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Comment: exlibrary hardcover book no dust jacket, usual library marks and stickers, has some reader wear . Small bumps to corners minor water damage , still a good readable copy. Curled corners on cover
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I Will Surprise My Friend! (An Elephant and Piggie Book) Hardcover – June 3, 2008


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Editorial Reviews

From School Library Journal

Starred Review. Kindergarten-Grade 2—In classic Willems style, the characters' expressions and body language carry both stories, with the deceptively simple line art saying far more than the slight, though whimsical, texts. When Gerald accidentally breaks Piggie's new toy, he is by turns ashamed, chagrined, and apologetic. Piggie is mad, sad, and finally embarrassed (a squirrel shows them that the "broken toy" is of the "break-and-snap" variety). The pals then decide that playing together is more fun than playing with a toy anyway. In the second title, the two watch a squirrel surprise a friend by jumping out from behind a rock. Mischievous Gerald and Piggie then plan together how to "surprise" one another in the same way. They sit behind opposite sides of a large stone and wait to be surprised. And wait. And wait. And worry. Savvy readers will know exactly what happens when each friend thinks that the other has left. These masterful mini-dramas will delight and amuse easy-reader and picture-book audiences, alike.—Kelly Roth, Bartow County Public Library, Cartersville, GA
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From Booklist

*Starred Review* Squirrel plays a big role in Elephant and Piggie’s next adventure, I Will Surprise My Friend. He surprises his friend by hiding behind a tiny rock and yelling, “Boo!” The squirrels have such fun that Elephant and Piggie decide to try it too, but alas, surprising each other, when both know a surprise is coming, isn’t that easy. As always in this series, the combination of simple text and mischievous art will satisfy beginning readers and leave them eager to polish their skills and move toward more challenging books. Grades K-2. --Ilene Cooper
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Product Details

  • Age Range: 4 - 8 years
  • Grade Level: Preschool - Kindergarten
  • Series: An Elephant and Piggie Book
  • Hardcover: 64 pages
  • Publisher: Disney-Hyperion; 1 edition (June 3, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423109627
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423109624
  • Product Dimensions: 7 x 0.4 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (59 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #18,626 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

13 of 13 people found the following review helpful By T. Jonker on July 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Scaring people is fun. There is really no getting around this fact. Kids know this better than anyone. Mo Willems knows that kids know this better than anyone. And now he's gone and written a book about it. Fitting right in with previous "Elephant & Piggie" titles, "I Will Surprise My Friend" provides a situation kids will relate to, presented with playfulness, wit, and an ace sense of humor.

The story begins when Gerald (the Elephant) and Piggie come upon a squirrel who is about to surprise his friend. They like the idea so much they decide to give it a try on on each other. They creep up to opposite sides of a big rock and wait to get startled. This setup is ripe for some silliness. Gerald and Piggie both start to wonder where the other one is. They look around the rock at the same time - no one there. They walk around the rock at the same time - nothing. When our heroes finally give up and head out to find each other, they finally get the shock they were hoping for.

The author's knack for getting inside the head of youngsters and seeing things from their perspective is on display here. From the way Gerald and Piggie immediately want to try something they see to how they end up waiting for the other one to scare them, beginning readers will identify with this title.

Willems continues to get his PHD in emotive minimalist illustration in "I Will Surprise My Friend". Each page brings expressions and gestures that announce the mood of each character as clear as day. Similar to other titles in this series, the story is told completely through dialog in the form of word balloons. This makes it a good choice for some good ol' individual reading. And kids will definitely want to read this one - be sure to have a couple copies on hand.
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5 of 5 people found the following review helpful By S. Kleinman-Dominguez on July 19, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
An emergent reader series that is not boring! It's funny, you can actually listen to it again and again and again, which if your child is learning how to read or a struggling reader you will:)

It is emergent/early reader, think level 1 with decodable words repeated and introduced perfectly. Enough to gain skill but not too much to bore. (Think Dick & Jane.......easy to decode but boring)

By the author of the "Don't let the pigeon...." & "Knuffle Bunny" series and "Leonardo the terrible Monster" Mo Willems is a Caldecott winner, former Sesame Street writer and a genius!

Buy them all & look forward to nighttime or anytime storytime. (I keep some of them in the car)
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful By PA Mom on June 25, 2008
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
My son (almost 3 1/2) started with "Today I Will Fly" a month ago which he LOVED. As soon as we finished reading this one I was instructed to immediately read it three more times that morning (and 2 more times that afternoon). He loves that he can retell the story based on the pictures, the expressions and the short phrases. This is definitely a favorite in our house, so much that my younger son ( 1 1/2) likes to "read" them too.
It is humor that my son "gets" and adults should enjoy too.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Pebbles-the-cat on November 6, 2012
Format: Hardcover
We *LOVE* Elephant & Piggie books in our family! So simple but convey so much emotion that kids of all ages can identify with. If you love to laugh, these books are for you. We've read every one of them, and not one is a disappointment! You just really can't go wrong with any one of these totally cute, funny books. The bonus? These books turned around a situation that was developing into a big negative and struggle.

In kindergarten, my son picked up reading with ease. By the end he was freakishly excellent at reading and testing four grades ahead of his own. Enter next in line, sister. In kindergarten, she is a regular kid and reading comes to her at the usual speed. This would be fine if she hadn't already been reading with brother super-reader, setting her expectations unreasonably high for herself. My kids and I have been reading before bed every night since they were born, and since becoming old enough, the three of us together, every night. My daughter was keenly aware of her brother's reading development as he had taken over the duties from me. As my daughter began to read, the requirement from school was for her to read at home. Her experience was quickly becoming a very negative one as she would struggle with every word, and her brother would become impatient and want to help, further frustrating her... and on it went every night. She was exhausted and frustrated by the end of 10min. I feared she would end up like me - never reading a book unless assigned in school, until her brother was born, because I read so slow and couldn't keep up with my own attn. span. I also recognized that the books for her reading level contained many words that were above her abilities, not real words (further confusing things) and frankly, above the reading level of the target audience.
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2 of 2 people found the following review helpful By Carrie Dunham-LaGree on November 3, 2009
Format: Hardcover
The Elephant and Piggie series consistently manages to delight young children and adults. Although I can't speak from experience, these are books I would not tire of reading to my children, yet they're simple enough to captivate and enchant children as young as two. I don't know how he does it, but I'm so glad he has the talent.

I Will Surprise My Friend! is hilarious. Elephant and Piggie are out for a walk and come across a squirrel hiding to surprise his friend. As both squirrels loved the surprise, they quickly decide to it again. Naturally, Elephant and Piggie decide it is a good idea to surprise each other too. The joy of Elephant and Piggie books, of course, is not necessarily the plot. Telling the story is never as entertaining as reading it. Willems displays a multitude of emotions with his simple drawings, and the chemistry between Elephant and Piggie is fantastic. If you haven't read the Elephant and Piggie books, plop down at a bookstore or library and read a few. I bet you'll find yourself laughing and trying to figure out what friends and family members have children of appropriate ages to give these books.
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I Will Surprise My Friend! (An Elephant and Piggie Book)
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