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Skippyjon Jones, Lost in Spice Hardcover – September 22, 2009

91 customer reviews
Book 5 of 8 in the Skippyjon Jones Series

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Editorial Reviews


"[A]n out-of-this-world adventure...Skippyjon's fans will not be disappointed with his latest adventure." --School Library Journal

About the Author

Best known for her Skippyjon Jones series, Judy Schachner has illustrated many of her own stories, including the much-loved Grannyman and its companion book, Bits & Pieces. She lives in Swarthmore, Pennsylvania.

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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 - 5 years
  • Lexile Measure: 610L (What's this?)
  • Series: Skippyjon Jones
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Dutton Books for Young Readers; 1 Rei/Com edition (September 22, 2009)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0525479651
  • ISBN-13: 978-0525479659
  • Product Dimensions: 10.8 x 0.5 x 9.2 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 14.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (91 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,954 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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More About the Author

Judith Byron Schachner has been illustrating and writing children's books since 1992 and has given numerous presentations in schools and libraries. Her workshops are designed to be warm and personal with a special regard for the less than stellar student.
"Kids love to review my rotten report cards and laugh out loud at a slide show involving 4 cats and a funeral. Teachers love the 'Seed Box' filled to the brim with a magical collection of 'Junk' to inspire the writer in all of us. Everyone loves to watch 'Don Juan Skippito Bumblito the Great Sword Fighter' come to life with pencil and paper. By the end of the day we all believe that the stories in our own lives are worth writing about."
Judith Byron Schachner grew up outside of Boston in the 1950's. Her early years were not easy: "Growing up we didn't have much money. My mother was very ill, and to make matters worse, I was extremely shy. All my teachers complained that 'Judith needs to speak up in class, Judith needs to improve in arithmetic, and Judith needs to finish her work on time.' But no one complained about my artwork. On paper I drew myself a world where mothers were healthy and teachers were kind. My life was perfection in pencil."
Judith graduated from the Massachusetts College of Art in 1973 with a BFA in illustration and went straight into the "greeting card factories, which included a stint at Hallmark. For five years I designed cute cards, sad cards, funny cards, and wedding cards. I was not having fun; in fact I never wanted to pick up a paintbrush again."
Married life changed many things for Judith. One clear advantage for her was that "for the first time in many years I could step off the 9 to 5 treadmill and devote all my energy to creating a portfolio of children's book art. That was until two little baby girls were born. Then motherhood became my favorite new job. Over the years I read hundreds of books to my daughters. Inspired by the art and words I was moved once again to finish my portfolio and take it on the road to New York. Around the same time I met Donna Jo Napoli who convinced Dutton Children's Books to let me illustrate her novel, The Prince of the Pond," published in 1992.
In 1995 Judith wrote and illustrated her first picture book, Willy and May, and has turned out a number of projects since then. "The wonderful thing about my job is that one day I can be writing about history, as I did in Mr. Emerson's Cook. The next day I'm drawing a wacky old woman for I Know An Old Lady Who Swallowed a Pie. Or I can bring to life a beloved pet cat in my book The Grannyman. I live in a constant state of 3rd grade bliss - making up stories and drawing pictures. Isn't that what we all did as children?"
Several years ago the great author Lloyd Alexander stood in Judith's back yard admiring her daughters' Viking ship (as Judith puts it, that's another story). Working with Lloyd Alexander has been a dream come true for Judith: "Never in my wildest fantasies did I ever think that my art would inhabit his world of words."

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

29 of 32 people found the following review helpful By Stanley Cup VINE VOICE on September 25, 2009
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Holy hot tamales, is this book fun! In the latest installment of Skippyjon Jones, our fearless kitty boy decides he is going to travel to Mars, because it is the "red" planet, and red is his favorite color. Like all adventures before this one, he heads to his room, into his closet (with Mama June Bug's bottle of red spice), and he's off in his imagination to the planet Mars. His old friends are waiting there for him, but a new surprise is too. Meet Martian-ito Skippito--Skippy's martian counterpart. Just like his Earthly counterpart, Martian-ito Skippito also has ears too big for his head, his head is too big for his body, and he has the same affinity for using the word "dude". It's Skippyjon's twin and Skippyjon couldn't be happier! The only differences between the two is that Martian-ito Skippito is red, and has only one eye. He is appropriately named "Uno Ojo". Our favorite Kitty Boy thinks he has found his karmic match until a battle for Skippy's favorite sock monkey ensues with Uno Ojo. Skippyjon ends up catapulting himself back to Earth where Mama June Bug is waiting to serve him his dinner, a delectable dish his sister Jilly Boo calls Tuna Poodle casserole.

I love all of Judy Schachner's books in the Skippyjon series, and this one may be her best yet. She still writes phonetically to get the reader to use the voice inflection intended for the Spanish accent. It it seems she may have toned down that part of her signature trademark just a bit this time around, but not in a bad way. She has also added more "authentic" Spanish words to the story, so your child has a chance to learn some new words as the story progresses. Additionally, the book comes with a CD attached to the back cover that makes it fun to use for read-alongs in the car.
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16 of 17 people found the following review helpful By M. Fasulo on September 23, 2009
Format: Hardcover
Skippyjon has once again had an amazing adventure in his closet. My daughter already has several parts memorized. If you do not yet know Skippyjon I would say this is a good place to start. It has all the imagination of the other books and keeps with the theme of stuff kids would like to do, (go into space, travel back to mummy time, meet dinosaurs.) Skippyjon I love you.
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10 of 11 people found the following review helpful By S. Finch on October 9, 2009
Format: Hardcover
We are big fans of this series, but this one tops them all! We are having so much fun reading this book. We've read it three times and only brought it home a couple of hours ago. We are still laughing at the lines. I'm pleased to say our 8 year-old even got the "Major Tom" line.

There's more Splanglish/Spanish silliness than any of the others. There are also a few treats that parents will find - little sub reference nuggets from the past. Thank you, Judy Schachner. We enjoy her books when children spend the night.
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6 of 7 people found the following review helpful By Jemmie on June 11, 2011
Format: Hardcover
We first encountered Skipito at a fellow Spanish teacher's house. She reads it to her child and insisted upon reading it to me and my children. I was blown away! I could not believe that an entire series of books like this existed! Skippyjon Jones is a Siamese kitty who thinks he is actually a Chihuahua named Skipito! If that's not adorable enough, his closet is a magical place where he and the banditos encounter all sorts of fun adventures. This particular book focuses on his adventure in which he gets lost in.... SPICE! Not space, oh no! Spice! Ha! I am afraid that some of the parents complaining about the book and series are those who take reading with their kiddos far too *seriously*. Alliteration and phonetics and silly rhymes are the focus here, and they are what make the naughty little gatito Skipito and his misadventures so much fun! It's like singing the name game, or playing down by the bank, etc. They are nonsensical fun things that also help children LEARN. As for the book being non-PC, we were not offended at all. Culturally, Skippyjon Jones would technically be considered Asian. But his cultural identity crisis causes him to make believe he is Mexican/TexMex/Chicano. The author does an excellent job with the word use as well, in my opinion. I think the purpose and point is to MAKE the parent's reading sound silly and exagerrated! The kids are supposed to be laughing, that's the point people! If you are reading Lost in Spice or any of the other Skipitio books and you and your little ones aren't dying of laughter and enjoying the time you're spending with one another... well folks, that's YOUR fault, not the author's. :)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Margaret E. Viney on July 8, 2011
Format: Hardcover
My sister-in-law bought this book for my daughter last year and she just loves it. She spent three weeks running around saying, "Weeked Red Chi Waa Waa". We have purchased four more books from this series, because this book is just so much fun. This is a book that is meant to be read to children and it does help to listen to the stories on the CDs provided with many of the books, so that you can get the tunes to the songs:-)
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By J. Felske on May 17, 2011
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Our 4 year old discovered Skippy Jon Jones at preschool this year and fell in love with him. We borrowed all of the books from the library and discovered the cd's that came with them. The cd's are essential if you have never read SJJ otherwise reading the books may leave you wondering "what the heck is this???". It is goofiness and very catchy rhyming that any kid should love.
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