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Stumpe Layout

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FC: than's | By Jennifer Stumpe Illustrations by Beth Speer | Aunt Jo Jo's Magical Gifts | Ethan's Great African Journey

2: Written by Jennifer Stumpe Illustrations by Beth Speer | Aunt Jo Jo's Magical Gifts Ethan's Great African Journey Author Jennifer Stumpe Illustrations by Beth Speer

3: For my late Aunt, Carol "Sue" McCoskey - Jen S For my three "J"'s -Beth S | A Special Thank You to my Dad, Larry Baldwin, for his editorial help -JenS | Check out for book signings, event dates, and to schedule book talks Follow Beth's Art and Illustrations at

4: "Hey, everyone, Aunt Jo Jo’s calling from Africa!” Mommy’s voice carried throughout the house, all the way to Ethan in the basement. Ethan picked up the phone. "Hi, Aunt Jo Jo, have you seen any lions yet?"

5: "I sure have, and I have also seen zebras, hippos, rhinos, giraffes, and even snakes! It is so beautiful here. The grass is tall and green; the rivers are lined with colorful wildflowers and trees; and every day is sunny and bright," explained Aunt Jo Jo. | "I would love it there!" exclaimed Ethan. "You’ll get your chance to visit someday when you’re older,” she replied. "Until then, the gift I mailed you will remind you of Africa." "Awesome, I can’t wait!" Then before he hung up the phone, Ethan added, "I love you, Aunt Jo Jo!"

6: “It’s here! It’s here!” | Ethan shouted as he brought in a package from the porch. “Look, Jessica, it’s addressed to both of us. Here is yours.” Ethan handed his sister a beaded necklace. “And here is mine--Wow! It’s a lion’s mask! And there is a note attached.”

7: This African headdress was made especially to be worn by those who demonstrate courage, strength, and wisdom. Wear it and feel the power of the lion. | Ethan headed outside with his mask to play in the backyard. As he put on his mask, he thought about the note, "I wonder what the power of the lion feels like?" Little did he know, he was in for the adventure of a lifetime!

9: "STRANGER!" | shouted out the zebra as a warning. He pointed at Ethan, who suddenly found himself in a strange land. | All the animals scattered in the blink of an eye, hiding behind BIG leafy green bushes and trees. | Ethan said as he looked around. "This isn't my backyard. I'm lost!" | "What in the world is going on?"

10: “I’ll help you out, boy,” said the zebra as he approached Ethan. “Where am I?” Ethan asked. “Look around. Can’t you tell? You are in ... | "AFRICA!" | "Cool face looks like our king," said Zippy the Zebra. "Thanks, my Aunt Jo Jo gave it to me. It's awesome! I put it on and somehow wound up here," explained Ethan. | "AFRICA!"

11: "Hop on and I'll give you a ride!" | Zippy took Ethan clear across the savanna to meet King Rory. The land was beautiful, just like Aunt Jo Jo had described on the phone. | "Hop on, I'll Give You a Ride!" | "Well, Ethan, that mask must have some powerful magic to transport you to Africa. I hope for your sake it can get you home, as well."

12: "So, this is the boy who dares enter my kingdom without permission!" bellowed the king. "Why are you here?" | Ethan explained the power of his mask to the king. "That's a pretty amazing mask. You can visit whenever you like," King Rory told Ethan. "Thank you very much, your majesty," Ethan humbly replied. "Well, boy, jump on! Let's have some fun," belted out Zippy. | Ethan rode Zippy to the nearest watering hole where they met some of Zippy’s friends.

14: "Hello, Zippy, where are you?" shouted Ethan. | "Quiet down, boy. I'm right here behind this bush," whispered Zippy. Ethan sensed the fear in his friend's voice. "What's going on? What happened here?" | The sun started to set, and Ethan realized he better head home. Before Ethan took off his mask, he told Zippy he would come back to visit soon. When Ethan got home, he hid his mask under his bed so that his little sister wouldn’t find it. He was worried Jessica would wind up in Africa without him, and that was a terrifying thought. When the weekend arrived, Ethan was ready for an adventure. He put on his mask and woke up in Africa. However, something had changed. It was dark and dreary and no longer inviting.

16: “The Black Mamba stole King Rory’s crown! He is the fastest, deadliest, and most feared snake in Africa. He rules the land now!” exclaimed Zippy. "This is TERRIBLE! How?" asked Ethan. “Black Mamba and his gang attacked the king while he was sleeping. They captured the guards and seized his crown,” explained Zippy. “King Rory and his court were lucky, though. The wicked Mamba released them unharmed if they would agree to spread the word that there is a new king.”

17: "The Black Mamba has destroyed your beautiful land. Where is he? I want to give him a piece of my mind!" exclaimed Ethan. "It won't do any good. We have all tried. The only way to save the Kingdom is to somehow recapture the crown," explained Zippy. "Count me in. I'll do whatever I can to help!" Ethan promised.

18: Ethan returned home and started collecting stuff he thought he might need to steal the crown. He laid out a camouflage outfit, grabbed a pink plastic “princess” crown from Jessica’s room, and found some items in Dad’s fishing tackle box. He placed all of these things in a backpack to take with him on his next trip. “Ethan, why in the world are you packing this stuff?” Mommy asked as she went through his backpack. “I’m on a mission. I have to save the kingdom!” Ethan replied. “Oh, really? Well, good luck with that,” laughed Mommy as she left the room. Ethan knew he would have to be brave and started mapping out his plan of attack on King Mamba.

19: When Ethan returned to Africa, he was dressed head-to-toe in camouflage. "Let's do this!" Ethan said as he hopped on Zippy's back. "Zip-Zip- and off we go!" exclaimed Zippy.

20: Soon they were near the king's throne. "Good luck, Ethan," Zippy whispered. "I'll distract the guards for you with these bananas."

21: While the guards were off following the trail of bananas, Ethan crawled unseen to the back of the throne where King Mamba and a guard were sleeping. He could see the gold crown was in the center of King Mamba's coil. | Ethan carefully lay down and opened his backpack. He spotted a broken branch nearby and made a fishing pole with the line and hook that he brought from home. He then began trying to hook the crown.

22: “I got it!” thought a very happy Ethan, as he pulled up the crown and put it in his backpack. Then, to complete his clever trick, Ethan replaced the real crown with Jessica’s plastic “princess” crown and crawled back to his friends.

23: By the time Black Mamba awoke, he was no longer so frightening. He became the laughing stock of the kingdom when he put on Jessica’s plastic “princess” crown. He didn’t know that Ethan had already taken the real crown to King Rory.

24: “Order in this kingdom has been restored, thanks to our new friend, Ethan,” King Rory told his subjects.

25: “Ethan, please kneel and listen to my words. You have earned our lasting friendship and thankfulness for your display of courage. I, therefore, pronounce you to be a royal knight of this Kingdom now and forever more.” “Thank you, King Rory. I will always cherish this moment. Now it’s time for me to go. I’ll see you another day,” said Ethan as he removed his mask.

26: As Ethan left for home, his new friends cheered him goodbye, hoping to see him again one day.

27: “ETHAN, come on in!” Mommy shouted from the back porch. "Aunt Jo Jo’s here!” | “Hi, kids, your mom says you really like the gifts I sent you.” “You have no idea,” snickered Ethan as he held his lion’s mask behind his back. “I just stopped by to tell you my good news. I won a once- in-a-lifetime trip to OUTER SPACE! I leave in two weeks.”

28: “No way, that is too cool! Send me some pictures,” Ethan begged. “Oh, I’m sure I can do better than that!” Aunt Jo Jo said with a wink as she left to pack for her space adventure. | Or will it be Ethan's next adventure???

29: Aunt Jo Jo's NEXT Adventure... Coming SOON to Bookstores near you! | 3 | 2 | 1 | BLAST OFF!

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  • Title: Stumpe Layout
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  • Published: about 5 years ago