Bound To Stay Bound

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 Mikis and the donkey
 Author: Dumon Tak, Bibi

 Publisher:  Eerdmans Books for Young Readers (2014)

 Classification: Fiction
 Physical Description: 93 p., ill., 22 cm.

 BTSB No: 870998 ISBN: 9780802854308
 Ages: 8-12 Grades: 3-7

 Donkeys -- Fiction
 Grandfathers -- Fiction
 Family life -- Greece -- Fiction
 Corfu Island (Greece) -- Fiction
 Greece -- Fiction

Price: $6.50

Mikis is thrilled when his grandfather buys a new donkey, but soon begins to worry that he is overworking the animal.

 Illustrator: Hopman, Philip
Accelerated Reader Information:
   Interest Level: LG
   Reading Level: 4.20
   Points: 2.0   Quiz: 169526
Reading Counts Information:
   Interest Level: 3-5
   Reading Level: 3.70
   Points: 5.0   Quiz: 64647

   Kirkus Reviews (08/01/14)
   School Library Journal (08/01/14)
   Booklist (10/01/14)
 The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books (02/15)
 The Hornbook (00/11/14)

Full Text Reviews:

School Library Journal - 08/01/2014 Gr 3–5—Mikis is a boy who lives a quiet existence in a small town on a Greek isle with his family. His grandfather meets him after school and tells him there is a surprise waiting for him at home; the surprise is a donkey that Mikis is allowed to name. After much consultation with the donkey, it is decided by Mikis that Tsaki is the perfect name for her. Mikis's friends and family are greatly amused by the friendship that the boy and animal develop; a friendship that takes them on adventures around the isle—to the doctor, to a pasture to make friends with another donkey, building a new stable, and one big surprise at the end. This a sweet story about a loving child and his donkey. There is no high adventure, fast-paced drama, or laugh-out-loud comedy, but readers who enjoy a gentle tale will appreciate the beauty of this quiet story. Included throughout are black-and-white pencil sketches of the duo's adventures.—Lisa Nabel, Dayton Metro Library, OH - Copyright 2014 Publishers Weekly, Library Journal and/or School Library Journal used with permission.

Booklist - 10/01/2014 Entrusted to name Grandpa’s new working donkey, Mikis consults the jenny in choosing the name Tsaki. Boy and donkey become inseparable, although Mikis worries that Grandpa is forcing her to haul loads that are too heavy. After a medical emergency (Tsaki develops bleeding sores from the baskets she carries), Mikis helps Tsaki convalesce, and they spend time exploring their village with Mikis’ friend Elena. Set on the Greek island of Corfu, this latest offering from the creators of the Batchelder winner Soldier Bear (2011) is a quiet story filled with endearing characters, believable situations, and a sense of the importance of caring for other creatures. Short chapters and frequent pencil drawings make the story accessible for beginning chapter-book readers. A side plot involving teacher Miss Chrysi (whose hair becomes a barometer of her love life—flat means she has worn a helmet riding to school on her boyfriend’s motorcycle and curly means they’ve had a fight) will amuse slightly older readers. - Copyright 2014 Booklist.

Bulletin for the Center... - 02/01/2015 When Mikis’ grandfather gets a donkey, young Mikis becomes smitten, naming the creature Tsaki. Tsaki’s not a pet, though, she’s a work animal, and Mikis and his grandfather take her up the mountain near their home on the Greek island of Corfu and load her baskets with firewood for the family. Overwork leads to injury, so Mikis takes Tsaki to a people doctor for an assessment. The doctor prescribes rest, a blanket pad, and lighter loads, and Mikis firmly relays the news to his grandpa. As Mikis becomes more attached to Tsaki, he gradually insists on more humane treatment for her in a number of ways, including taking her to visit a lonely male donkey in a nearby field-leading Tsaki to surprise Mikis with a donkey foal a few months later (a development hinted at when Mikis’ friend, Elena tells him that she and the male donkey were getting along “really, really well”). This is a quiet but spirited slice of Greek village life, and Mikis represents a modern attitude toward animal treatment, in contrast to his more old-school grandpa, who initially thinks of Tsaki as “a tractor” but who nevertheless comes around to Mikis’ point of view. Tak’s descriptions are pithy but evocative, and Mikis is a sympathetic and strong character. Hopman’s frequent monochromatic illustrations possess a scribbly liveliness that captures the casual motion of rural life. Mikis’ love for Tsaki is both palpable and understandable, and animal-loving kids will particularly enjoy this, as will those who appreciate getting a glimpse into the lives of kids in other places. An author’s note describes the Corfu donkey sanctuary that inspired the story. JH - Copyright 2015 The Board of Trustees of the University of Illinois.

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