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Listen to My Trumpet! (An Elephant and Piggie Book) Hardcover – February 7, 2012

4.9 out of 5 stars 61 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

Review

This seventeenth entry in the indefatigable Elephant & Piggie series finds gray elephant and pink piglet once again cavorting before Willems' traditional big white backdrops. Piggie's excited about her new acquisition, a trumpet, which she makes a big to-do about before playing it for Gerald. The sounds she creates are rather abrasive: "Bluuuurrrk!" "Bl-ap!" "Vr-ip!" Yet she continues to honk and squawk while Gerald looks increasingly worried. How is he going to tell his friend that her music is no good? He tries to pad his evaluation with some faint praise ("You, uh, hold your trumpet very well"), but eventually he lays out the truth. Thankfully, Piggie is not mad. Gerald has merely misunderstood: she wasn't trying to make music, she was trying to "speak Elephant." This may be one of the lesser entries in the series, but the bar is so high that this remains irrepressibly fun. And who can resist that double-page spread in the middle filled with Piggie's playing? "Blap-zap-blap-BLONK!," indeed. - Daniel Kraus Booklist"

PreS-Gr 2 Gerald and Piggie are back in another easy reader that manages to touch on the complex issues of communication, honesty among friends, and shared experiences. Piggie is in proud possession of a loud, shiny trumpet, which she can't wait to play for Gerald. As he sits and listens, she proceeds to struggle her way through a demonstration, which sounds less like music and more like Gerald's "Aunt Molly with a cold." But as painful as it is for Gerald to listen to Piggie play, he knows that telling her how bad she is will be even more torturous. His anguish is clearly visible but tell her he must, because that's what friends are for. Willems squeezes so much information and emotion out of the barest of illustrations: Gerald sticking his tongue out in concentration as he maneuvers his bulk onto the tiny stool Piggie has provided for him reminds readers of what a physically odd couple they are; Piggie reverently embracing her trumpet before proceeding to blast the heck out of it speaks to her true motivation for getting it in the first place, as is revealed in the surprisingly sweet ending. This winning pair continues to delight and charm readers with a wisdom that seems hard won by adults, but is second nature to children. Kara Schaff Dean, Walpole Public Library, MA SLJ"

Fans of the obstreperous Piggie will know that she certainly doesn't need an instrument to trumpet her affections for the less demonstrative Gerald, but grab one she does, commanding the elephant to sit on a comically diminutive three-legged stool while she attempts to coax notes out of her shiny new trumpet. The bleats become an obnoxious but subtly ingenious phonics lesson, as her instrument emits variations of consonant blends that combine with easily pronounceable endings to form nonsense words that lack meaning but nonetheless show how words work. Gerald's attempts to be supportive without hurting his friend's feelings teach an important emotional lesson as well, as he flounders to be encouraging and honest at the same time; he lauds Piggie's efforts as enthusiastic but has to acknowledge that they are not musically pleasing. The punchline strikes a beautiful note even if Piggie doesn't, as Willems manages yet again to pull off the perfect dual audience move: Gerald's adult-like misunderstanding of Piggie's intentions and the revelation of Piggie's actual motive will ring true to youngsters and will elicit surprised and delighted eeps from older reading partners at the unaffected sweetness of childlike empathy and friendship. The consistency of the color-coded sound bubbles and the clear depiction of emotional states, conveyed through comic exaggeration of the deceptively simple figure drawings, will help even the newest readers track the narrative line as they practice their emergent literacy skills. KC BCCB"

About the Author

Mo Willems (www.pigeonpresents.com), a number one New York Times best-selling author and illustrator, has been awarded a Caldecott Honor on three occasions (for Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus!, Knuffle Bunny: A Cautionary Tale, and Knuffle Bunny Too: A Case of Mistaken Identity). Don't Let the Pigeon Drive the Bus! was also an inaugural inductee into the Indies Choice Picture Book Hall of Fame. And his celebrated Elephant & Piggie early reader series has been awarded the Theodor Seuss Geisel Medal on two occasions (for There Is a Bird on Your Head! and Are You Ready to Play Outside?) as well as an Honor (for We Are in a Book!). Other favorites include Naked Mole Rat Gets Dressed and City Dog, Country Frog, illustrated by Jon J Muth.

Mo began his career on Sesame Street, where he garnered six Emmy Awards. He lives with his family in Massachusetts.
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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; Elephant & Piggie Books edition (February 7, 2012)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 1423154045
  • ISBN-13: 978-1423154044
  • Product Dimensions: 6.8 x 0.5 x 9.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (61 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #17,340 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This installment in the Mo Willems "Piggie and Elephant" franchise, "Listen to My Trumpet", has Piggie wowing Gerald with her new trumpet. Gerald listens. Gerald winces. Sadly, she's no Satchmo. Gerald tries to think of nice things to say that will not hurt Piggies feelings:

1. it's "shiny"
2. it's "loud"
3. Piggie "holds it well"

But of course much as she likes hearing that stuff -- that is not enough for Piggie. She wants more -- she wants to know what he REALLY thinks! And Gerald, being a great friend, conscientiously decides he should tell her the truth -- albeit as gently as possible.

It has a fun twist at the end, and once again shows children though the charming relationship between these two best friends, exactly what being a true friend is all about -- honesty, love, trust, compassion and concern.
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Format: Hardcover
Gerald the elephant's eyes widened as Piggy came running at him, calling his name and offering him a stool. "Sit! Sit! Sit!" Piggy was all excited and ran off as soon as Gerald was sitting on that teeny weeny stool. She quickly came back with a trumpet in hand, announced her find, and snuggled up to Gerald and asked if he wanted to hear her play. Of course he did. After all, that's what friends are for. Piggy smiled as she hugged her trumpet and got ready to play.

Piggy blew and he blew and she blew until she got red in the face. Gerald was taken aback and then all of a sudden "Bluuuurrk!" It was a horrible sound that knocked poor Gerald right off the stool. It was so bad that even his nose crinkled up in shock. Piggy exclaimed, "Wait. That was not right." No, it was not right, it was awful. Piggy peered into her trumpet and "Bl-ap! Fr-ip! Br-ip! Vr-ip!" tried again. Things went from bad to worse and then Piggy wanted to know what Gerald thought of her playing. What would happen if he told her the truth? Would they still be friends?

Gerald and Piggy's friendship is tested by some pretty bad trumpet playing. This is yet another inimitable Mo Willems book about this charming duo. Everyone from the preschooler to the adult can't help but fall in love with them. Nonreader and emergent readers will enjoy "reading" along with an adult. Youngsters everywhere will love Piggy's hilarious antics and her less than stellar musical talents. The artwork is bold and expressive. I particularly how Willems caught every nuance on Gerald's face. Can he really face the music? You'll just have to add this one to your list and find out?
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I have read this with several of my art classes and the kids LOVED the book. They loved the noises Piggy makes with her trumpet; they loved hearing me try to imitate the sounds Piggy made! Many of my most reluctant readers could not get enough of it and wanted to know if the school library had this one. Wow! A book that makes kids WANT to read! Not bad!
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My kindergarten students LOVE these books -- you can't go wrong. LOTS of character development to talk about, fun inferences at which to stab -- what's not to like? My students CHEER when I pull one of these books out. Mo Willems is genius. Period.
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By K.J. on February 16, 2013
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book was OK but not as funny as some of the other Mo Willems books that I've read to my students. Gerald's expressions while Piggie tooted the trumpet were funny as were his attempts to be tactful when Piggie asked for his opinion of her playing. However, the dialogue was pretty thin--mostly noises, which got a bit old after a while. Not one of my favorites.
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My son and I cannot get enough of elephant and piggie! I love to read to my kids because they love it. Deep down inside I loathe a lot of children's books, not these. They are entertaining and enjoyable day after day.
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My kids _LOVE_ these books. Mo manages to continue to captivate and engage young readers with a standard repeating (not repetitive) format for Elephant and Piggie. A great selection of real words and funny sounds allow even little speakers to engage with active story time reading.
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Love Elephant and Piggie books and this one is no different. There is often an unexpected twist in the books, which is delightful. I like how the talk bubbles are in different colors so kids learn who is speaking what parts. I like how text is used to teach reading without a mono tone of voice. My kids (and the grown ups!) love them.
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