Title: Little Larry Goes to School
Author(s): Gerry Ellis, Mary Rand Hess
Photographer: Gerry Ellis
Release Date: February 26th, 2019
Source: I received a copy of this book from the publicist for review consideration.
Rating: 4 out of 5
Little Larry Goes to School
A young, orphaned chimpanzee must start at a new school, where he will learn how to climb and build his confidence. Stunning photographs from award-winning photographer Gerry Ellis are sure to captivate young readers and raise awareness about chimps and the threats they face.
Little Larry is an orphaned chimpanzee who doesn’t know much about being a chimp. He has to go to his first day at the forest school to learn what chimp life is all about. Nestled in a primate sanctuary in Cameroon, Little Larry and his group of chimp friends go to the school each day to learn how to play, communicate, and climb like they would if they were chimps in the wild. The only trouble is, Little Larry doesn’t want to learn how to climb. He’s perfectly happy on the ground. Will the sanctuary keepers and other chimpanzees be able to teach Little Larry how to climb so he can graduate from forest school?
This sweet story, with its beautiful photographs, explores the challenges of going to school, learning, and gaining confidence in yourself. This is a perfect read-aloud tale for children reluctant to try new things, preparing to enter kindergarten, or starting preschool for the very first time.
Little Larry Goes to School Review
If I were to rate this book based solely on the adorableness of the pictures, it would get a five out of five without even having to think about it. I “aww’ed” so many times reading this that it was kind of ridiculous. So did my ten-year-old. Gerry Ellis is a talented photographer and you can tell he loves his subject matter in Little Larry Goes to School.
Even though it’s not one of those things I thought about (other than to appreciate the pretty colors), I liked that the visual themes in this book are inspired by the area around where Little Larry lives as the authors noted in the back. It is a very well-laid out book with bright colors to accompany the cute photos and clear, easy-to-read text.
As is clearly stated on the cover and first page this is a book all about overcoming your fears and learning to be brave. It is also billed as an “attending school for the first time” book and has a comforting message about finding friends and the fun that you can have. I don’t think that I would necessarily tag it as a “starting school” book though. I would stick with the talking about being brave.
In my opinion it’s the perfect length. The vocabulary is spot on. And (as I’m going to mention for the umpteenth time) the pictures are adorable. This is an easy pick for any library, whether it be personal or public.