By: Jamie Rix
PUblisher: Barron's Educational Series
Publication Date: April 2013
Reviewed by: Deb Fowler
Review Date: April 2103
No doubt it would be just another day on Mount Tranquil for all the pandas. Tranquil indeed until Ping ran toward everyone screaming, “Run for your lives!” The poachers were out to get them all. Not. An, Ping’s twin sister, told him that “your lying stinks worse than golden monkey poo.” Ping was always anxious for a big adventure, but there wasn’t a lot of it on the Wolagung Nature Reserve where tourist’s came to take their pictures all the time. Mao Mao, his mother, warned him to quit making up so many stories all the time. Even Choo, a golden monkey, called him a fibber. A fibber yes, but an adventurous one!
Ping was really getting bored and “if he didn’t do something exciting soon, he would almost certainly turn into a stone.” Maybe a big giant rock. Hui, a grandala bird, had overhead one of the rangers talking about some sort of Panda Exchange Program. Could it be one way that Ping could get out to see the world and have some real adventure in his life? Ping asked Mao Mao if she could help him write a letter to the London Zoo. “Help, is,” she replied, “the thief of self-knowledge.” Another one of her sayings wasn’t going to help him see the world. “Living life in the slow lane,” had to stop. What could Ping do to convince the rangers that he was just the perfect panda for the Panda Exchange Program?
This is a fun and zany story of Ping and his life full of panda-monium. All excitement and pandemonium break loose in the Wolagong Nature Reserve when young Ping gets his heart and head set on getting just the right kind of attention that will send him around the world. Each time Ping hears about a new exchange, he writes a letter. In return, another foreign panda tells him just the right kind of crazy skills he’ll need to be a star in their country. Ping tries everything from surfing, to dancing, to kickboxing, all of which land him in the vet’s office. If you have a youngster who loves adventure like Ping, he or she might just find it in the pages of this book!
Quill says: Ping is just the kind of wild and crazy animal that everyone will fall in love with!