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And Tango Makes Three
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And Tango Makes Three

4.26 of 5 stars 4.26  ·  rating details  ·  5,056 ratings  ·  885 reviews
In the zoo there are all kinds of animal families. But Tango's family is not like any of the others. This illustrated children's book fictionalizes the true story of two male penguins who became partners and raised a penguin chick in the Central Park Zoo.
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published June 1st 2005 by Simon & Schuster Books for Young Readers (first published April 26th 2005)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Marika Gillis
This true story about two penguins who live in the Central Park Zoo has been creating quite a controversy. I heard about the book this morning on The View (yes, I do inevitably end up watching four women squabbling on tv when I don't have to work, and controversies like this are the reason I keep going back!). After hearing about it, I just had to check out the book for myself at Barnes and Noble.

This children's book tells the story of Roy and Silo, two male chinstrap penguins. Like all other ch
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Lisa Vegan
Jun 26, 2008 Lisa Vegan rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: absolutely everyone, especially kids 4-8 with same sex parents, but all kids & adults
Good grief Charlie Brown! What is all the fuss about this book, anyway?!?!!

This is a very sweet story. It’s the true tale about 2 male penguins who are a pair and how they came to tend an egg and then raise Tango, a baby penguin. This happens at the Central Park Zoo in New York City, and the illustrations really show off Central Park and the zoo; they’re beautiful and the expressions on the penguins’ faces are priceless.

This is a picture book for 4-8 year olds and it’s a wonderful story for kids
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Marie
This is apparently the #1 banned book in the country! My husband sought it out at the library, and it has a big red tag on the cover that says "BANNED!" I love the fact that it is a true story!
Eastofoz
Jun 26, 2010 Eastofoz rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: Readers who want to introduce same sex couples in literature to their children
Recommended to Eastofoz by: Children's group
Shelves: children-3-to-6
What a very cute story this turned out to be. Two male penguins end up hatching an egg that was given to them by the zoo keeper and they raise a baby penguin to become part of their happy family. The controversy surrounding this book seems excessive in my opinion. Sure it has two male penguins and not a male and a female (where's the "tragedy" there?) but the focus is the love that they have for each other so much so that they want to start a family and share that love with a baby.

This is the f
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Miss Lynx Canadensis
This is my 4-year-old son's very favourite book, which he has insisted on me reading to him almost every night before he goes to sleep ever since I bought it for him two years ago or so. There are other kids' books I like better myself, but this one is really sweet, and he loves it beyond all measure. He even named his stuffed toy penguin Tango (he had the toy before we got the book, but as soon as he heard the book read for the very first time, he decided the penguin was now Tango, and thus it ...more
Cathy
A perfect book. The paintings are beautiful, totally the kind I'd have poured over as a kid over and over again to catch all of the details of the lovely animals. The faces and body language for the penguins are so expressive, they would tell the story even without words. And the story is so touching and lovely, it actually got me all teared up. I know what it's like to want a baby and not be able to have one. It's such a sweet and wonderful story to see these two little guys get the family they ...more
Kimberlyn
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Kathryn
Review Updated*SEE COMMENTS*

Encouraged by my friend Chandra's positive review, I decided to finally give this book a try. It's popularity and controversy made me tentative before--not due to the subject, but because I thought it might have been a platform book meant to push an agenda, rather than simply tell a good story. Upon reading, I have come to the decision that it is both.

This is the very sweet true story of two penguins from the Central Park Zoo who happen to be male, happen to adore one
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Literary Ames {Against GR Censorship}


I chose this for Banned Books Week but I couldn't wait any longer to read it.

Disappointingly my library copy came with a warning slapped on the cover. What's to be frightened about with 'same sex families'?

And Tango Makes Three

Based on a real life story, two male penguins pair up and want what comes naturally to all other animals. They want to to procreate.

And every morning Roy and Silo woke up together. But one day Roy and Silo saw that the other couples could do something they could not.


Aww.

Roy and Silo had n
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Krista
As fond followers of ALA’s “Banned Book Week” would admit, when a title such as this one is added to the infamous list, it only makes circulation numbers on the title go up as well as critical discussion on the values of the work. The fact that the plot is based on a true story adds so much narrative power and reliability, and makes Richardson’s work one of the most excellent and relevant sources out of the fairly lackluster and minimal collection on this topic to date. Richardson is an assistan ...more
Sara
A cute read. Two male penguins are given an egg to hatch after they build a nest and sit on rocks. The baby is Tango. True story.

I checked it out after I found it was banned.

The baby penguins are really, really cute in these drawings.

I liked it.
Ronyell
“And Tango Makes Three” is an Aspca Henry Bergh Book award winning book about how two male penguins, Roy and Silo, try to have a child together. Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell along with illustrations by Henry Cole makes “And Tango Makes Three” a truly touching story about what it takes to make a true family.

Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell have done a great job at discussing one of the major issues in our society in a lighthearted and comforting way. Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell
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Debra
It's a shame this book got banned in schools. It's such a sweet true-life story. There are, after all, ALL types of families. I loved it and if I had little ones to read to, I'd share this sweet story with them.
Lisa Arbitrary - AttentionIsArbitrary M/M Blog
~ ~ ~

This should be on everyone's reading shelf! Perfectly poignant and delightful.

Snotchocheez
Sep 27, 2014 Snotchocheez marked it as to-read
And so Julie and I go today (Saturday, September 27, 2014) to the library, where they're celebrating "Banned Books Week". In front of the circulation desk is a shelf of books with big red "BANNED" placards attached to and obscuring their front covers. Upon closer examination, books like Catch-22, Beloved, Harry Potter and the Sorcerer's Stone, The Chocolate War, et.al. are displayed. On the top of the shelf, an obscured (but obviously a children's picture book) title looks down at my daughter an ...more
Krista the Krazy Kataloguer
Cute story about 2 male penguins who hatch an egg and become parents at the zoo in Central Park. Apparently this actually happened at the zoo. There was a book that came out a while back about homosexuality in nature--Biological Exuberance: Animal Homosexuality and Natural Diversity by Bruce Bagemihl. This incident at the zoo would seem to bear out the author's observations. Most interesting.
Kelly H. (Maybedog)
Note to detractors: THIS IS A TRUE STORY! The art is simple but sweet and fairly colorful considering the pictures are of penguins in their barren habitat. The story is beautifully told, with a minimum of anthropomorphizing. It's just one of those feel good books that you just have to read. I recommend it for everyone who can handle the idea that two male penguins can fall in love.
Emily
**DISCLAIMER: I am not responsible for any grammar mistakes or bad use of vocabulary because I wrote this at 2 in the morning when I couldn't sleep. **

ALRIGHT. SO. Adorable, honest, accepting, and did I mention how cute this is?!?!? If I ever become a Mom, this is going in my kid's bookshelf no matter what.

As soon as I saw this on a website of banned books, I immediately looked for it on the library website. Well...that's not technically true. I first went on a five minute rant about ignorance a
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Alice
I have wanted to read this book to see what all the hype is about...and hype it all is.

In an of itself the story is true interesting and the pictures are good. If you want to know what I think about the content read below. As a librarian, I ordered this book because I don't believe in censorship. I believe in having materials available that families might need. I believe it shouldn'tbe locked away or on a high shelf or behind the desk. If people need to talk about this subject, it will be on ou
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Megan
I understand why people might take offense to this book, but from my own view point, I find this book delightful. It is a great conversation starter to talk to children about a delicate topic such as homosexuality. We have to face the fact that there are men and women in our culture and cultures all over the world that are homosexual. Does that mean we treat them any differently? Of course not. I love my gay friends just as much as my heterosexual friends. Yes in our society, people view homosex ...more
Peacegal
It’s penguins! Gay penguins! How could anybody hate penguins? Well, it would seem that many people do, as And Tango Makes Three is one of the most challenged and banned recent books to waddle its way onto bookshelves.

The outcry probably wasn’t a surprise to the authors. They knew they were wading into touchy territory when they decided to create a picture book out of the true story of two male penguins at New York’s Central Park Zoo who paired off as mates, built a nest, and eventually raised a
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Cebon
We recently stumbled upon this book at the library without realizing what it was; I ("Mommy") noticed the cover, and loved the illustration. Moments later our two year old son chose another copy from the same shelf, and handed it to me. Later that evening, I was surprised and quite taken with the story upon discovering that (SPOILER) Tango does in fact have two daddies! Apparently we've been living under a rock, because I literally completely forgot that this is what this story is about.

And Tang
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Sheila
I read this to my 7 month old niece tonight. I only cried at the last page. :)
Anna Matsuyama
This book tells a true story about two male penguins ,Roy and Silo, who were given an egg and they hatched & raised a baby girl penguin Tango.

I read this to Kaito who liked the story & pictures. He thought it's silly that the pair tried to hatch a rock when they could steal an egg. He was pleased when zookeeper gave to the couple the egg to hatch.

After finishing the story, we had nice chat about family and that if you really wish for something it's not impossible.

LauraR
An amazing story that shows that even things that appear non-traditional can be traditional. Two male penguins in the Central Park Zoo fall in love and continue through life like all of the other penguins do. Of course, the only thing they are not able to do is conceive a child, but with the help of a zookeeper, they are able to obtain an egg and start a family. Just as all the other penguins take care of their babies and did everything necessary to have a healthy baby, these two penguins did th ...more
H
Apr 22, 2015 H rated it 5 of 5 stars
Shelves: children
What a wonderful, adorable, TRUE book about love in the animal kingdom (well, reasonably hand-drawn facsimile, the zoo). I was seriously perturbed by the handful of reviews claiming the book is super graphic and controversial. The penguin couple cuddle and raise a baby together - there is NO penguin sex in this book. As for controversy, it's only a bee in your bonnet if you think children shouldn't learn that, horror of horrors, sometimes dudes like other dudes. Also, THEY'RE PENGUINS.

My toddler
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Tatiana
Families come in all different arrangements, and that goes for penguin families, too. I know there's a lot of fuss about this book, but I don't see anything wrong with telling a sweet story about love and dedication.

Based on a true story, the Chinstrap penguins Roy and Silo at the Central Park Zoo are both boys, but they love each other and do everything like the other penguin couples. Except that they can't produce an egg to sit on. So the zookeeper gives them an extra egg to take care of, and
...more
Mary
And Tango Makes Three by Justin Richardson and Peter Parnell, illustrated by Henry Cole, Simon (Simon & Schuster Children's Publishing) 2005.

K-3 At New York City's Central Park Zoo, two male penguins fall in love and start a family by taking turns sitting on an abandoned egg until it hatches. –Summary from WorldCat

I LOVE this story for many reasons. First off, as one librarian told me, “penguins are the new dinosaurs.” Meaning, kids love penguins now, like many of them used to love dinosaur
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Beth
3-30-14 Update:

I read the review below and cringe. Did I really feel that way about this story? I reread the And Tango Makes Three today and can't believe I actually thought it was too political for a children's book. Because my beliefs have progressed over the years, I read this story today with a much different perspective. What I once thought was too political for a children's book now seems like just a regular story about how families come in all shapes, sizes, and kinds. While I was never o
...more
N_stefanie Akwa
If you only buy one new book to add to your classroom library, this is the one I would recommend! I couldn’t be happier to find a book that honestly and innocently portrays an “alternative” family structure that can provide some scaffolding for future interactions with children of same-sex parents. From my perspective, it is perfect. Even the illustrations are wonderfully playful, accurate, and fill the pages!

“In the zoo there are all kinds of animal families. But Tango’s family is not like any
...more
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