But No Elephants. Reading Strictly no Elephants tonight I thought about this older book. I also remembered a little junior chapter book called The pocket Elephant by Catherine Sefton.
All three books deal with the unlikely, but somehow delightful idea, of having an elephant as a pet and even better having an elephant as a friend.
A young boy has a pet elephant. It is the day for a meeting of the Pet Club at Number 17. Sadly when the boy and his elephant arrive there is a sign on the door "Strictly No Elephants." As they travel home they meet a girl with a pet skunk. The pet club members don't want to play with skunks even though this little skunk does not stink.
The solution - start your own pet club with a sign that says All Are Welcome. And yes they all come. Such a variety of animals and their friends meeting in a wonderful tree house.
I love this line from the book which comes as the boy and elephant make their journey to the club meeting :
"He doesn't like the cracks in the sidewalk much. I always go back and help him over. That's what friends do : live each other over the cracks."
That's what friends do is a repeated refrain in this story which is about so much more than having an elephant as a pet.
There is even a song to go with this joyous book. Here is a reading of the whole book.
Sweet and affirming. Kirkus
In “Strictly No Elephants,” a sunny, smart, tongue-in-cheek tale written by Lisa Mantchev, friendships are born out of mutual respect for the idiosyncratic choices of others. New York Times
I absolutely adored seeing all the non-traditional pets. But my favorite part is the HEART of this book about fitting in. It’s a theme that any aged reader can relate too. Nerdy Book Club