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Penguin Hardcover – June 12, 2007


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - 3
  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Candlewick (June 12, 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0763634042
  • ISBN-13: 978-0763634049
  • Product Dimensions: 0.4 x 8.6 x 10.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 13.6 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (13 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #1,157,506 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Booklist

Ben is disappointed that the penguin he receives as a present is mute. He tries everything from tickling it to entertaining it with a song and a dizzy dance, but Penguin doesn't speak. Ben fires Penguin into outer space, but he returns as silent as ever. Then he tries to feed Penguin to a passing lion, but the lion goes after Ben instead. Penguin saves the day and then recounts all of the preceding episodes in his own, pictorial language. The closing scene, in which Penguin responds to Ben's hug by uttering a heart-shaped message, warmly conveys that the adversaries have finally found common ground. Dunbar complements her short, straightforward text with equally spare illustrations, judiciously brightened with color, in which Ben, Penguin, and Lion (and little else) appear on completely white pages. This brief, brisk story will hold the attention of impatient children, while its messages about easing standoffs through communication and mutual respect bears repeated reading. Enos, Randall

Review

"The illustrations - some of the best in children's books - are gently animated but the words hold as much sway as they do in the books. Great fun for children who already know the stories or alternatively a way in for newcomers." THE Book Magazine" --This text refers to an out of print or unavailable edition of this title.

More About the Author

Polly Dunbar graduated from Brighton Art School in 1999 where she studied illustration. Polly still lives and works in Brighton. Author and illustrator of Penguin, Dog Blue and Flyaway Katie. Polly is the daughter of the distinguished author Joyce Dunbar who she collaborated with on the picture book Shoe Baby. She is the illustrator of My Dad's a Birdman and The boy who climbed into the Moon, both written by David Almond. Polly also illustrated Here's a Little Poem, an anthology of poems for very young children. Her best selling book Penguin won the Nestle Silver award 2007, The Book trust early Years award 2007, The Red house award 2008 and was shortlisted for the Kate Greenaway Medal. Polly is the author and illustrator of Tilly and Friends, a humorous and colourful series of six books following the escapades of a little girl and her animal friends who all live together in a little yellow house.
Polly is the co-founder of Long Nose puppets, an award winning puppet company, they have made successful adaptations of the books Shoe Baby, Fly Away Katie and Penguin. Long Nose Puppets are currently touring the UK.

Customer Reviews

4.6 out of 5 stars
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My almost 2 year old son loves this book and we read it day and night.
Nettie A. Owens
This is a wonderful book that will appeal not only to younger children who can't read, but to children who are just beginning to read.
tvtv3
Although minimal in words, the pictures were very expressive, and my daughter could follow along easily.
Happy customer

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

15 of 17 people found the following review helpful By Happy customer on June 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I read this to my 2.5 year old last night (recommended reading after a bath, in jammies, snuggling outside) and she loved it. Although minimal in words, the pictures were very expressive, and my daughter could follow along easily. By the second reading, she told ME the story. Unlike the recommendation of starting with 4 year olds, definitely a hit with toddlers as well... although she didn't care for the brief appearance of the lion.
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8 of 8 people found the following review helpful By Andrew Schonbek on March 14, 2009
Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
Penguin seems not to be able to talk.

This won't surprise parents and other adult readers since he's a present in a box wrapped in polka dot paper. Ben, the recipient, rips off the paper, opens the box, and the action gets underway.

"Hello Penguin" says Ben.

That's when the problems start.

Penguin, who looks like a fat tuxedoed bowling pin with undersized feet and an oversized beak, doesn't respond.

Oh yeah. He also has a tail. It looks to be about the right size.

Ben tries just about everything (including trying to feed Penguin to a passing lion) in the effort to elicit a response from his new friend.

Nothing works.

Finally, in sheer exasperation he shouts, "SAY SOMETHING!"

This is when things spin out of control.

Lion, who happens to be a shade of turquoise with a bright blue mane, is apparently startled by the loud noise and gobbles up Ben.

After this, Lion looks quite contented, but suddenly Penguin looks mad. He glares at Lion, and then, most unexpectedly, bites him on the nose, securing Ben's release.

This catharsis cures Penguin of his speech-impaired condition. He now waxes eloquent, in a rich and colorful pictorial language all his own.

Polly Dunbar has written a delightful and very satisfying book, clearly deserving of its status as 2007 Booktrust Early Years Awards Winner (Pre-School Category).
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11 of 13 people found the following review helpful By dkh on August 6, 2007
Format: Hardcover
We've purchased about 30 books in the past 6 months for our 2-year-old and this is definitely one of the better books we've read. The illustrations are good (not-too-cluttered) and the language is age-appropriate for the 2 to 4 year old range. The book has continued to make both me and my wife smile even after multiple readings to our child.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Mary Hynes-Berry on September 24, 2007
Format: Hardcover
Penguin is a delightful picture book that not only is likely to appeal to imaginative young children but also can shed some light for parents on the frustrations of early language development. Children whose language is still emerging can act the little boy in the story--or the penguin as they try to find the right words to say or to respond to someone else. One of the delights of the book is the way imaginative play is built right into the book as a toy lion turns ferocious and then is tamed again.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By tvtv3 TOP 500 REVIEWERVINE VOICE on October 4, 2010
Format: Paperback
In this delightful little tale from Polly Dunbar, a little boy named Ben receives a live penguin as a present. The boy is eager to become friends with the animal and have it talk. He tries everything to get the animal to speak, but the penguin doesn't say a word. Then a lion comes along and really makes the story interesting.

This is a wonderful book that will appeal not only to younger children who can't read, but to children who are just beginning to read. The book is very playful and imaginative with just the right word combination.

I love penguins and I loved this book and look forward to sharing it with children I know.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By momandteacherinbuckeyestate on April 17, 2009
Format: Paperback
My 4 year old is a penguin fanatic and this book fits the bill. It has a silly dry humor that she totally gets. I would recommend this one.
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2 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Nettie A. Owens on August 28, 2007
Format: Hardcover
My almost 2 year old son loves this book and we read it day and night. The repetitive nature of the story gives him lots of opportunities to join in the reading plus he is able to act out the way the main character, Ben, interacts with his new penguin. It is always a lot of fun.
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