Candace Fleming  
 
   
Sunny Boy
  Farrar, Straus  &
Giroux, 2005
978-0-374-37297-2
ages 4 to 8
 
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Sunny Boy! The Life and Times of a Tortoise

written by Candace Fleming
illustrated by Anne Wilsdorf

I have always longed for the quiet life. So begins Sunny Boy's tale. As a young tortoise, he enjoys a peaceful life, inhaling the sweet smell of orchids, reciting Latin, licking stamps, year after quiet year. But fate twists, and our hero falls into the hands of Biff the Brave, an accident-prone performer of daredevil deeds. When Biff attempts his most dangerous stunt—going over Niagara Falls in a barrel—the shy and retiring Sunny Boy is suddenly swept into history's limelight. This wild, funny tale is based on the story of an actual tortoise who went over the falls.

Read the Reviews
Sunny Boy the tortoise wanted only to live a long, quiet life, but fate intervened: Pelonius Pimplewhite, a horticulturist, took him home. When the scientist died, Sunny Boy went to live with ... Augustus' nephew, Biff, a self-proclaimed daredevil. Unfortunately, Biff fizzles as a human cannonball and flops as a wing walker. Determined to try one last stunt, Biff roars off to Niagara Falls and builds a barrel for going over the falls. Just as the lid is closing, someone tosses Sunny Boy inside, and man and beast have the wildest ride of their lives. The energetic cartoon artwork combines foolhardiness with fun, and an author's note, "The Truth behind the Tale," discusses the real-life incident on which this book is based. Kids won't necessarily care about the facts, but they will whoop over the silliness and derring-do.

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