In a book called The One and Only Ivan, it makes sense that Ivan is at the heart of the story. And guess what? Not only does his life take center stage, but he's also our one and only narrator. This book is all Ivan, all the time, as Ivan recounts his experiences directly.
So when it comes to other characters, we only really get to know them as they pertain to Ivan—he shares with us what they share with him, but we're never hanging out in their brains. This keeps us focused on Ivan, allowing us to really dig into the nuances of our gorilla main character and—importantly—appreciate how smart and kind he is. And as we do, it becomes crystal clear that people who aren't kind to animals and don't care about their experiences are not only no friends of Ivan's, but no friends of ours.