A Tale of Two Sloths (Peter & Ernesto #1)

by Graham Annable (Author) Graham Annable (Illustrator)

Reading Level: 2nd − 3rd Grade
Series: Peter & Ernesto

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 expands his horizons and Ernesto the wanderer learns the value of home. With ridiculously cute art and simple, funny text, their reunion is even more adorable than you are imagining.

Laika Studios superstar artist, writer, and director Graham Annable brings all his significant powers to bear on this timeless friendship story for the youngest graphic novel readers.

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Kirkus Reviews

Annable's soft, expressive illustrations juxtapose Ernesto's easy, optimistic joy with Peter's apprehensive courage as they explore the world for the first time. Many readers will look forward to the next adventure. A solid pick for readers who have graduated from Elephant and Piggie, Frog and Toad, and Narwhal and Jelly.

Publishers Weekly

In a graphic novel-style story for young readers, Ernesto and Peter, two skinny, wide-eyed sloths, love to spot animal shapes in the clouds above the rainforest, but the extroverted Ernesto wants more: "I want to see ALL of the sky!" He takes off, dashing across a swinging bridge, splashing across a river, reaching the sea, and befriending a whale. Left behind, Peter is aghast: "He could get eaten." After some anguished indecision, he sets out to bring Ernesto back. He's terrified by the bridge Ernesto skipped over, and by almost everything else he encounters, but he gathers courage little by little, singing as he goes ("Did you find all the sky? I wish I could know!"). Working in multipanel sequences and individual frames, Annable bounces between the ebullient Ernesto and the worrywart Peter, rendering each with equal affection. Peter comes to understand that his friendship with Ernesto is strong enough to withstand his absence, but it's still a thrill when they are reunited. Annable's gift for caricature and zippy dialogue shines through, as he celebrates his characters' contrasting temperaments without a hint of snark. Ages 6-10. (Apr.)

Copyright 2018 Publishers Weekly, LLC Used with permission.

School Library Journal

Starred Review

Gr 1-4—Peter and Ernesto are sloths who enjoy a placid life of hibiscus munching and cloud watching. Ernesto declares that he wants to see the sky and sets off, eventually making it to the Arctic to see the northern lights, with the help of a gentle whale. Peter, meanwhile, distraught at being left behind and fearful for his friend's safety among many imagined perils, goes after him, guided by other creatures. This is a funny, touching tale. The sloths are thickly outlined, hill-like creatures with big eyes and occasionally flailing limbs. Their exaggerated movements and expressions will help emerging readers decode the vocabulary and connect with the emotions conveyed by the text. The characters' different notions of adventure and bravery recall other odd couple friendships, such as Mo Willems's "Elephant and Piggie" and Holly Hobbie's "Toot and Puddle." VERDICT Recommended for beginning reader shelves and elementary graphic novel collections.—Jennifer Costa, Cambridge Public Library, MA

Copyright 2018 School Library Journal, LLC Used with permission.

Review quotes

"Annable skillfully communicates a message that will be especially welcome to anxious kids—that sometimes small adventures take even more courage than big ones. Readers will be eager to reunite with Peter and Ernesto in the next installment of this new graphic novel series."-The Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books

Graham Annable
Oscar-nominated director Graham Annable is a cartoonist and animator living just outside of Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, with his wife and two boys. Mr. Annable's unique voice has been consistently recognized in the mediums of film, games, and graphic novels throughout his career, garnering numerous awards and nominations along the way. When he's not taking his pugs on a walk in the woods he can usually be found doodling ideas for his latest project in the studio.
Lexile Measure
Guided Reading Level
First Second
Publication date
April 20, 2018
Peter & Ernesto
BISAC categories
JUV008000 - Juvenile Fiction | Comics & Graphic Novels | General
JUV002000 - Juvenile Fiction | Animals | General
Library of Congress categories
United States
Adventure and adventurers
Graphic novels
Comic books, strips, etc
Quests (Expeditions)
Cartoons and comics
Comics (Graphic works)
Action and adventure comics
Separation anxiety
Individual differences

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