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Niagara Falls, Or Does It? #1 (Hank Zipzer) Paperback – May 12, 2003


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Frequently Bought Together

Niagara Falls, Or Does It? #1 (Hank Zipzer) + I Got a D in Salami #2 (Hank Zipzer) + Day of the Iguana (Hank Zipzer: The World's Greatest Underachiever #3)
Price for all three: $16.77

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 7 - 11 years
  • Grade Level: 2 - 5
  • Lexile Measure: 610L (What's this?)
  • Series: Hank Zipzer (Book 1)
  • Paperback: 144 pages
  • Publisher: Grosset & Dunlap (May 12, 2003)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0448431629
  • ISBN-13: 978-0448431628
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 0.3 x 7.6 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.7 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (71 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #10,348 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Grade 3-5-On the first day of fourth grade, Hank's teacher assigns a five-paragraph essay, "What I did on my summer vacation," and he knows he's in trouble. It has always been difficult for him to read, write, and spell so he decides to "build" his assignment instead-to "-bring Niagara Falls into the classroom, water and all." With the help of his friends, he creates a working model, complete with water pump, Saran-wrapped tubing, and a papier-mƒch‚ mountain. Predictably, his "living essay" comes to an unfortunate end when a leak leads to a flood and chaos in the classroom. Hank's creativity is rewarded with two weeks' detention and grounding, but his friends are counting on his help for their upcoming magic show. Just when the boy's self-esteem is at its lowest, the new music teacher suspects that he has "learning differences" and suggests that he be tested. Eventually, the misunderstood protagonist convinces his parents to let him perform in the show, which is a big hit, largely thanks to Hank's ingenuity. Less dysfunctional and outrageous than Joey Pigza, Hank Zipzer is the kid next door. Humor, magic, a school bully, a pet dachshund named Cheerio, and a pet iguana that slurps soup at dinner add up to a fun novel with something for everyone.
Barbara Auerbach, New York City Public Schools
Copyright 2003 Reed Business Information, Inc. --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

From Booklist

Gr. 3-5. Actor-director Winkler joins the growing list of celebrities writing children's books with this humorous novel, coauthored by Oliver. Fourth-grade underachiever Hank claims he wants to do the right thing, but somehow he always messes up. Take the assignment Hank's teacher doles out on the first day of school: write a five-paragraph essay, "What I did on my summer vacation." Since writing is hard for him, Hank does a visual presentation on his visit to Niagara Falls instead--and winds up flooding the classroom. Some of the characters are stereotypes, such as buffoonish Principal Love and Hank's overly strict teacher, Ms. Adolf, but others, including Hank, are believable and sympathetic. When the school's music teacher befriends Hank while supervising his detention, he begins to suspect that Hank has a learning problem and suggests that he be tested. At the end, Hank realistically relates his fears about what the test may reveal. Boys who struggle in school will especially appreciate the story, but this enjoyable, fast-paced novel will draw other children as well. Lauren Peterson
Copyright © American Library Association. All rights reserved --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

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Customer Reviews

My daughter really enjoyed reading this book.
Terry Griffin
And since this book has relatable characters such as Hank, students can discuss the impact his learning disability has and how it affects the many aspects of his life.
Melissa R. Nagode
This book would be an excellent classroom read aloud.
Anna M. Allred

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

24 of 24 people found the following review helpful By Eunice Spooner on May 20, 2003
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
This book is "a must read" book for all ages. In this extremely entertaining story you are very apt to recognize some child you know. As a young reader you may gain a better understanding of a friend with a learning disability. If you have a learning disability, you may identify with Hank and his problems and realize you are not alone. Adults will grasp the feelings of a youngster with reading, writing and spelling problems. I highly recommend this book, along with its sequel, "I Got a D in Salami" and look forward to more adventures of Hank Zipzer.
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26 of 29 people found the following review helpful By Tania on December 23, 2003
Format: Paperback
As a ten year old student reporter, I had the honor of interviewing Henry and Lin at a writing conference in Los Angeles. I have read the first three books in this series and look forward to reading all of them. These books are hysterical and moving. As a girl with (around) a twelfth grade reading level, I mostly don't read books as easy as this. But all in all I loved all three. I have read them each about three or four times. Don't you just love the last name "Zipzer"? Anyway, these three books are totally awesome, I will keep on reading them for the rest of my life. As soon as you finish reading this review, buy the Hank Zipzer books. It is worth it. Also, in case you didn't know, Henry Winkler is dyslexic so when you buy his books about a dyslexic boy in many ways you are supporting him. All he wants is for kids to not have to go through what he did as a child. P.S. I didn't mean to sound as if I was bragging before.
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18 of 19 people found the following review helpful By A Customer on November 4, 2003
Format: Paperback
My son, who has dyslexia, loves this series. He actually goes out of his way to read them. Anyone who knows a child, or has a child with dyslexia, knows how difficult it is to get them to read. He cannot wait for the next one to come out.
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16 of 18 people found the following review helpful By Ron Atkins on October 26, 2004
Format: Paperback
Normally, I don't bother reading children's books written by celebrities, but this series of books is funny, lighthearted, and full of the nonsensical humor of the Fonz. In the beginning he describes his 4th grade hero, Hank, as the "world's best underachiever." Hank abhors school essays, so instead of writing about Niagara Falls, he builds a working model of the falls and brings it to class for show and tell. The resulting disaster lands him in the Principal's office. According to the authors Winkler and Oliver, "The hall is a only place when you're sitting outside the Principal's office."

This book is ideal for readers aged 8-10. It uses silly, irreverent, classroom humor to tell the story of a young boy who enlists the aid of his classmates to keep him out of trouble. This is one book in a series of similar stories, and promises good reading for both parents and elementary school kids. As an aspiring writer for children (Abby and the Bicycle Caper), I found this book entertaining and suitable for family reading.
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12 of 13 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 10, 2004
Format: Paperback
Niagara Falls Or Does It, is a book you can call a page turner. It takes place in Hank Zipzer's school where he must face the challenges that his teacher Mrs. Adolf gives him. The book is about the main charecter Hank, and how his teacher Mrs. Adolf assigned him a paper that he has to write a five paragraph essay on what he did over his summer vacation. But instead of writing the paper hank has something else in mind. One thing I learned from this story is always stick to the assignment the teacher gave out, don't try and make up your own. I would also like to say that I would recomend this book to anyone between the ages 9 and up. By being a first person narrotive story this book really showed me what it would be like to walk in someone else's shoes.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By lmj on August 22, 2003
Format: Paperback
As the wife, mother, and teacher of students with learning disabilities, I have lived this story. Mr. Winkler has captured the feelings and behaviors of both the Hank and the teacher, administration, and parents who don't seem to understand.
The interest level is very high. (I am waaaaay beyond 9-12 age). I was on the edge of my chair trying to help Hank through and wondering who was going to rescue him from school bureaucracy.
I can NOT wait for the next one. Keep them coming, Henry.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Maura Valis Lint on July 20, 2006
Format: Paperback
This series is wonderful! While we enjoyed reading each of the books in this series, EVEN BETTER was listening to Henry Winkler read them aloud on the audio version.

My two sons (ages 8 and 11) and I (age 40) were laughing out loud as we listened. Like many other reviewers, we recognized ourselves in Hank.

One of the best ones is _I Got a D in Salami_, the third one.
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7 of 7 people found the following review helpful A Kid's Review on November 26, 2005
Format: Paperback
It's an awesome book. I think everyone should read it. I liked how Hank gets into trouble. I like Hanks ideas. Hank is a very smart person.
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