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The Adventures of Beekle: The Unimaginary Friend
Contributor(s): Santat, Dan

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ISBN: 0316199982     ISBN-13: 9780316199988
Publisher: Little Brown & Co
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Binding Type: School And Library - See All Available Formats & Editions
Published: April 2014

Annotation: An imaginary friend waits a long time to be imagined by a child and given a special name, and finally does the unimaginable--he sets out on a quest to find his perfect match in the real world.
Additional Information
Library of Congress Subjects:
Imaginary playmates; Fiction.
Friendship; Fiction.
BISAC Categories:
- Juvenile Fiction | Social Issues | Friendship
- Juvenile Fiction | Imagination & Play
- Juvenile Fiction | Action & Adventure
Dewey: [E]
LCCN: 2013017700
Lexile Measure: 480
Academic/Grade Level: Kindergarten, Ages 5-6
Book type: Easy Fiction
Physical Information: 11.25" H x 8.50" W x 1.00" (1.06 lbs) 40 pages
Accelerated Reader Info
Quiz #: 165778
Reading Level: 2.3   Interest Level: Lower Grades   Point Value: 0.5
Scholastic Reading Counts Info
Quiz #: Q63966
Reading Level: 1.6   Interest Level: Grades K-2   Point Value: 1.0
Descriptions, Reviews, Etc.

Reviewed by Horn Book Guide Reviews (Horn Book Guide Reviews 2014 Fall)
Imaginary friend Beekle waits and waits for a child to think him into existence. When it doesn't happen, Beekle sails off to the real world--a city full of boring adults--to find her. Santat's bright digital illustrations capture the vivid land of imagination, the drab adult world, and the giggle-inducing expressions on marshmallow-like Beekle's pudgy white face.

Reviewed by Publishers Weekly Reviews (PW Reviews 2014 January #4)

On an island of imaginary friends waiting "to be picked by a child and given a special name," one friend—he's adorably pudgy, and wears a paper crown—resolves to wait no longer. He sets sail in a small boat, but the sea serpents and whales he encounters are not nearly as daunting as the real world, which is gray and pedestrian: "No kids were eating cake. No one stopped to hear the music." At last, his human appears: she's a geeky, mop-headed girl who likes to draw. A sweet sequence shows the two shifting and blushing next to each other; she turns to him with his new name: "Beekle." He's overjoyed. Santat (Crankenstein), a versatile and talented illustrator, ranges wide, drawing underwater ocean scenes, grim cityscapes, and appealing alien creatures. The third-person retelling weighs the story down somewhat—there's no conversation—and the pace drags as Beekle's search has more obstacles than it needs to. Affirming thoughts abound ("thinking about his friend gave him the courage to journey on"), but fans may miss the cracked humor of Santat's more irreverent work. Ages 3–6. Agent: Jodi Reamer, Writers House. (Apr.)

[Page ]. Copyright 2014 PWxyz LLC

Reviewed by School Library Journal Reviews (SLJ Reviews 2014 April)

PreS-Gr 2—How long would you wait and how far a journey would you make to find your truest friend? Born on an island for imaginary friends, Beekle waits to be "imagined by a real child." He waits and he waits, but his turn never comes. Filled with impetuous courage, Beekle does the unimaginable and heads out across deep waters until he reaches the real world. He finds that life there is so harried that no one notices him. Eventually, as he waits at the top of a star-leafed tree, a small girl with a friendly face calls out to him with a picture in her hand. They learn to be friends, share adventures and snacks, joke, "and together they did the unimaginable." Santat's attention to detail in the mixed-media illustrations shares a child's eye for laughter and movement on full-bleed spreads with strategically placed text. Gazes of wonderment, broad smiles, and changes in perspective ensure an easy transition from page to page. Beekle's round white visage and taped orange paper crown are immediately identifiable in each scene, a sharp contrast to his surroundings against variations of dark neutrals on a city street or the brightly colored dragons of a child's imagination. Like Beekle's new friend, there's something here that feels just right as an "unimaginary" friendship creates a joyous, recognizable bond. A terrific addition to any library.—Mary Elam, Learning Media Services, Plano ISD, TX

[Page 134]. (c) Copyright 2014. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.
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