I have a confession to make.
When I was a wee babe, I ate books. Yes, I did. I ate them. They were right there. They smelled quite nice. And I found that they tasted pretty good.
But the Mom Person moved them out of my reach and I soon found other, better things to chew on and eat. Now, in my maturity, I enjoy books because they bring me closer to the people that I love. They bring me soft hands and soothing voices. Sometimes giggles and laughter. And sometimes I learn a thing or two.
A book that was recently read to me and brought those peals of JOY and laughter is another one by that wonder boy, Oliver Jeffers. The Incredible Book Eating Boy. It was published by Philomel Books in 2006. It is suitable for all ages. It is hilarious!
I am a HUGE Oliver Jeffers fan! His books are incredibly unique. This story is about Henry, a boy who LOVES books! But, he loves to EAT them! He loves to eat all sorts of books. And he finds that the more he eats — the smarter he gets! And he wants to be smart, so he eats and eats. But then he finds that he is feeling very ill indeed! And all the books that he was ingesting start getting all mixed up. In his tummy and in his head. Everyone tells him he should stop eating books. So he decides that he must. Then one day he picks up a book and instead of eating it, he opens it and reads it. And, lo and behold!, he discovers that he loves to READ!
The story is a fun one, but the book itself is a real treasure. There is a big piece of the back of the book that has been bitten off! ( I did not do it!) The kids thought that was pretty funny. But the really clever thing is that the illustrations and text are printed on copies of real book pages from found books. Mr Jeffers has said that he used pieces of paper that he got from trash bins! Who would think to do such a thing!?
The kids that read this book to me gave it a very high 5. and I give it 4 big paws up. You must check it out!
This book lends itself to a discussion of the proper care and use of books. Some resources can be found here and here.
And here is a pdf file for a bookmark with rules on it!
Now you might want to head over to Susanna Hill’s blog — It’s Perfect Picture Book Friday! and there will be lots of great books and resources for you to check out!
LOL at ‘I did not do it’ sounds like a great book. My Sandy used to chew books too. I should get her reading too!
This is a great book! I think that Sandy would probably love for you to read it to her!
Rhythm, I could show you some books eaten by our bunny!!! Not just chewed – eaten!! This sounds like a fun book and I love the video clip too.
Oh! Those bunnies are worse than Labs! We’ve got some woodwork stripped by a bunny. ( We also have some woodwork stripped by a Lab). Maybe bunnies and Labs are very similar in nature. Hmmmm. and – that Mr Jeffers just cracks me up!
Rhythm, one of my kitties chewed his way through several pairs of my shoes *sigh*. You’re in good company. I am a big Jeffers’ fan. He lives here in Brooklyn and has had an exhibition here in NYC recently. This book sounds rather yummy!
Our cat likes to eat photographs. Cats are crazy. But then Labs have been known to munch on shoes as well. I wish that dogs could go to exhibitions. And that Mr Jeffers might come to Texas. He is a very funny man.
Oh, Rythm you are a sweet darling!
Thanks Ms Love! I like to hear those kinds of words!
‘Course you’d never correct my carelessness with your name above Rhythm x
hahaha! I should probably do a post on all the misinterpretations of my name! Any approximation works for me. It’s the words that follow that I pay attention to.
great review – and video too! so, do you think that if you’d eaten the pages (instead of the covers) you might be smarter? Or able to read better? Or would all those words just argue in your tummy and cause a great rumpus and indigestion?
That’s an interesting thought. We talked about that with the kids when we read the book and they all thought that they would be very sick if they ate a book. In the book, Henry starts out getting smart but then gets a big tummy ache. I have eaten some pages in my time. ( the Mom Person couldn’t get pictures of those!)They did not give me a tummy ache and I have gotten smarter over time. Soooo —- maybe if you do it slowly and give the words time to line up just right —
This is too cute. Who would have ever thought…. Great review! Kids will find this book very entertaining. Enjoyed the video with Jeffers.
This book is really cute! And so is Mr Jeffers! And the kids we read with thought it was all quite incredible! Thanks for your thoughts!
I love that video! I think I’d love this book too! 😀
I think you would Erik!
Thanks so much for providing the interesting info about how the book was written…what’s one man’s (or dog’s) trash is another one’s treasure.:)
How fun that part of the book is ‘bitten’ off…you are right….kids will love that.
I loved seeing picture of you enjoying the book…you have a wonderful Mom Person…I’m glad she reads to you often.:) Every mom should do that with her kids.:)
I do have a wonderful Mom Person! She is my sun and my moon. She reads to me A LOT! But even better — she takes me to school and the library so I can read with kids! They bring a whole different perspective to books and reading and life! I have a good job!
Oh, my kids have devoured books too … both literally and figuratively. We loved some of Jeffers’ other books, so we’ll have to check this one out.
I think book eating kids will certainly like this book!
Rhythm, Rhythm, Rhythm – I’m glad to see you’ve turned over a new leaf! If you’re ever in CO, I have a nice stuffed thing (can’t remember what it WAS!) reserved for visiting dogs! I think I’ll be picking this book from my library’s menu very soon!
Yes, I have matured and turned to more lady like activities — like gnawing tennis balls. I’ve never been to CO before. If I ever do, I’ll be sure and stop by to check out your thing! And I think you will really like this book!
I’ve got the book on hold!
lol.. this is a lovely review of a fun book. Buddy (dog) and Cindy (cat) who are not with me anymore never chewed books, they always had each other to chew on.. 🙂
Hahaha! Thanks for the nice comments. I’ll bet Buddy and Cindy were best buds!
The book reader was once the book chewer how ironic is that heehee
Indeed! I guess it did make me smarter!
I’m glad you learned what a nice collection you guys have now , I mean you are a dog that can read pretty impressive! :p
Your wonderful post made me think of this quote by Maurice Sendak:
“Once a little boy sent me a charming card with a little drawing on it. I loved it. I answer all my children’s letters — sometimes very hastily — but this one I lingered over. I sent him a card and I drew a picture of a Wild Thing on it. I wrote, “Dear Jim: I loved your card.” Then I got a letter back from his mother and she said, “Jim loved your card so much he ate it.” That to me was one of the highest compliments I’ve ever received. He didn’t care that it was an original Maurice Sendak drawing or anything. He saw it, he loved it, he ate it.”
Thanks for the post! I definitely need to read more Oliver Jeffers to my son. 🙂
Thanks for that quote! Mr Sendak is another of my favorites. He seems to be one strange fellow. I think that your son would like Mr Jeffers. Maybe enough to eat the book! Watch out!
Rhythm, thanks for telling me about this book! Four paws up? I’ll have to get a copy!
Your very welcome! It is an excellent one! I hope that you enjoy it as much as I did!
I’m a huge Oliver Jeffers fan, too! THE INCREDIBLE BOOK EATING BOY was funny (I laughed at the chewed-up page and the part about broccoli (Was it broccoli?), though my favourite favourites of his are still LOST AND FOUND and STUCK. So glad to meet a fellow Jeffers fan, Rhythm!
thanks for stopping by! It’s nice to meet you too! That Mr Jeffers just cracks me up!