John Philip Duck

Who doesn’t love ducks? Patricia Polacco has brought children dozens of fun characters, from silly Billy goats to magical wrens to classy pigs and so much more. She knows the joy of a good tale, and puts her stories together with her unforgettable illustrations. Writing childrens books for over twenty years, she has brought thousands of kids plenty of giggles and joy, and even a few lessons about friendship, family, and love.

John Philip Duck is everybody’s favorite duck. Edward, the boy who owns him, named him so because this ducky likes to march up and down to a famous composer, John Philip Sousa. Edward has raised him from just a little hatchling, and loves him more than anything in the whole world. The Peabody Hotel where Edward and his father work is a nice place, and everyone who works there thinks that Edward’s pet is the greatest. Everyone except the Mr. Schutt, the hotel manager. The idea of a duck marching around his hotel? Preposterous!

But Edward is not going to give up. He and the manager agree; if Edward can train a whole group of ducks to act just like John Philip Duck, then they can be a fun tourist attraction and Edward’s beloved pet can stay. Does Edward have it in him to train so many ducks? Well, because Polacco has taken a bit of history and transformed it into this story, kids and adults alike will probably be able to guess.

Polacco does indeed take the idea from a real person and his real title. Edward Pembroke actually has the title of Official Duckmaster, and has been so for fifty years! Polacco once again uses a unique part of history and delivered it to children in an entertaining way. John Philip Duck is a fine tale for duck lovers, fans of Polacco’s past work, and kids who just want a good story. Ideal for kids ages 5 and up, they will be drawn to her bright illustrations of the hotel, its fancy fountain, and the famous mallard himself, marching up and down a brilliant red carpet.

John Philip Duck

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