The story is compelling, and the main character Jack is well-written and believable. From the first page of Jennifer Jacobson's middle grades book, I found myself emotionally connected to this brave and loyal boy. I simultaneously wanted to save him and cheered his efforts to save himself.
Small as an Elephant is the story of Jack, a young boy who wakes up on the first morning of a camping trip and realizes his mother is gone. Although worried and upset, Jack knows what has happened. His mom has left. Again.
Alone in a strange state, Jack must find her. But how does a penniless, eleven year old boy go about finding his bipolar mother?
Some of the things I loved about Small as an Elephant:
- Jack's mother is not a character. She only appears in Jack's thoughts and memories. Her absence throughout the book makes Jack's predicament all the more heart-breaking and real.
- Jack loves elephants. His love for the animals and facts about elephants are important elements in the story.
- Jack's journey is believable. His efforts to find his mom, feed himself, travel, and not get caught are plausible actions for a resourceful young boy.
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