【英語時間】The lonely gorilla

2021-05-22 07:00

Ivan is a western lowland gorilla and does not live in the wild. He does not live in a zoo or a circus either. His ‘home’ is at the Exit 8 Big Top Mall and Video Arcade, where he is caged and showcased to visitors like an attraction.

Up to this point you may expect the book to be a gloomy tale of how Ivan misses the wild and longs for freedom. Not really. It is a diary full of funny, insightful, and sometimes tear-jerking entries about Ivan’s days in the mall. As a matter of fact, Ivan rarely thinks about the long gone days in the wild. What is on his mind then? TV shows, painting, and his animal friends, Stella the old elephant and Bob the stray dog.

Later, a new name gets added to the list. It is Ruby, a baby elephant. When Ivan meets the newcomer of the mall, he insists on taking on the role of a parent and protects the baby elephant. They make an odd pair of animals in a powerfully touching story. The story has great lessons on compassion, respect and parenting love.

1. cage (v) 困在籠裡
M: to put in a cage
E: The dog is caged in the pet shop.
E: He has the lion caged in the zoo.

2. attraction (n) 吸引之處
M: something that is used attract others
E: The castle is a main attraction of the park.
E: The attraction of the restaurant is the egg tart.

3. insightful (adj) 有見地的
M: having a clear understanding of something
E: Professor Chan has made some insightful comments about the book.
E: The journalist asked an insightful question.

4. tear-jerking (adj) 讓人流淚的
M: causing people to cry
E: Titanic is a tear-jerking film.
E: He hates tear-jerking stories. He likes comedies instead.

5. rarely (adv) 絕少
M: hardly, seldom
E: It rarely snows in October.
E: Lazy Louis rarely comes to school on time.

6. newcomer (n) 新人
E: someone who has arrived recently
M: They had a welcoming party for newcomers.
M: The newcomer did not know anything about the project.

7. respect (n) 尊重
M: esteem, honour
E: Show respect to your parents and be polite.
E: Respect is key to a solid friendship. 

About the book:The One and Only Ivan
Genre: fiction, animals
Author: Katherine Appelegate
Publisher: HarperCollins
Year: 2012
Number of pages: 320

原文刊於2021年2月4日#559親子王

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