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Me . . . Jane Hardcover – Apr 5 2011

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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 40 pages
  • Publisher: Little, Brown Books for Young Readers (April 5 2011)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0316045462
  • ISBN-13: 978-0316045469
  • Product Dimensions: 21.9 x 1.3 x 24.8 cm
  • Shipping Weight: 340 g
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (4 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: #2,266 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Product Description


A 2012 Caldecott Honor Book
A Charlotte Zolotow Award Winner
A Horn Book Fanfare Book
A New York Times Best Illustrated Children's Book
A New York Times Notable Children's Book
A Booklist Editor's Choice Book
A Kirkus Reviews Best Book
A Kids' Indie Next List Book
A 2011 Bank Street College Children's Book Committee Outstanding Book
A University of Wisconsin-Madison CCBC 2012 Children's Choices Book
A Parents' Choice Silver Honor Book
A National Parenting Publications Awards Gold Winner
A Booklinks Lasting Connections Book
A 2014 Illinois Monarch Children's Choice Award Winner
A 2014 Iowa Goldfinch Book Award Winner

"This remarkable picture book is one of the few that speaks, in a meaningful way, to all ages."―Booklist, starred review

"McDonnell's book is... inspirational."―The Horn Book, starred review

"Children will appreciate McDonnell's original format and take heart that interests logged in their own diaries might turn into lifelong passions."―Kirkus Reviews, starred review

"McDonnell's skill as a cartoonist enables him to express Goodall's joy, wonder and satisfaction with a simple stroke of the pen."―New York Times

"[A] tender homage... engaging... an appealing and satisfying introduction to a well-known scientist and activist."―School Library Journal

"McDonnell's concentration on [Goodall's] childhood fantasies carries a strong message to readers that their own dreams--even the wildly improbable ones--may be realizable, too."―Publishers Weekly

About the Author

Patrick McDonnell is the creator of the beloved internationally syndicated comic strip MUTTS, which features the characters that star in five of his children's picture books: Wag!, The Gift of Nothing, Just Like Heaven, South, and Hug Time. He is also the creator of Me . . . Jane, a Caldecott Honor Book and New York Times bestselling picture book biography of Dr. Jane Goodall, and has written and illustrated the award-winning picture book Art.

Patrick sits on the board of directors of the Humane Society of the United States. He lives in New Jersey with his wife, Karen; their two formerly feral cats, MeeMow and Not Ootie; and their adopted terrier, Amelie. Patrick's website is

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Customer Reviews

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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Squeak 'n Banana on Sept. 20 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Who would have thought that a picture book could be both a bedtime story and inspirational biography? In the hands of Patrick McDonnell, comic creator of Mutts, this picture book is sure to become a classic for readers of all ages.

The title is a clever play on, "Me Tarzan, You Jane." Me...Jane tells the story of Jane Goodall as a little girl and her toy gorilla, Jubilee. Jane loves the outdoors and dreams from an early age of being able to help animals. McDonnell brings the world of young Jane to life in a wonderful combination of his drawings, antique bookplate illustrations, photographs, and even some of Goodall's own drawings. Me...Jane is a captivating read, and the image at the end with Jane Goodall waking up to her dream come true is perfect.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By stef on Jan. 30 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Who wouldn't love a book about the amazing Jane Goodall? This is nicely illustrated and shows children just how something as simple as a toy monkey can inspire someone to do great things in life. Our daughter is 6 and has been carrying her toy monkey around since she was 5 months old, and so she really related to this book and asked for us to read it again the next evening. For our family, it s a nice addition to our children's library.
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1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Anouk on Jan. 29 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This book is beautifully executed! It even includes original sketches by Jane Goodall.
Very simple wording. Wonderful message. My daughter (4 year old) liked it a lot. I would definitely recommend it.
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By Carol on June 12 2015
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
wonderfull......Just great.
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Most Helpful Customer Reviews on (beta) 87 reviews
48 of 50 people found the following review helpful
By D. Blankenship - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I cannot remember the last time I picked up and read a children's book that grabbed and held my attention quite a firmly as this work. Perhaps it was the subject matter. Perhaps it was the simple declarative prose. Perhaps it was the whimsically executed art work. Perhaps it was the fact that it was about Jane Goodall herself. I suspect it is a combination of all these factors, but what ever it was, it certainly worked for me!

This is the story of Jane Goodall as a young girl presented in a way that is bound to appeal to the targeted age group of 4 to 8. It features Doctor Goodall as a little girl and her stuffed chimpanzee as (Jubilee) they begin an adventure which will take her on an amazing life adventure far, far from her home; an adventure that is continuing to this day.

We see the young Jane becoming more and more fascinated with the natural world around her as she investigates the "exotic" wildlife around her such as squirrels, barnyard chickens and birds. Her vivid imagination and natural curiosity shine through on every page and we are treated to a glimpse of the Jane to come.

The text here is simple....

"One day, curious Jane wondered
where eggs came from.

So she and Jubilee snuck into
Grandmas Nutt's chicken coop..."

While simple, it most certainly tells a story; a story of growth and of one that will enchant and inspire the wee ones just getting started.

The illustrations are beautifully done; simply yet extremely well executed and go perfect with the text. On each facing page the author/illustrator has featured lightly printed engravings of a bygone age behind the print on the page. This is extremely effective. We are also treated to a two page spread of copies of a "nature's notebook" made my Jane Goodall herself as a young girl which is absolutely fascinating.

I have always been a fan of Patrick McDonnell and I must say that even he has outdone himself with this work.

I cannot think of a better book to inspire young readers, both girls and boys, to dream and more importantly, reach for their dreams than the thin volume I have here before me.

On a personal note I must admit to you that I have been a Jane Goodall fan and follower since she began her remarkable career and inspiring work. My wife has always teased me in that she thinks I may have had a sort of school boy crush of Ms. Goodall...perhaps she is right.

I very much recommend this work and it most certainly should be on the shelves of every child's library and in all school libraries.

Don Blankenship
The Ozarks
39 of 42 people found the following review helpful
Beautifully illustrated March 12 2011
By Laura Robles - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I love everything Patrick McDonnell does. If you are a fan of Mutts you will enjoy Me...Jane.
It's the story of Jane Goodall as a young girl and her stuffed animal monkey. McDonnell draws her monkey as if he is alive. It reminded me of Calvin and Hobbs in that way. But all kids see their animals as real. I know I did. The illustrations are so lovely. I teared up at the end. I recommend it to all animal lovers.
37 of 40 people found the following review helpful
Review from Books That Heal Kids April 25 2011
By Books That Heal Kids - Published on
Format: Hardcover
As a school counselor I am always looking for inspiring books to encourage kids to follow their dreams. I am so head over heels for Me...Jane as were the students. The illustrations are darling. This was my chosen read for Earth Day last week. Yep, I even read it to the 5th graders and they were so engaged as they listened to Jane's dream to one day go to Africa and live a life helping animals. Then on the last page comes a REAL photograph of Jane Goodall living out this dream. GASP went the kids. The kind of gasp I love. Yes, dream big! In a time of state testing and constant assessments it's a breath of fresh air to read such an encouraging uplifting TRUE story. I want kids to remember there is nothing wrong with having a dream of doing something special with their lives.
18 of 18 people found the following review helpful
pitch perfect for the littlest animal lovers April 17 2011
By M. Tanenbaum - Published on
Format: Hardcover
I don't usually think of biographies, even picture book biographies, as good choices for the youngest children, but author/illustrator Patrick McDonnell, who has numerous picture books and the nationally syndicated Mutts comic strip to his credit, has changed my mind. His just-published picture book about Jane Goodall, the internationally renowned chimpanzee researcher and crusader for wildlife conservation, would make a great read-aloud for preschoolers as well as early elementary school students, and in fact, its simple, inspirational story and charming illustrations can be enjoyed by all ages.

McDonnell's whimsical, childlike watercolor and ink illustrations are the star of this little book, which has very minimal text. We meet the child Jane with her prized stuffed chimpanzee, Jubilee, who accompanies her on all her adventures. Jane loved to be outside from an early age, taking great joy in observing nature and even writing about it in her notebooks (a page from which, complete with misspellings, is reproduced in this volume). "It was a magical world full of joy and wonder, and Jane felt very much a part of it." Jane sits high up in her favorite tree, reading the adventures of Tarzan and another girl named Jane in far-off Africa, and dreams of a life in Africa helping animals. At the end of this book, we see a grown-up Jane, waking up in a tent, befriending a real chimpanzee who looks much like Jubilee.

I loved everything about this book, including the nostalgic design, with the eggshell colored paper, old-fashioned type face, subtly colored illustrations which somehow give the book an old-fashioned tinge, and the use of ornamental engravings from the 19th and early 20th century, which appear to have been subtly stamped on the pages. McDonnell's simple illustrations somehow mesh brilliantly with the more elaborate Victorian engravings, and the whole book comes together flawlessly. A brief endnote gives further biographical information on Jane Goodall, along with a photograph of a baby Jane with her beloved toy chimp, and a message from Jane Goodall with information about her environmental advocacy program for young people, Roots and Shoots.

There are a number of other picture book biographies about Jane Goodall, including another new one published this month, which I have not yet seen: The Watcher: Jane Goodall's Life with the Chimps, by Jeanette Winter (Schwartz & Wade, 2011). Mike Venezia, author and illustrator of the very popular Getting to Know the World's Greatest Inventors and Scientists series, recently published as part of that series the volume Jane Goodall: Researcher Who Champions Chimps (Children's Press, 2010). Jane Goodall herself has written a number of books for young readers; especially appropriate for the youngest wildlife lovers is The Chimpanzee Family Book, lovingly photographed by Michael Neugebauer (North South Books, 1997), which follows five-month old Galahad and his chimpanzee family.
7 of 7 people found the following review helpful
Beautiful Illustrations & Easy to Read Words Make This A Must Have Book May 17 2011
By Mundie Moms & Mundie Kids Book Reviews - Published on
Format: Hardcover
With it's beautiful illustrations and simple text, the story of Me...Jane is simply a wonderful telling of Jane Goodall's young life. With it's adorable cover, this is one children's book I want to display proudly in my library.

I grew up a fan of Jane Goodall and being able to share this story with my kids and reading a little bit about Jane's life is fascinating. It's not just the story I love, but the illustrations and soft pastel colors really bring this story to life.

With Jane's inspirational message to "Follow Your Dreams", this is a book that I'd recommend to have in your personal home library and in the classroom. This is a great book to introduce younger students to Jane Goodall. I would be really surprised if Me... Jane doesn't win some sort of award. It's truly a beautiful book and a wonderful story.