The Incredible Book Eating Boy
Author/Illustrator: Oliver Jeffers
Publisher: Penguin Philomel
The Incredible Book Eating Boy was a title that immediately caught my attention. I love books and I always want to read books about books. Imagine my delight when I found this gem by Oliver Jeffers. I was intrigued.
Henry is a boy who one day just took a bite of a book and liked it so much he started eating books. He found that the more he ate the smarter he got so he kept on eating them. Red ones are his favorite. Soon Henry is super smart but he’s also getting sick. Worse, his stomach and the knowledge he got from the books is getting all jumbled up and he’s making mistakes – big ones. What’s he going to do?
I loved it! The story was so funny. I just laughed and laughed and laughed all through it. I loved Henry and how he loved books. He loved them even more than I do. The illustrations were so clever and funny as well. I just couldn’t stop smiling through it. I loved the little bite taken out of the corner of the cover too. Very clever touch!
I loved it so much I couldn’t wait to share it with my grandchildren, Aiden and Jasmine. I had to have them over a day earlier than I usually do. I handed Jasmine, the four-year old the book solemnly and waited. I didn’t wait long. She looked at the cover and smiled. Then she turned it over and saw the bite and her eyebrows crinkled. “Grammy”, she said in her ooh you’re in trouble tone “who was bad and bit the book?”
Then I read it to them. Aiden kept laughing and pointing to different sections of the pages (he’s 18 months) and Jasmine laughed and laughed at the story and the drawings. At the end of the book she laughed and said, “Grammy, Henry was silly. Everyone knows you get smart by reading books, not eating them.” Smart girl. I asked if she liked it and she said, “I loved this book! May I take it home?” It lives at her house now and I’ll have to get another.
Bottom line? It’s quite wonderful.