Elephant Man

Every night people swarm to a theater in London to see the Elephant Man, whose real name is Joseph Merrick. They scream in terror at the sight of him. But beneath Joseph’s shocking exterior, he longs for affection and understanding. Disfigured in childhood by a rare disease, Joseph is rejected by his family, bullied in the streets, and ridiculed at his job. While touring Europe with a freak show, he’s robbed and abandoned. Joseph seems to encounter misfortune at every turn, but eventually finds friendship with a kind doctor in England.

The Big Blue Thing On The Hill

When the Big Blue Thing, a camper van to us humans, arrives on Howling Hill, the local wildlife all agree it has to go. First the wolves try to scare it away, then the bears, boars, and foxes have a turn. Finally the wise owls suggest sending the smallest critters — the insects — to do the job. A cloud of bees, flies, and dragonflies make sure that the Big Blue Thing runs away at top speed!

My Name Is Jorge: On Both Sides of the River

A collection of 27 insightful poems that illuminates the migrant experience from the point of view of a grade school child from Mexico. Jorge doesn’t want to be called George. He thinks the name sounds strange. “What an ugly sound!/Like a sneeze!” His struggles to fit in result in a friendship with a boy named Tim; a tentative coming to terms with American society; and some degree of sadness when, upon his grandmother’s death, his family must cross the river again.