox neither preaches about nor attempts to soften the stark realities of the life that is, temporarily, thrust upon Clay. Clear-eyed and unblinking as ever, she shows us the grit, misery and despair of the homeless, along with occasional qualified, but nonetheless powerful redemptive moments--the sharing of an apple or kind word by those with little to spare; for Clay, the bright smile of his newborn sister. Ages 10-up.
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From School Library Journal

Grade 5-7-- Eleven-year-old Clay Garrity's family had been what most people would consider an average family--until the magazine his father worked for went out of business and he couldn't find another job over the next year. Clay then experienced the gradual decline from that normal existence to one of abandonment by his father, the move to a welfare hotel and, at the beginning of the story, the disappearance of his mother who, with the added burden of a difficult pregnancy, is unable to cope with the daily struggle for survival. Clay eventually comes to a small park scornfully called "Monkey Island" for the homeless who live there. Here he is taken in by two men who share the wooden crate that offers them some shelter from the cold November winds. These three become a sort of family, holding on to some sense of humanity in a brutal and brutalizing world. For all of its harshness, Monkey Island is also a romanticized view of the world. Although Clay is not spared the hunger, fear, illness, and squalor of the streets, there is still a distancing from the more immediate types of violence that exist there. He is always on the edge of such danger, but no incidents actually touch him. In the end, it is pneumonia that brings him back into the social services system. After ten days in the hospital, the boy is placed in a foster home and shortly thereafter is reunited with his mother and baby sister in a conclusion that readers desire but that may strain credibility. This is a carefully crafted, thoughtful book, and one in which the flow of language both sustains a mood of apprehension and encourages readers to consider carefully the plight of the homeless, recognizing unique human beings among the nameless, faceless masses most of us have learned not to see. --Kay E. Vandergrift, School of Communication, Information and Library Studies, Rutgers University, New Brunswick, NJ
Copyright 1991 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Discover books, learn about writers, read author blogs, and more.

Customer Reviews

4.1 out of 5 stars
Share your thoughts with other customers

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on December 3, 1997
Format: Paperback
I am so thankful that I found this book. I read it in one sitting and am looking forward to sharing it with my 6th-graders. Many of my students are only a few steps away from Clay's street hut. It is for them that I want to shed a light of hope. I think this book can help me do that for them. It is also a great book to read to children who have what they need to stay warm and well-fed. It will afford them the opportunity to get to know someone their age that must go without and take chances that have very uncertain outcomes.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
3 of 4 people found the following review helpful By Michele Slavinski on October 7, 2002
Format: Paperback
Paula Fox does an amazing job depicting homelessness in her book Monkey Island. Clay Garrity, an eleven year old boy, is left to fend for himself after his pregnant mother disappears. He meets two homeless men, Buddy and Calvin, who become his new family on the street. They care for him as best they can but the cold and lack of food are too much for Clay and he has to be taken to a hosiptal. Now he has to depend on Social Services to find out what happened to his mother and his new sibling.
I thought that Fox's description of Clay's life on the street was exceptional. Her language really flowed nicely and I felt like I was experiencing what Clay was. Fox also had the major dramatic question, "What happened to Clay's mother?". This question was the driving force while I read this book. I was so intrigued that I finished the book in one sitting.
The only problem I had with this book was the ending. I didn't think it was realistic. Fox had all of these well portrayed, complex issues throughout the book and the ending just seemed very simplistic compared to everything else.
However, overall I really enjoyed this book. I thought that it was well written, that language flowed together, and that it provided a realistic look at what life would be like on the streets.
I think this book would be a great tool to help teachers to portray homelessness and/or poverty to their students. This book would really force children to look at and understand the social problems that our society has and help them to relate to, and sympathize with, these problems.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Judah on March 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
Young Clay Garrity has been left behind. His father lost his job and left the family, including his pregnant mother. Now, for whatever reason, his mother has also left. Clay must deal with living on his own in fifth grade. He stops going to school and spends a lot of time scared and lonely. Another family moves into his apartment, and he has no place left for himself. This is a realistic tale of what it might mean to be a homeless kid in a big city. No bad language, and Clay does some growing up.

Might open the eyes of spoiled children that another, sorrier world exists, and that the homeless are people too.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
5 of 7 people found the following review helpful By "witch-baby" on July 25, 2000
Format: Paperback
I read this book when I was about eleven or twelve, and at seventeen it still sticks out as one of the most powerful books of my childhood. Very few young adult books capture the beauty and the pain that Monkey Island does. So many young adult novels are pure fluff. Monkey Island, however, deals with a topic very serious: homelessness. By using an eleven year old boy as the main character, it made being homeless seem more personal and real. I recommend this book entirely to pre-teens, teens, or even adults. It is a wonderful story that truly has no age range.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
Format: Paperback
Monkey Island by Paula Fox is about a boy named Clay who wakes up one morning with his mom gone. Although he thinks she'll back sooner or later, she doesn't come back. Luckily, his mom leaves him money while she's gone. Unfortunately, the money doesn't last long and Clay ends up on the streets with his new friends Calvin, Gerald, and Buddy, learning to survive in the "wild". They live a traumatic and eye-opening life on the streets together. They had rough tines with a bunch of teenagers saying "Monkey Island' while laughing at them. Sadly, all four of them get beaten bad especially Buddy, being called out of his name. Though the cold and snow, Clay ends up with the pneumonia and in the hospital.

When Clay ends up in the hospital with pneumonia, Mrs. Greg, an agent of the Social Service, comes to interview him. Mrs. Greg asks Clay, "Do you know what Social Service people do?"

Being free-minded, Clay replies,"Yes. Where they don't help you until after three months or even longer? My mom did that." Clay didn't want foster parents but he knew had to deal with it. Though his foster parents, Mr. and Mrs. Biddles buy him clothes and feeds him well, he's not so happy. So will he ever find his mom?

Fox's Monkey Island teaches an important lesson of the need to be satisfied with what you have and quit complaining about how you can't get what you want. Fox has an obvious message in her writing. This novel would be good for teenagers and even the whole family. Think about it, how would you feel if your mother or father left you alone and never came back? You wouldn't believe how much you need to learn.
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again
2 of 3 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on February 12, 2007
Format: Paperback
This book is filled to the end of each page with mystery, some excitment and creepy action while you read about the life of an 11 year old boy in New York City.

The book Monkey Island is by the author: Paula Fox.

Paula Fox was born in the year 1923 and was left in an orphanage in New York city, the same setting as this book. She was abandond by her mother and father, just as her made up character Clay was, in the book Monkey Island.

Monkey Island is about an 11 year old boy named Clay, who was abandoned by his father. Soon enough, his pregnant mom also disappears without a trace..... Clay decides to go and search for his mother in the vast city of New York when he puts himself in the care of Buddy and an alcoholic Calvin, two other homeless guys.

Clay winds up in the streets, the hospital, Henry and Edwina's house (the couple he lived with after he got out of the hospital), and in the women's shelter. With much determination to find his mother, he stops at nothing to try and find her.

Finaly, Henry and Edwina try to look into an agency to look for his parents. But it's up to you to solve the mystery.

Will Clay ever find his parents...Or will he be lost without hope of ever having a family? Will Calvin live...or die too soon?

Pick it up to solve the mystery for Clay, because you never know what adventures are waiting for you inside Monkey Island.

Monkey Island: By Paula Fox
Comment Was this review helpful to you? Yes No Sending feedback...
Thank you for your feedback. If this review is inappropriate, please let us know.
Sorry, we failed to record your vote. Please try again

Most Recent Customer Reviews


What Other Items Do Customers Buy After Viewing This Item?