Cover image for For Pete's sake
For Pete's sake
Walsh, Ellen Stoll.
Personal Author:
First edition.
Publication Information:
San Diego : Harcourt Brace, [1998]

Physical Description:
1 volume (unpaged) : color illustrations ; 25 cm
Pete, an alligator who thinks that he is a flamingo, worries when he begins to notice the differences between him and his flamingo friends.
Reading Level:
20 Lexile.
Program Information:
Accelerated Reader AR LG 1.2 0.5 46723.

Reading Counts RC K-2 1.5 1 Quiz: 20562 Guided reading level: I.
Format :


Call Number
Material Type
Home Location
Item Holds
PIC BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books
PIC BK. Juvenile Fiction Picture Books

On Order



Pete's a flamingo, he's sure of that. But why is he green? Why does he have four feet instead of two? And why doesn't he have feathers? Pete soon discovers he's not just another flamingo--and he learns what it means to fit in with friends.

Reviews 3

Booklist Review

Ages 4^-6. What first appears to be simply another it's-OK-to-be-different story becomes something quite special, thanks to a few mischievous tweaks from the talented Walsh. Pete's friends are flamingos. Although children know Pete is an alligator, Pete is convinced he's a flamingo, too. Unfortunately, he can't account for his four stubby legs and lack of feathers or the fact that he's green instead of rosy pink. Perhaps, like Robert Kraus' Leo, he's just a late bloomer. What finally eases his mind is a chance encounter with three "strangers" (Walsh cleverly avoids using the word alligator in the text) on their way to the swamp: "Flamingos who looked just like Pete." Pete's final conversation with his flamingo buddies brings the joke full circle. Walsh's precise paper-cut collages are just right. Subtly textured and with spacious, stark white backgrounds, they are pleasingly simple, giving the comedy and the message plenty of unencumbered opportunity to sink in. --Stephanie Zvirin

Publisher's Weekly Review

The sole alligator among three flamingos, Pete knows he is green, but he wants to be pink because "everyone else is." In one of this brief yet insightful tale's typically witty passages, his flamingo pals reassure him: "Don't worry.... You probably aren't ripe yet. It takes longer for some." Pete's cronies continue to comfort him when he disgruntledly observes that he has four rather than two feet ("You're lucky, Pete.... Two, and two extra") and that he doesn't have any feathers ("The best feathers take the longest to grow"). Finally he meets three fellow alligators or, as the text says, "flamingos who looked just like Pete"‘and he proudly announces to his pink pals, "I'm different but the same." To which they respond, "Well for Pete's sake, Pete.... You always have been." Disappointingly, Walsh's (Jack's Tale) minimalist cut-paper collage art varies little in some sequences. Yet the narrative's inarguably sound messages, among them the superficiality of appearance and the importance of being a supportive friend, coupled with the lightness of the delivery, virtually guarantee that this read-aloud will spark worthwhile discussion. Ages 3-8. (Oct.) (c) Copyright PWxyz, LLC. All rights reserved

School Library Journal Review

PreS-A gentle and amusing story about an alligator who believes himself to be a flamingo, despite all evidence to the contrary, and his total and unconditional acceptance by his flamingo friends. The notion that we do not need to be alike to enjoy one anothers' company is nicely expressed and beautifully illustrated by Walsh's collages that employ papers of gloriously varied textures. Simple enough for a three or four-year-old to grasp and attractive enough for adults to respond to, this picture book is an all-around winner.-Miriam Lang Budin, Mt. Kisco Public Library, NY (c) Copyright 2010. Library Journals LLC, a wholly owned subsidiary of Media Source, Inc. No redistribution permitted.