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Mikis and the Donkey



by
Bibi Dumon Tak
illustrated by
Philip Hopman

Edition
Hardcover edition
Publisher
Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Co
Imprint
Eerdmans
ISBN
9780802854308

Awards and Honors
New York Public Library, 100 Titles for Reading and Sharing 2014, Stories for Younger Readers
2015 Mildred L. Batcheleder Award Winner
ALA Notable Books for Children 2015, Middle Readers; Capitol Choices 2015
POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
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Mikis's grandfather's new donkey is a working donkey, not a pet. Still, Mikis gets to name the donkey—and soon becomes known around the village as "the donkey boy." Afterword. Black-and-white illustrations.

POTENTIALLY SENSITIVE AREAS
None

Details

Format

Print

Page Count

89

Trim Size

5 1/3" x 8 1/2"

Dewey

F

AR

4.2: points 2

Lexile

640L

Genre

Fiction

Scholastic Reading Counts

5

JLG Release

Apr 2015

Book Genres


Topics

Donkeys. Grandfathers and grandsons. Family life. Corfu Island. Greece. Friendship.

Standard MARC Records

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Cover Art

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Praise & Reviews

Starred or favorable reviews have been received from these periodicals:

Bulletin of the Center for Children’s Books, Booklist, The Horn Book Magazine, The Horn Book Guide^, Kirkus Reviews

School Library Journal

Mikis is a boy who lives a quiet existence in a small town on a Greek isle with his family. His grandfather meets him after school and tells him there is a surprise waiting for him at home; the surprise is a donkey that Mikis is allowed to name. After much consultation with the donkey, it is decided by Mikis that Tsaki is the perfect name for her. Mikis’s friends and family are greatly amused by the friendship that the boy and animal develop; a friendship that takes them on adventures around the isle—to the doctor, to a pasture to make friends with another donkey, building a new stable, and one big surprise at the end. This a sweet story about a loving child and his donkey. There is no high adventure, fast-paced drama, or laugh-out-loud comedy, but readers who enjoy a gentle tale will appreciate the beauty of this quiet story. Included throughout are black-and-white pencil sketches of the duo’s adventures.—Lisa Nabel, Dayton Metro Library, OH

Horn Book

Setting the stage on the island of Corfu, Hopman’s atmospheric opening illustrations pan in from aerial view to village to Mikis’s grandpa under a sycamore tree with his cronies. Grandpa has just gotten a donkey to haul wood—“they don’t guzzle gas, and they usually start the first time.” Soon Mikis is making friends with Tsaki and becoming the animal’s advocate. Concerned about the chafing caused by heavy loads, the boy seeks medical attention for Tsaki (from an MD, to general amusement); he also arranges a visit with another donkey in case Tsaki is lonely. This is a huge success; as classmate Elena discreetly observes, the two donkeys “were getting along really well back there . . . really, really well.” Fortunately, the old man is kind as well as gruff; though “Mikis had to give his grandpa donkey lessons,” he eventually builds Tsaki a cleaner, airier stable with Mikis’s help. The Dutch creators of Soldier Bear (rev. 11/11) bring a lovely simplicity to this affecting picture of a close-knit Greek community where a teacher’s boyfriend can give her class motorbike rides to general contentment. The generous number of loosely drawn illustrations capture windswept landscapes, village life, and human character and diversity with equal aplomb. Visually inviting and easily read, this would also make a fine read-aloud for younger children. joanna rudge long

Praise & Reviews

School Library Journal

Mikis is a boy who lives a quiet existence in a small town on a Greek isle with his family. His grandfather meets him after school and tells him there is a surprise waiting for him at home; the surprise is a donkey that Mikis is allowed to name. After much consultation with the donkey, it is decided by Mikis that Tsaki is the perfect name for her. Mikis’s friends and family are greatly amused by the friendship that the boy and animal develop; a friendship that takes them on adventures around the isle—to the doctor, to a pasture to make friends with another donkey, building a new stable, and one big surprise at the end. This a sweet story about a loving child and his donkey. There is no high adventure, fast-paced drama, or laugh-out-loud comedy, but readers who enjoy a gentle tale will appreciate the beauty of this quiet story. Included throughout are black-and-white pencil sketches of the duo’s adventures.—Lisa Nabel, Dayton Metro Library, OH

Horn Book

Setting the stage on the island of Corfu, Hopman’s atmospheric opening illustrations pan in from aerial view to village to Mikis’s grandpa under a sycamore tree with his cronies. Grandpa has just gotten a donkey to haul wood—“they don’t guzzle gas, and they usually start the first time.” Soon Mikis is making friends with Tsaki and becoming the animal’s advocate. Concerned about the chafing caused by heavy loads, the boy seeks medical attention for Tsaki (from an MD, to general amusement); he also arranges a visit with another donkey in case Tsaki is lonely. This is a huge success; as classmate Elena discreetly observes, the two donkeys “were getting along really well back there . . . really, really well.” Fortunately, the old man is kind as well as gruff; though “Mikis had to give his grandpa donkey lessons,” he eventually builds Tsaki a cleaner, airier stable with Mikis’s help. The Dutch creators of Soldier Bear (rev. 11/11) bring a lovely simplicity to this affecting picture of a close-knit Greek community where a teacher’s boyfriend can give her class motorbike rides to general contentment. The generous number of loosely drawn illustrations capture windswept landscapes, village life, and human character and diversity with equal aplomb. Visually inviting and easily read, this would also make a fine read-aloud for younger children. joanna rudge long

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