Peter & Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths

Peter & Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths

Peter and Ernesto are sloths. Peter and Ernesto are friends. But Peter and Ernesto are nothing alike. Peter loves their tree and never wants to leave, while Ernesto loves the sky and wants to see it from every place on Earth. When Ernesto leaves to have a grand adventure, Peter stays behind and frets. The two friends grow even closer in separation, as Peter the homebody ex...

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Title:Peter & Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths
Author:Graham Annable
Rating:

Peter & Ernesto: A Tale of Two Sloths Reviews

  • Katya Vinogradova

    This is quite a charming comic book about the adventures of two best sloth friends, Peter and Ernesto. The friends have a great dynamic that kids can learn from. They can also see the value in following your friend to the edge of the world, even when you would rather stay on your favorite tree forever. Sure, the tree is nice and cozy, but what good is it without your best friend by your side? And of course the adv

    This is quite a charming comic book about the adventures of two best sloth friends, Peter and Ernesto. The friends have a great dynamic that kids can learn from. They can also see the value in following your friend to the edge of the world, even when you would rather stay on your favorite tree forever. Sure, the tree is nice and cozy, but what good is it without your best friend by your side? And of course the adventures of Peter and Ernesto will teach those kids who are reluctant to step out of their comfort zone that the world may be a big and scary place, but it's also full of exciting things just waiting to be explored.

  • Lauren

    My new favorite graphic novel for young readers!

    Think a mix of Burt and Ernie, Finding Nemo, Mo Willems, and SLOTHS!!

  • Betsy

    To quote the wise words of MC Scat Kat, “opposites attract”. Particularly when those opposites are best buddies. The idea of the carefree soul, untethered by earthly woes, paired with a perpetually concerned best friend, is a staple in all possible forms of entertainment. Children’s literature is no exception. At its best this kind of pairing will introduce us to characters like

    . But Lobel, for all his charms, set a pretty high bar with that book. How likely is it that lightning of

    To quote the wise words of MC Scat Kat, “opposites attract”. Particularly when those opposites are best buddies. The idea of the carefree soul, untethered by earthly woes, paired with a perpetually concerned best friend, is a staple in all possible forms of entertainment. Children’s literature is no exception. At its best this kind of pairing will introduce us to characters like

    . But Lobel, for all his charms, set a pretty high bar with that book. How likely is it that lightning of this sort could strike twice? Well, I’m not going to tell you that

    is the next Frog and Toad or anything quite like that. For one thing, it’s a graphic novel, not a series of easy books containing short chapters. For another, it’s a single story, not a bunch of little ones. But if you’re looking for that same level of friendship, compassion, and bite-sized adventuring, I don’t think you’d be kooky to check out the latest from Graham Annable. Who knew sloths had so much pep?

    Why are sloths so slow? Because they’re content, of course. Peter is anyway. He’s got his favorite tree. He’s got his favorite activity (figuring out shapes in different clouds). He’s got his singing talent. And he has his best friend Ernesto. That is, he HAD his best friend Ernesto. The trouble is that Ernesto isn’t as content with his lot in life as Peter. It’s not enough for him that he gets to see one little patch of sky. He wants to travel all over the world to find other patches of sky, over deserts and mountains and water and ice. So Ernesto takes off, leaving a gutted Peter behind. Now Peter is determined to find his friend and to take him home. But will Ernesto even want to return? And, more importantly, how is Peter going to find him at all?

    When I read the book I was enthralled, but now that I’ve managed to produce two small literary critics I figured I should try it out on them before taking a crack at a review. My 7-year-old daughter listened faithfully, as did my 4-year-old boy. When it was done they were thoughtful. Then my daughter remarked, “It’s not very funny, is it?” It was an interesting point, actually. There’s humor in it, certainly, but it’s not a gag-forward telling. Mr. Annable isn’t going for slapstick comedy or big goofy moments. There was one moment that I caught my kids off-guard and made them laugh, and that was when the monkeys were going about calling for their friend Dave. “Dave” is an inherently funny name. The

    movies figured this out long ago, and this book does to. Something about the single syllable nature of it, I think. At any rate, I wouldn’t peg this book as a laugh-a-minute gigglefest, but there’s a quiet, understated humor to it that’s really going to appeal to the kid that just wants a good story with expressive, interesting characters.

    Here. Come with me now. I want to show you the exact moment I fell in love with this book. It’ll only take a second. Have a seat. Comfy? Okay, so let’s look at the two-page spread that goes over pages four and five. Mr. Annable, knowing as he did that he only had 119 pages to work with, makes quick work of setting the plot it motion right at the story’s start. Fair enough, but because he knows what he is doing he actually manages to show, rather than tell, when a character is having a change of heart. On these two pages our hero sloths are admiring various cloud formations. Overcome with the beauty of the moment, Peter bursts into song about how nothing ever changes and nothing ever will. He seems really juiced by this realization. Ernesto, meanwhile, is having a sudden dark night of the soul. All you really need to do here is watch his eyes. He goes from easygoing contentment to slow, dawning sorrow. With just the slightest of lines under one eye and pupils that shift downward in thought, the artist has created an inciting incident that’s entirely internal, but also obvious to any reader less oblivious than Peter.

    I think, in my old age, I’ve decided that it isn’t as important that a child reader find a character likable as it is that they find them relatable. And for many, I believe that Ernesto will be the sloth kids aspire to be while Peter is the sloth they identify with most closely. It stands to reason. Peter loves familiarity and routine. So do kids (younger ones anyway). But as children age they become more like Ernesto, eager to see the world and find their place in it. Maybe that’s the secret to this kind of buddy pairing. It’s the two sides of childhood. The first part that longs for safety and stability and the second part that just wants to get away.

    Graham Annable. Graham . . . Graham Annable. Shoot. How the heck do I know that name? It was driving me crazy for a while. It wasn’t because I knew his adult books like

    or

    . But as I may have mentioned, there’s that way he draws eyes. It’s like nothing else I’d ever seen. That’s when it struck me. Eyes, eh? And this is a book from First Second? It only took me a moment to rush over and check my copy of

    published in 2013. A quick check inside and lo and behold I was right. About five years ago Mr. Annable was last seen illustrating a wordless telling of Goldilocks and the Three Bears. In that tale the bears are almost entirely eyes. Eyes that, to the infinite amusement of my children, don’t really change expression much in the course of the tale. He’s worked primarily in the world of adult comics, so I hope

    is a sign of further things to come in the kid sphere.

    If I were to compare

    ’s style to any other series or artist, the closest I’d come up with would be Sara Varon. Books like

    and the more recent

    sport the same easygoing vibe as Annable’s. These are graphic novels for those kids that don’t need big action set pieces, bloody battles, or robot wars to retain their interest. If the children’s comic world was like the movie world,

    would below in the indie film category. It’s quiet and touching. A story of friendship and finding what it is that you love in this world, even as you continue to love what you’ve left behind. Sweet and honest, with a magnificent ability to show rather than tell,

    ’s first adventure is just the right speed for just the right reader. Find it and hand it over to that kid today.

    For ages 5-10

  • Erica

    Peter and Ernesto are sloths and BFFs. Their favorite pastime is hanging out at the top of the tree, finding shapes in the clouds while snacking on hibiscus flowers.

    One day, Ernesto realizes he loves his friend and his tree and the sky and everything else but he also knows there are more pieces of sky to see. He decides to follow his curiosity, promising Peter he'll be back soon.

    Peter is a worrywart who does not like to take risks, who is comfortable with the status-quo and not long after his fr

    Peter and Ernesto are sloths and BFFs. Their favorite pastime is hanging out at the top of the tree, finding shapes in the clouds while snacking on hibiscus flowers.

    One day, Ernesto realizes he loves his friend and his tree and the sky and everything else but he also knows there are more pieces of sky to see. He decides to follow his curiosity, promising Peter he'll be back soon.

    Peter is a worrywart who does not like to take risks, who is comfortable with the status-quo and not long after his friend departs, he becomes worried that Ernesto is going to get eaten out there in the wide world. Probably by a bear. Oh, Peter also likes to sing.

    Ernesto explores.

    Peter reluctantly decides to follow.

    Things happen.

    The story is fine. It's cute. Kids will love it.

    For me, though, it doesn't have that spark, the charm and wit, of so many of these other opposites-attract book.

    The illustrations, however, had me enthralled. They are just so fun and I love them to bits!

    Also, some of karen's favorite woodland creatures make an appearance!

    All in all, the pictures carried this story for me but I think other readers will enjoy both.

    Wondering why my pictures are always so lousy? It's because I just snap a shot from the book in front of me. I don't change the lighting, I don't try to make it look nice. I like to pretend I'm showing what I see but, honestly, it's me being lazy.

  • Destinee Sutton

    An adorable graphic novel about friendship, worrying, and adventure. It reminded me of an old favorite

    -- one friend wants to stay home, the other wants to see the world.

    The only thing missing for me was jokes about how slow sloths are. I kept waiting for there to be some twist about how it was taking ages for Peter and Ernesto to get anywhere, but, alas, it didn't seem to factor in. Still, I think a good number of kids will already know that sloths are super slow and find it

    An adorable graphic novel about friendship, worrying, and adventure. It reminded me of an old favorite

    -- one friend wants to stay home, the other wants to see the world.

    The only thing missing for me was jokes about how slow sloths are. I kept waiting for there to be some twist about how it was taking ages for Peter and Ernesto to get anywhere, but, alas, it didn't seem to factor in. Still, I think a good number of kids will already know that sloths are super slow and find it funny on the face of it that a sloth wants to travel around the world.

    Overall very cute and compelling. I loved the ending. All around an easy sell to even the most reluctant readers.

  • Michele Knott

    Love this earlier graphic novel. Perfect for readers who are looking for something longer, but not ready for a full graphic novel.

    And it has sloths.

  • Erica

    A cute story that will appeal to younger children. This is a good one for the themes of friendship and bravery. The art was delightful.

  • Arminzerella

    Peter and Ernesto are friends and they are also sloths. Usually, they are happy hanging out in their tree together, but after some cloud watching, Ernesto decides that he wants to see the ENTIRE sky and sets off on an adventure. Peter is terrified that something awful will happen to his friend and he cautiously goes looking for him. Meanwhile, Ernesto is having a great time making new friends and seeing all sorts of different skies – ocean skies, desert skies, constellations, northern lights. Bo

    Peter and Ernesto are friends and they are also sloths. Usually, they are happy hanging out in their tree together, but after some cloud watching, Ernesto decides that he wants to see the ENTIRE sky and sets off on an adventure. Peter is terrified that something awful will happen to his friend and he cautiously goes looking for him. Meanwhile, Ernesto is having a great time making new friends and seeing all sorts of different skies – ocean skies, desert skies, constellations, northern lights. Both sloths end up meeting and making new friends, and eventually Ernesto decides it’s time to come home and Peter is there waiting for him. Very sweet story about friendship with adorable sloth characters.

  • Kris Patrick

    Cute friendship story.

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