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When the Circus Came to Town
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When the Circus Came to Town

3.78  ·  Rating details ·  86 Ratings  ·  17 Reviews
A hilarious satire on small-town prejudice

It all started with the Halibuts. Then came Elmira Degoochy the snake lady. Then the Flying Gambinis -- all seven of them and their mother. And Mrs. Harrison the fortune-teller, and Mr. Wydel the strongman . . .

These are the new residents of Springfield, the formerly peaceful Midwestern town where up to now young Ivy's life had bee
Paperback, 144 pages
Published March 1st 1999 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR) (first published 1996)
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Rating details
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Bridget R. Wilson
Mar 18, 2008 rated it really liked it
I love this book. I was hooked from the first page. It's delightfully hilarious. And Ivy has a unique voice and perspective on her world.
Ashley Blake
Jul 24, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Polly Horvath entertains me again for an afternoon. Her books have such a wonderful blend of zany characters and valuable life-lessons, I gobble them up in one sitting.
R.K. Cowles
Oct 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
4 1/4 stars
Susan Honthumb
Oct 12, 2012 rated it really liked it
Delightful. Even though the recommended grades for this charming little book are for grades three through seventh, this older adult found it quite entertaining. Beyond the quirky characters, Polly Horvath is a great wordsmith and puts together sentences like: “I sank back into feigned sleep and my mother, ever cat-like, disappeared on little fog feet.” I wouldn't think that a third grader would see words like feigned, but maybe they should. I recommend this for any grade. My new plan is to read ...more
Lucy Sisk
May 28, 2012 rated it it was ok
Shelves: teen-read
Opravdu moc nemusím tenhle druh četby a styl psaní, ale řekla jsem si proč ne, neboť jsem tuhle knihu dostala na Vánoce a je mým zvykem řečíst každou knihu, kterou mám doma v knihovně.
Téma jak maloměšťáci přijímají nové lidi mezi sebe je sice poněkud ohrané, ale přesto nepřestává být vyhledáváným. Tomu vašak není u mě.
Nov 12, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s
A fun book as a group of circus people come to live in a small town. It was fun and funny, but had a good message about prejudice without being heavy handed. I enjoy Polly Horvath's books. This made me go to look for more of hers.
Erin Jones
Jul 31, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children
This is a great book for doing a circus thematic unit on, which is what I plan to do next summer. Underneath it all, it deals with prejudices and not liking people that are different from us. The ending is great and just so unexpected.
Feb 03, 2012 rated it liked it
Nice children's story. Got it for my kids from the library, and sat down and read it. Polly Horvath is always a little over the top, which kids (and I) love. Check out "Everything on a waffle" or "The trolls" for her best ones.
Kristen Jorgensen
Oct 26, 2008 rated it really liked it
I like Polly Horvath’s writing style.
This book is about a town struggling as ex-circus performers gradually move in, upsetting the towns "normalcy." Polly Horvath shows the simple truth about community, nobody has a right to exclude or choose who others exclude.
Barb G
Aug 24, 2014 rated it liked it
Shelves: andrew
3.5 stars. This is the third book we've read by this author. I like her sense of humor. There Is a reference to being "stoned" that I skipped over, but otherwise this book was entertaining and also a conversation starter on treating people kindly even if they come from a different background.
Oct 03, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: j-humorous
A girl records the reactions of town residents when various odd but funny circus performers move into town.
Sep 21, 2012 is currently reading it
i think,this book is so intresting
Mar 12, 2015 rated it liked it
Shelves: read-aloud
Cute. A read-aloud.
Francina Simone
Mar 05, 2011 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: on-bookshelf
Hilariously, beautiful.
Sep 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Very witty and enjoyable to read. Loved the odd characters and the moral aspect of the story.
Jun 07, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Metafiction for the younger set. Loved it.
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Polly Horvath is the author of many books for young people, including Everything on a Waffle, The Pepins and Their Problems, The Canning Season and The Trolls. Her numerous awards include the Newbery Honor, the National Book Award for Young People's Literature, the Boston Globe-Horn Book Honor, the Vicky Metcalf Award for Children's Literature, the Mr. Christie Award, the international White Raven ...more
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