A Silverback Gorilla is a GREAT Ape- a proud protector of his troop- a majestic creature. They belong in the wild- guarding the nests of their family- fathering their offspring- living with the natural world.
Ivan is a Silverback Gorilla who was stolen from his natural habitat to serve as an attraction in a mall. He was raised by humans but, although his memory is not as absolute as an elephants, he remembers the joy that he was taken from and the sorrows he has faced.
Ivan is also an artist. Give him any medium- mud, crayons, paint, magic markers- and he will draw his world for you.
Ivan has made the best of his captivity. He has true friends in a dog, elephant, and little girl.
It is only when he loses one of these friends that he begins to see his "domain" for what it really is- a cage.
Ivan has made a promise so nearly impossible that even a Silverback might not be able to keep it. But Ivan is more that just a Silverback. He is an artist.
Katherine Applegate has fictionalized the true account of an actual gorilla named Ivan, giving him a story to tell. Although this is a tale told from the perspective of animals- their "humanity" is just as valid as our own.
5 Stars for all ages
Review by Mrs. Sanborn
Jaime Sanborn's Book Reviews by Jaime Ann Sanborn, MLIS, SLMS is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-NoDerivatives 4.0 International License.
Based on a work at http://jfsanborn.blogspot.com.