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Paul Bunyan and Babe the Blue Ox: The Great Pancake Adventure Hardcover – October 1, 2012


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

K-Gr 2-Paul Bunyan was "a very big boy, born in a very small town on the banks of the St. Lawrence River." He and his blue ox, Babe, have trouble concentrating on anything but Mom's pancakes. She spends so much time making them that she can't tend her fields, and Paul and Babe's attempts to help out only end in squashed vegetables. So they decide to "follow their stomachs and find their pancake fortune out in the great big world." They meet Brimstone Bill, who keeps them in pancakes while they help him log the land. Along the way, of course, they manage to create the Rocky Mountains and the Grand Canyon. When they start to feel sick from eating too many pancakes, they head home to Mom, who feeds them good food while they help her grow "Bunyan-sized veggies." Luckhurst's gouache-on-paper artwork is bright and bold, and the text works well as a storytime read-aloud. As one would expect, the author takes the exaggerated and hyperbolic aspects of this tale and uses them to great effect. However, the book's page design is busy with unnecessary emphasis on sections of text, and this detracts from the depiction of Paul and Babe's scale and size; it can also make the text difficult to read, especially where it gets integrated into the art. While this tale might work as a fresh approach to promoting balanced diets, Steven Kellogg's Paul Bunyan (HarperCollins, 1985) remains the gold standard for introducing this larger-than-life character.-Laura Lutz, Pratt Institute, New York Cityα(c) Copyright 2011. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.

From Booklist

Many kids know American hero Paul Bunyan and his famous blue ox, but this picture book reveals a little-known fact about both of them: they were pancake lovers. Using his signature style of meshing art and text, Luckhurst introduces Paul and Babe the Blue Ox, living on the banks of the St. Lawrence River. While their town is abundant in giant fruits and veggies, Paul and Babe opt for pancakes at each meal (“green things are for the rabbits”), much to Paul’s mom’s dismay. Soon the book moves into tall-tale territory, as Paul and Babe leave home to seek their “Pancake Fortune,” and end up using their mouths to save Syrup River from a pancake spill. From there, they aid in the creation of both the Rocky Mountains and the Grand Canyon (yes, you-know-what are involved). The cartoonlike, folksy gouache-and-paper illustrations are fitting for the larger-than-life story, and the hand-lettered typeface adds extra oomph. An author’s note reveals that Paul and Babe’s penchant for pancakes is well documented. A batter-thin premise, but yummy nonetheless. Grades K-3. --Ann Kelley
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 5 - 7 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Lexile Measure: 780L (What's this?)
  • Hardcover: 48 pages
  • Publisher: Harry N. Abrams (October 1, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1419704206
  • ISBN-13: 978-1419704208
  • Product Dimensions: 8.5 x 0.5 x 12 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (9 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #793,490 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Margaret C. VINE VOICE on November 28, 2012
Format: Hardcover
Fun is definitely a good description for this book. The color choices and illustrations are whimsical and give a neat introduction to a classic folktale. While in my mind I do not really remember much about Paul Bunyan and his blue ox known as Babe I think that this book will be a great introduction for my girls and because of it's fun and vivid personality off the page will stick with them and any other young readers as well.

I love the illustrated words and the font chosen throughout the book. It's whimsical and as I'm also teaching my oldest daughter to read, she loves pointing out the "fun" letters.

*Thanks to Abrams for providing a copy for review.*
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Joshua Smith on September 11, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
PANCAKES! ...and vegetables
(and a giant lumberjack-kid with a giant blue ox, too)

A modern Paul Bunyan story with pancake-y twists that make kids laugh.
It also makes grown-ups laugh.
The art is awesome with beautiful colors, original painterly illustrations and unique typography.
There are funny, hidden details like Paul cramming himself into a tiny schoolhouse ("My Ox ate my homework!")

Random things happen like Paul's words get frozen in mid-air. The Rocky Mountains are created from pancakes. The Grand Canyon gets dug-out by a runaway ox...
Paul & Babe forever!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Liz on January 22, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I love this book! I bought it for the children in my family ages 2 to 7 and it was a hit across the board! Even my nana couldn't put it down. The story is a great lesson playfully told and the illustrations are artful and imaginative with a style all their own. The custom font definitely lends itself to inspired read alongs and makes a great new baby gift. Highly recommend this one!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By amyr on January 9, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Bought this for my niece and gifted with pancake mix. She loved it :-)
Was the perfect gift from Minnesota!
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By JohnnyTorpedo on January 4, 2013
Format: Hardcover
The Great Pancake Adventure is a great new tale on a couple of classic characters. With phenomenal illustrations throughout the book, it's easy to capture the attention of children at any age and makes for an interesting read.
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