Parent reviews for The Circus Ship

Common Sense says

Odd shipwreck tale comes on a little strong.
Based on our expert review

Parents say

age 3+
Based on 9 reviews

Kids say

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Parent Written byMelissa T. March 20, 2019

Not violent at all!

My kids love Chris Van Dusen books and I love reading them aloud. They have a great rhythm to them. I disagree with the review calling this book too violent. The beginning of the books does not reference drowning at all. No, the animals are not saved by the circus owner, but they swim to shore. Also the child being in a fire is obviously illustrated to reference a ring of fire like you'd see the tigers jump through at the circus. My kids were not scared at all by this book. The message of the book is seeing the good in the animals and how the townsfolk go on to protect them.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Adult Written byLeannaNClark November 18, 2018

Where is the alligator?

I absolutely loved the book. It was so cute and my daughter's loved reading it with me. Our favorite part was finding the hidden animals when they were hiding from the evil owner. However it drove us crazy that we still to this day can't find the alligator. Lol

This title contains:

Positive role models
Parent Written byStephanie A. August 5, 2016

Five miles off the coast of Maine ...

My son is really sensitive to bullying and meanness but he loved this book. He could recite it from heart. The tempo of the story is great as is the artwork. He appreciated that the animals were given a second chance by the townspeople and that they worked together to save the animals from the over-the-top bully.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Parent of a 3-year-old Written byJoodee December 5, 2012

Very enjoyable for my 3 year old.

My sensitive 3 1/2 year old daughter loves it. The writing is fun and the illustrations are dynamic and interesting (especially the page where all the animals are hiding).
Parent Written byParintha August 2, 2012

The Circus Ship a Winner with Children!

This is a book that children want to hear over and over again! I am a library director in a small town and a grandmother of ten who is very discerning about what I read to children. This is a heartwarming tale of fifteen circus animals who are shipwrecked off the coast of Maine. They swim to an island and soon become friends with the inhabitants. The circus owner, who initially abandoned the animals in the shipwreck, wants them back to work for him and visits the island to find them. The islanders help the animals elude the circus owner, aptly named Mr. Paine. In an ingenious interactive picture, the animals are hiding in plain sight from Mr. Paine around the village. The children love looking for the animals and pointing them out. Although Mr. Paine is the villain of the story, his appearance in caricature and his bumbling Keystone Cop type behavior makes him non-threatening to children. Rollicking rhyme makes this a fun book to read and to hear and the illustrations are bold, colorful and detailed, with charming Victorian-era characters.
I don't agree with the review stating this book comes on too strong or is frightening to children. The proof is in the pudding. I've heard time and again from other librarians, both public and school, that this book is loved by children and many feel it is destined to become a children's classic. I've never heard anything but praise from my patrons about The Circus Ship.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Positive role models
Parent of a 2-year-old Written bykmaltby February 11, 2011

Wonderful Pictures easy to read outloud

My 2 year old loves this book. I bought the book as a recommendation from a employee at a book store. Even though my daughter does not understand the story, she loves looking at all the animals, which are very well illustrated. I can easily see this book growing with my child. The book is very easy to read out load and flows easily and the pictures are very vibrant. Highly suggest to anyone whose children loves animals

This title contains:

Educational Value
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Parent of a 3-year-old Written byslyons September 18, 2010

Amazing artwork, great rhyming story.

The reviewer listed is way off. I've read hundreds of books to my children, and the artwork and rhyming story make it among the best -- truly. This book will be a classic.

This title contains:

Positive Messages
Parent of a 3, 5, and 6-year-old Written byWaltzing Matilda October 30, 2009
The story is based loosely on an actual event in Maine. It's a good read by a GREAT illustrator. Also check out Chris VanDusen's Mr. Magee books and If I Built a Car. The guy is 1950s-vintage GREAT.

This title contains:

Educational Value
Positive Messages
Parent of a 12 and 15-year-old Written byjpcullen October 2, 2009
My first graders absolutely loved this book when the librarian read it to us the other day. We are big Chris VanD fans and this book had all the things we love- lots of action, great rhythm and rhyme, and bright, bold illustrations. It is now a favorite in our class library, even among those who usually never deign to read anything but chapter books.