Jo-Jo the Melon Donkey

Publisher: Egmont

Master storyteller Michael Morpurgo brings all of his trademark warmth into this sweet tale of a little donkey who is down in the dumps.

Ill-treated by his greedy owner, Jo-Jo is loaded up every day with more melons than he can manage to sell on the streets of his beloved Venice. When his master sets his sights higher than the city's reliable back-streets they go to try their luck in the famous St. Mark's Square, in the hope that the Doge himself might be tempted by their wares. In fact, it is the Doge's daughter who spots them, and she is as taken with Jo-Jo as she is with the delicious fruit. When she's allowed to choose a horse as a birthday present her father forbids her from picking Jo-Jo instead, but when disaster strikes in Venice, Jo-Jo soon proves he is as brave as any stallion.

This is a smart new pairing of 'the nation's favourite storyteller' with the fresh talent of Helen Stephens. The picturesque locations of this story are brought to life by Stephens' wonderful, impressionistic paintings, which give this scenic tale a rich vibrance. With a longer text than the average picture book, this will engage those story fans hungry to move to the next level of narrative, and Morpurgo's traditional style makes this the perfect bridge to a chapter book. 

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