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My Awesome Summer by P. Mantis
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My Awesome Summer by P. Mantis

3.9  ·  Rating details ·  204 Ratings  ·  70 Reviews
May 17: I was born today! It's a beautiful, sunny spring day!

This is the diary of P. Mantis, one of 150 brothers and sisters born on a garden bush. P. Mantis is an amazing insect: she can make herself look like a stick to hide from predators, she can swivel her head all the way around, and when she's grown up, she'll even be able to fly!

Told in dated entries, P. Mantis d
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published February 28th 2017 by Holiday House
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This would be a fun mentor text for a project where students to do a little animal research and then write from that animal's perspective.
Lisa Boyd
Feb 27, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I ran across this gem while weeding today. I love the diary-like entries of the life of this praying mantis.
Feb 18, 2018 rated it really liked it
A much more fun format for learning about insects than the typical nonfiction books.

Note: I received an unbound galley of this book from the publisher at ALA Midwinter 2017.
Edward Sullivan
Feb 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books, nature
The diary of a praying mantis. My favorite thing he does is eat his brother.
Cynthia Daniels
Sep 11, 2017 rated it it was amazing
This title is a delightful rendition of the life of a praying mantis who beautifully narrates her own story beginning on her May 17 birthday! Her story begins with facts just inside the book's cover lined with humorous text and beautiful paintings which teaches children about the life cycle of the praying mantis. Interestingly enough, the praying mantis that lived in the author's yard in Connecticut inspired this book and is related to mantises that came from China to Pennsylvania over a century ...more
Discover the life cycle of the praying mantis from birth in spring until death in late fall.
What a fun way to present the life cycle of a praying mantis! First, who can resist choosing this book based solely on the title? The bright, colorful acrylic ink paints illustrate the travels of the praying mantis among colorful flowers. Short informative sentences tell of the life of the mantis from hatching until death. He even manages to devour one (or two) of his brothers/sisters! The end pages of
Amanda Brooke
Nominate for the 2019 Washington state children's choice picture book award. Teachers will like the diary format and the facts about the life cycle of the praying mantis. The kids will love the frankness when he eats his siblings (is that a spoiler?).

I wonder if my older students will remember when we had a praying mantis in the library. Some kids would find bugs to feed it, but occasionally I would have to buy crickets. I never told the younger kids (and now they are my older kids) what happen
May 31, 2017 rated it liked it
Reading this, I kept thinking of "Dr. Mantis" from It's Always Sunny in Philadelphia.

This vibrantly illustrated book traces the lifecycle of a praying mantis, from hatching in the spring to laying her own eggs in the fall. Along the way, she must find food and dodge some of the hazards these insects face.

There is a lot of eating of other bugs in this book--the mantis even chows down on a few of her brothers and sisters. This accurately describes the behavior of this insect, but very young or se
P. Mantis journals her summer as she grows from nymph to adult, preying on other insects (including her siblings) and avoiding danger (birds, bats, etc.). A cute and funny first look at the lifecycle of a praying mantis. Doesn't get into too many details and skips mating altogether, although P. Mantis does lay eggs in the same location she grew up before taking a "long nap" toward the end of October. More detailed facts about praying mantises fill the endpapers of this book and offer tasty infor ...more
May 25, 2017 rated it did not like it
I guess I was in the minority in finding this marketed children's book containing the fictitious journal entries of a growing praying mantis weird, disturbing, and vague. I understand that the life cycle mirrors scientific fact, but it was loose and laced with an odd, repetitive humor. Abrupt transitions and unsuccessful personification (the voice of the MC Praying Mantis sounds like about the most disinterested hipster dude you ever came across in a snobby coffee shop) turned me off, and I woul ...more
May 05, 2017 rated it really liked it
Lifecycle of a praying mantis made into a humorous adventure in the form of a praying mantis' diary. Although a praying mantis pretty much does the same thing every day - eating other animals (including its brothers and sisters) and avoiding being eaten - the diary and excellent pictures keep it interesting. Begins May 17 with P's birth and ends October 17 with her lying down and taking "a long nap." End pages are packed with facts that are thoughtfully not obscured by the cover. Great read-alou ...more
The first time I read this through, I read it in the voice of Cheech & Chong's Sister Mary Elephant. The text is crafty and sharp with humor similar to Cheech & Chongs. This is a fabulous science book for children to learn all about the praying mantis in a fun, non-threatening way. Points out the facts of life without being gory.

Well done by author and illustrator Paul Meisel. Published by Holiday House!

#NF #PB #humor #science #insects
Jun 18, 2017 rated it really liked it
Ha! Facts about the Praying Mantis in interesting format with running commentary including "I ate my brother" and "Ran into one of my brothers. He tried to eat me. So I ate him." Realistic in my experience with praying mantises!

I'm eager to read this to my 6-year-old bug loving grandson and get his reaction. My guess is he will love it.
Feb 24, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: science-nature
Worked very well for read aloud for hard-to-entertain class of boys. Great illustrations, short, engaging text.

Wish the extra information about mantises was on book pages though instead of the inside pages of the cover (what are those called?) because from the library it gets covered with stickers and the jacket gets taped down so lots of it becomes unreadable :-(

Texas Critters class
Melissa Mcavoy
4 1/2 stars. A large format book with clear, colorful, watercolor illustrations. In humorous diary entries, P. Mantis narrates her life cycle. "May 19 - It's okay that I can't fly. The bush I was born on has aphids all over it. Yum! Soft and delicious!" End papers packed with facts add information and context. The gruesome realities of carnivorous insect life entertain and delight young readers.
May 22, 2017 rated it really liked it
Sweet diary with fun facts.
Because of it's journal format, I sorely missed the humor of Diary of a worm.
Debbie Tanner
This is the story about the life of a praying mantis. It's born on a beautiful spring day in May and tells the story of how it grows and changes. This one has potential for a writing mentor text. It would also be good paired with a story like "Diary of a Worm".
Katie Reilley
Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Cute picture book narrative from the perspective of the praying mantis told in the form of a dated diary (May through October). Some laugh out loud spots mixed with lots of great nonfiction information, and end pages are filled with mantis facts, websites and a glossary.
Jun 29, 2018 rated it really liked it
A humorous, yet informative look at the life cycle of a praying mantis.

While there is a lot information, the text is not overwhelming.

The illustrations are quite large and very colorful. The endpapers have a lot of factual information about the praying mantis.
Ms. Jeane
Jun 01, 2017 rated it liked it
This is an ok book, but I feel like they are trying too hard to do what Doreen Cronin does so well with her Diary of a Worm, Diary of Spider, etc. Plus learning about Preying Mantis is a little gruesome, lol!
Destinee Sutton
Jul 31, 2017 rated it really liked it
Darkly funny introduction to the short life of a praying mantis. Told in a kind of diary format, P. Mantis quips, "Praying? Yeah, I'm praying. Praying something tasty comes along that thinks I'm a stick."
Heather Montgomery
Apr 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
Young bug lovers will eat this one up! Narrated by a praying mantis who has just hatched, this is a story of growing up, exploring the world and life in general, all complimented by fun insect facts. Did you know that preying mantis hang upside down when they shed their skin?
Reminiscent of Diary of a Worm in tone and perspective, this is a good introduction to the short but action-packed life of a Praying Mantis. A good summertime read for early elementary kids who are exploring outdoors, and all those bug enthusiasts out there.
Jun 08, 2017 rated it liked it
The life cycle of a praying mantis, told by the mantis himself. The book felt redundant to me, but I suppose a praying mantis' life is just a matter of eating, shedding its skin, and avoiding predators, over and over again. It will be a nice addition to the insect study.
Sep 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
If you've ever wanted to know how a praying mantis spends it summer, than this book is for you. It is written in a journal format and all from the perspective of one mantis. It is full of all kinds of facts about the insect as well.
Mrs. Ross'S
Jul 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great read aloud! My 2nd graders loved it. Who wouldn't want to spend the day in the life of a praying mantis?
Dec 29, 2017 rated it really liked it
Interesting way for readers to learn about the life cycle of a praying mantis.
May 04, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Totally fun to read awesome book! Silly and factual.
Dec 28, 2017 rated it it was ok
I know it's supposed to be funny and educational, but the humor feels off, and kind of horrible. I suppose it is realistic in this way, but it may stir up existential angst for young children.
Jolyn Danielson
Apr 15, 2018 rated it liked it
It was a good book but am very wary of reading it to 1st & 2nd graders as it has the praying mantis eating his brothers, sister, bites a head off a bee, etc.
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Paul Meisel is the illustrator of Harriet’s Had Enough! by Elissa Haden Guest, What’s the Matter in Mr. Whiskers’ Room? by Michael Elsohn Ross, Dear Baby by Sarah Sullivan, and many other books, including the Theodor Seuss Geisel Honor–winning See Me Run. Paul Meisel lives in Connecticut.