Written by Dev Petty
Illustrated by Mike Boldt
Doubleday Books for Young Readers 2/10/2015
32 pages Ages 2—6
“Let me ask you something . . .
If you could be any animal in the world, what would it be?
Probably NOT a frog, right?
Exactly.” [inside jacket]
Frog reads a book about cats and decides there are better animals to be than a frog. Frog does not like living in a swamp, it’s too wet. Being a frog, it’s too slimy. And, eating bug sandwiches is, well, the worst. Ever. So what is a young frog to do when he doesn’t like to be wet, slimy, or eat bug sandwiches? He decides to be something else. Like a cat, for instance. Or maybe even better would be a rabbit. Frog can already hop, being a rabbit should be easy.
Dad patiently listens to his son, but at each turn tells the little frog he cannot be a cat, or a rabbit, or even an owl—though an owl is a wonderful thing to be—because he is a FROG. This simple fact does not stop Frog from wanting to be a different animal, until a neighbor drops by.
“Why so glum?’
“I don’t want to be a frog.”
“What do you want to be, then?”
“Something warm and cute.”
This neighbor than tells Frog a secret. He eats cats, and owls, and rabbits. The one thing he would never eat . . . a frog. Frog thinks eating cats, rabbits, and owls is terrible, and maybe it is, but the neighbor says,
“It’s who I am.”
I Don’t Want to Be a Frog is a delightful picture book by first time author Dev Petty. Frog doesn’t understand the value of being himself. He cannot see the good because he is too hung up on the bad. Dad’s logic—because you are a FROG—matters little to his son.
A frog becoming a cat? How crazy is that? Young children will think this is hilarious, especially when looking at Mike Boldt’s illustrations. Frog looks like any frog in the pond. Dad, he has blue glasses, lest we get the two confused. The sparse illustrations emphasis the text, which takes up a good portion of each spread. Frog smiles as he imagines being a rabbit, as a rabbit hops over his head. Dad looks exasperated, trying to get his son to understand basic nature.
You are who you are. Accept it. This sounds harsh, but Petty’s story is never harsh. I like the message of acceptance. I like the humor that never misses a beat. I like I Don’t Want to Be a Frog and so will kids. I Don’t Want to Be a Frog is a terrific book for teaching acceptance to young children, who will grin and giggle from beginning to end.
I DON’T WANT TO BE A FROG. Text copyright © 2015 by Dev Petty. Illustrations copyright © 2015 by Mike Boldt. Reproduce by permission of the publisher, Doubleday BYR, New York, NY.
Purchase I Don’t Want to Be a Frog at Amazon—Book Depository—IndieBound Books—iTunes Books—Random House Kids.
Learn more about I Don’t Want to Be a Frog HERE.
Find Activity Pages HERE.
Check out Frog’s Interview HERE!
Meet the author, Dev Petty, at her website: http://www.devpetty.com/
Meet the illustrator, Mike Boldt, at his website: http://mikeboldt.ca/
Find more books at the Doubleday BYR: http://penguinrandomhouse.ca/imprints/doubleday-books-young-readers
. . Doubleday BYR is an imprint of Random House Children’s Books.
Copyright © 2015 by Sue Morris/Kid Lit Reviews. All Rights Reserved
Full Disclosure: I Don’t Want to Be a Frog by Dev Petty & Mike Boldt, and received from Doubleday BYR (an imprint of Random House Children’s Books), is in exchange NOT for a positive review, but for an HONEST review. The opinions expressed are my own and no one else’s. I am disclosing this in accordance with the Federal Trade Commission’s 16 CFR, Part 255: “Guides Concerning the Use of Endorsements and Testimonials in Advertising.”
I DON’T WANT TO BE A FROG by Dev Petty. Illustrations © 2015 by Mike Boldt. Used by permission of Doubleday BYR.
This book sounds wonderful and fun, with an important message for kids. Love it!
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This is one of those perfect books about accepting and being happy with who you are. Brilliant. Love that the entire book is in dialogue…and successfully! 🙂
Great review! 🙂
Thank you. Great comment. 😆
After reading this review, I am much interested to share this with kids. The book is hilarious and the lesson is great for kids to have self acceptance of who they are and be proud of themselves.
I’m glad I could get your interest up about a really good debut picture book. I hope you enjoy it as much as I do. I bet the kids will adore Frog.
Now why would anyone want to be a cat? Ridiculous!
According to young Frog, “Cats . . . irreverent , they make the rules, they’re in charge. Cats have this awesome red dot to chases around. Who doesn’t want a red dot? Geniuses.” Cats are geniuses. Can’t argue with that, can you? 🙂
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