The Definitive Guide to

A Boy Called Bat

Written by Elana K. Arnold and illustrated by Charles Santoso
Published by HarperCollins
- Bookroo Rating
Goodreads Rating - 4.0 / 5.0
List Price
Target Age
Book Type

What's A Boy Called Bat About

Publisher Summary

The first book in a funny, heartfelt, and irresistible young middle grade series starring an unforgettable young boy on the autism spectrum, from acclaimed author Elana K. Arnold and with illustrations by Charles Santoso. For Bixby Alexander Tam (nicknamed Bat), life tends to be full of surprises—some of them good, some not so good. Today, though, is a good-surprise day. Bat’s mom, a veterinarian, has brought home a baby skunk, which she needs to take care of until she can hand him over to a wild-animal shelter. But the minute Bat meets the kit, he knows they belong together. And he’s got one month to show his mom that a baby skunk might just make a pretty terrific pet. “This sweet and thoughtful novel chronicles Bat’s experiences and challenges at school with friends and teachers and at home with his sister and divorced parents. Approachable for younger or reluctant readers while still delivering a powerful and thoughtful story” (from the review by, which named A Boy Called Bat a best book of 2017).

What Kind of Book is A Boy Called Bat

What Questions Should I Ask My Child

  • Bat (Bixby Alexander Tam’s nickname) is a life-like character of a boy on the autism spectrum, and this wonderful book can help your child understand autism better and develop empathy. Bat makes a friend who loves Bat just the way he is. Talk with your child about autism and about how we can all use a friend and be a friend.

Trusted Reviews & Ratings

B is for Bookworm
Human Development Degree, Book-loving aunt

Bat is a wonderful, developed character in this story about an animal-loving boy on the autism spectrum who thinks a skunk makes the perfect pet. This story can really help children reading understand and have empathy for those on the Autism spectrum as you read about how Bat feels and the way his friends interact with him. You also get to learn a lot of fun things about skunks!

Book Lists That Include A Boy Called Bat

Book Topics › autism
Children's Books About Autism
Book Topics › animals
Adorable Children's Books About Animals
Book Topics › 2019 Chapter Book Summer Reading List
2019 Summer Reading List for Readers Ages 8-12
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Who Wrote A Boy Called Bat

Elana K. Arnold

Elana K. Arnold writes books for and about children and teens. She holds a master’s degree in creative writing/fiction from the University of California, Davis, where she has taught creative writing and adolescent literature. She is a frequent speaker at schools, libraries, and writers’ conferences. She is the author of several acclaimed young adult novels including the Printz Honor book Damsel and National Book Award finalist What Girls Are Made of, as well as her picture books What Riley Wore and An Ordinary Day. Currently, Elana is the caretaker of seven pets, only two of which have fur. She lives in Huntington Beach, California.

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Who Illustrated A Boy Called Bat

Charles Santoso

Charles Santoso (Chao) loves drawing little things in his little journal and dreaming about funny, wondrous stories. He gathers inspiration from his childhood memories and curiosities he discovers in his everyday travels.

He has illustrated several picture books, including The Snurtch and I don’t Like Koala—both written by Sean Ferrell, Ida, Always—written by Caron Levis, which was mentioned in the New York Times as “an example of children’s books at their best,” Peanut Butter & Brains—written by Joe McGee, and Penguin & Tiny Shrimp Don’t Do Bedtime—written by Cate Berry. Also a New York Times bestseller Wishtree by Katherine Applegate and A Boy Called Bat by Elana K Arnold.

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What Has Elana K. Arnold Said About A Boy Called Bat

Nothing yet! 🤷 You should let Elana K. Arnold know that we want more details from them about A Boy Called Bat!

What Has Charles Santoso Said About A Boy Called Bat

Nothing yet! 🤷 You should let Charles Santoso know that we want more details from them about A Boy Called Bat! Try tweeting at them on twitter (@minitreehouse) or messaging them on instagram (@charlessantoso).
How does Bat like to carry the skunk?
  1. In his hands
  2. In a sling
  3. He doesn't like to carry it
  4. In a basket
Take the Full Quiz!

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Book Details

ISBN 10:
ISBN 13:
Publication Date:
March 13, 2018