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A Squash and a Squeeze

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4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  2,189 Ratings  ·  84 Reviews
'A Squash and a Squeeze' is a rhyming fable that tells of a little old lady who thinks her home is too small. A wise man tells her to take in a succession of animals so that it really is a squash in the house!
Paperback, 32 pages
Published June 4th 2004 by MacMillan Children's Books (first published 1993)
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Nicole
Jul 26, 2012 Nicole rated it liked it
I thoroughly enjoyed this book by Julia Donaldson. The book tells a story of a women who does not feel satisfied with her home and feels that it is too small for her. She decides to ask a wise old man for advice on how she can make her house feel bigger. However ironically instead of advising her to remove things from the house he tells her to put all of her animals inside the house with her.

This is an enjoyable book which can help develop literacy skills such as rhyming and reading poetry. The
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Clouds
Dec 24, 2013 Clouds rated it really liked it
Have you ever peed on a cat's head? I have.

One crisp Autumn morning, I ambled through the bathroom door, still three-quarters asleep. Splashing some cold water onto a flannel, I sponged ineffectively at my face, and then tossed the wet rag on top of the toilet cistern. I flipped up the lid and began my leisurely morning pee.

My kitten-cat (what do you call a teenage kitten?), Cassie, came trotting into see me, mewing excitedly.

"Hey girl," I started to say.

She jumped up onto the toilet, not knowi
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Fatima
Sep 11, 2015 Fatima rated it it was amazing
One day a little old lady grumbles and grouses that her house is a squash and a squeeze, A wise old man hears the little old lady grumble and grouse. The wise old man has an idea, which includes: a hen, cow, pig and a goat.
A squash and a squeeze is another humorous story by Julia Donaldson that keeps both children and adult amuse till the end. The story is repetitive and is told in a rhyme format, which gives it its dynamism. The illustrations by Axel Scheffler is of an animated one and it capt
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Shelley
Sep 29, 2013 Shelley rated it really liked it
A wise old man heard a little old lady grumbling about her house being too small. After insisting that he helps her, the wise old man told the little old lady to take in her animals. However, the house became too much of a squash and a squeeze. It was not until she took all of the animals out again that she realised just how big her house was for one little old lady.

This is an enjoyable story to read to children. With the story being repetitive, it allows the children to join in with the parts
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Sara Grochowski
In this first book from Donaldson and Scheffler, the duo behind treasured stories like The Gruffalo and Room on the Broom, a little old lady bemoans the lack of space in her small house. Instructed by a wise man to invite a hen, a goat, a pig, and a cow inside, she gains a new perspective and learns a valuable lesson. Adapted from a classic folktale and only recently back in print, readers will find humor and wisdom within these pages.
Beverly
Another version of the Jewish folktale about the house that is too small until it is filled, and then unfilled, with all the farm animals.
Aliya Farooq
Sep 23, 2011 Aliya Farooq rated it really liked it
I came across this book in a school I visited today and because I loved the Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler combination for 'The Gruffalo', I decided to give it a go.

The story is about a lady who moans about her house being 'a squash and a squeeze' and asks a wise man for help. The wise man suggests that the lady takes a range of animals to her house one by one. So, first he tells her to take her chicken into the house, and she basically tells him that it was small for just her and now with
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Kate Mcevoy
Aug 30, 2013 Kate Mcevoy rated it really liked it
This is a very exciting and traditional story about an old woman who lives by herself but feels that her house is too small. Donaldson uses great descriptive words and illustrations throughout to create this story, the lady says that her house was a "squash and a squeeze".
The old lady seeks advice from a wise old man who tells her to move in her hen. The lady thinks this is a disaster as there is barely enough room for herself. She asks the wise old man for more advice and he tells her to move
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Tina Roberts
Oct 29, 2011 Tina Roberts rated it really liked it
‘A Squash and a Squeeze’ is another lovely story by the creators of ‘The Gruffalo’. It is about an old lady who lives all by herself but finds her house just too small; it’s “‘a squash and a squeeze”. She asks the advice of a wise old man who tells her to move in her hen. This is a disaster, as her house was “poky for one and it’s tiny for two”. Seeking the wise old man’s advice again, she is told to move in her goat, then her pig and finally her cow. When the old lady reaches the point of teari ...more
Neelam Khan
Nov 20, 2013 Neelam Khan rated it really liked it
A Squash And A Squeeze is yet another Julia Donaldson book which I really enjoy reading.
It tells the tale of an old woman, unhappy with the size of her home who takes her plea to a wise old man to help her please because her house is a 'squash and a squeeze.' Throughout the story, the wise old man tells the old woman to add one of the farm animals to her house, the old woman, deciding her house feels even more pokey, returns to the wise old man having him tell her to add yet another animal. Thi
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Laura Lee Denby
May 08, 2013 Laura Lee Denby rated it it was amazing
The winning team of Axel Scheffler and Julia Donaldson always write such wonderful books which children will ask for again and again. The illustrations are delightful throughout and the story is written in beautiful rhyme. There is also an accompanying CD available which is a nice addition, particularly for a change in the classroom.
This story tells the tale of a lady who lives in a small house. An old man hears her complain that there is not enough room and suggests she takes in her hen. The o
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Vaughan Davies
Oct 28, 2013 Vaughan Davies rated it really liked it
This story is about an old lady who lives on her own and is convinced that her house is too small. She asks a wise old man to help with her problem, and he suggests taking in her farmyard animals one by one, which obviously makes the problem worse. Then the old man tells her to take them all out, meaning she lived on her own again, which makes the house seem much bigger.
I think the book would a fun story-time read for children in Key Stage one. The ‘little old lady’ main character is someone wh
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Kathleen Whelan
Apr 30, 2012 Kathleen Whelan rated it really liked it
I read this book to a Year 1 class about 5 times in one week because they loved it so much.

It's the story of an old woman who constantly complains that her house is a squash and a squeeze and far too small for her to live in. She approaches an old man who suggests that she move her hen, then her goat, her pig and finally her cow into the house with her. She does as he says and she realises that her house is getting smaller and smaller and has less room. She goes to the old man for advice once m
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Sarah
Nov 10, 2012 Sarah rated it really liked it
The old woman in the story who constantly complains of her house being too small, is taught the value of appreciating what you have, in a rather unconventional manner, by a passing ‘wise old man’. Julia Donaldson uses rhyme to tell the story and the illustrations by Axel Scheffler are very comical.

This book can help children to develop literacy skills such as rhyming and is a good introduction to reading poetry. I used this with my year two class to discuss the words that rhymed and what made i
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Aoife
Oct 14, 2013 Aoife added it
This is an excellent book for children from one to five - and beyond. The rhyming story and the colourful artwork appeal to very young children from the start while slightly older children enjoy `reading' along. The story is inventive, with just the right level of repetition and it pulls off the rare feat of being entertaining to the adult reader as well as to their audience. Two delightful characters - a little old lady (essential grey hair in bun!) and a wise old man (long, curious white beard ...more
Bridie Atkinson
Jan 25, 2014 Bridie Atkinson rated it really liked it
This is an excellent book for children from one to five - and beyond. The rhyming story and the colourful artwork appeal to very young children from the start while slightly older children enjoy `reading' along. The story is inventive, with just the right level of repetition and it pulls off the rare feat of being entertaining to the adult reader as well as to their audience. Two delightful characters - a little old lady (essential grey hair in bun!) and a wise old man (long, curious white beard ...more
Zaid
Jul 21, 2011 Zaid rated it really liked it
My first review is a firm favourite in my household. This book is from the authors that gave us the Gruffalo; Monkey Puzzle and The Smartest Giant in Town, amongst others. It tells us the tale of an old lady who lived by herself, who grumbles that there’s not enough room in her house. She consults the ‘wise old man’ who advises her to bring in her farm animals one by one. Feeling more and more squashed and squeezed as the house fills up, imagine her relief, and new found space, when the wise old ...more
Jacinta Tarr
Apr 19, 2012 Jacinta Tarr rated it it was amazing
A beautifully illustrated children's novel and yet another superb example of rhyme to use with children of any age. Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler come together to bring this spectacular childrens' story about an old woman who complains that her house is too small and she asks a wise old man for help. Yet following his advice she still complains that the house is too small so the wise old man reverses his advice, showing the old woman that really her house is big enough as it is. A great boo ...more
Barbara
This reissued version of a picture book first published in 1993 in the United Kingdom proves that the story and its message have staying power. When a little old woman is dissatisfied with her small house, she asks a wise man for some advice, and he suggests that she bring in her farm animals, starting with a hen. She does so, and the place seems very crowded and her companions are unpleasant, to say the least. In desperation, she goes to the same wise man--I'm not sure that I would have since h ...more
Wise Fool
Feb 11, 2017 Wise Fool rated it it was amazing
Great kids book. The rhyme even has a lovely little story with a moral.
really love reading this with my daughter!
Enjoy.
Joella www.cinjoella.com
This is like an updated version of "It Could Always Be Worse." I am interested to see what kids think of it, but I liked it myself.
Charlotte Wilson
Feb 16, 2017 Charlotte Wilson rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another lovely read with the children.
Harriette Cooke
Sep 25, 2016 Harriette Cooke rated it it was amazing
I absolutely love this book about a little old lady who thinks her house is too small. Luckily for her, a wise old man has a plan using some farmyard animals to help her that her house is the perfect size after all.
The book has lovely illustrations which help to keep the children interested and watching. It is very repetitive and rhymes which makes it easy for the children to follow and has a great flow to it.
The use of farmyard animals is great in getting the children to interact by doing act
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Giorgos Georgiou
Jul 02, 2014 Giorgos Georgiou rated it it was amazing
A Squash and a Squeeze, written by Julia Donaldson and illustrated by Axel Scheffler, is a story about an old lady who decides that her house is not big enough. She asks an old wise man to help her and he encourages the lady to take in, one at a time several animals of different sizes. The old man says that she has to do that until her house is a squash and a squeeze and when she reaches that stage, the old wise man tells to remove he animals one by one. At this point the old wise man says to th ...more
Julie Spencer 4D
Nov 25, 2016 Julie Spencer 4D rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: A family Readership & U8s
As you now already know, I am a parent and a fan of the tales written by a 21st Century Writer,
Julia Donaldson.

Julia Donaldson shares her stories in lyrical/poetic form, or for the young reader to understand, they rhyme. The rhymes make the story extremely memorable and fun to read, for both parent and child. The illustrations are adorable, and enchanting when reading the book to your young family.

A Squash and a Squeeze shares a very obvious allegory, when a woman complains about the size of
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Zofia
Sep 27, 2016 Zofia rated it it was amazing
A squash and a squeeze is a really nice rhyming picture book for children. It is about an old lady who complains to a wise old man that her house is too small! The wise old man tells the old lady to take in a variety of different animals until her house really is a 'squash and a squeeze'. The old lady is getting more and more frustrated, finally the old man tells her to take the animals out of the house. The little old lady's house feels big and spacious again! I like the moral of the story that ...more
Nicole Bishop
Sep 15, 2013 Nicole Bishop rated it really liked it
A squash and a squeeze is a funny story about an old lady who complaines to a wise old man that there is not enough room in her house. The story continues with the wise old man suggesting that each day she should let a different animal inside her house to live. This of course leads to the animals causing mischief, and eventually the old lady realises that her house wasn't a squash and a squeeze at all.
I really like this book as it is amusing for young children, and rhymes throughout. The illustr
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Beth
Mar 01, 2016 Beth rated it it was ok
Shelves: disappointing
I don't see the 'hype' over Julia Donaldson - 2*

I have two children's authors who I just hate and that award goes to Michael Morpurgo and Julia Donaldson. I really don't understand the hype over both these authors. Julia Donaldson is so overrated and I honestly think that some teachers miss out on excellent children's literature in favour for the 'old classics'. To be honest, it annoys me...

'A Squash and a Squeeze' is one of Julia Donaldson's overused book. I do see the moral story behind and f
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A.Z. Green
Brilliant. I just love reading this to my 2 year old. She loves the pictures of all the animals and squeals when she sees them. We also do the squeeeeeeeeeze like that, with our shoulders hunched to our ears everytime I read it aloud. But she points at the old woman and says, "Mummy!" so not sure what to think about that!!!

The punchline is predictable but it doesn't draw away from just how fun it is. The mischief the animals get up to and the illustrations that capture it so perfectly are deligh
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Gary Masskin
When I heard that one of my favourite picture books teams (Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler) were re-telling one of my favourite Jewish folklore tales in their own style, I was very excited. Unfortunately I felt a little disappointed with the resulting book.

The rhyme feels a bit forced in places and the rhythm isn't up to Donaldson's usual standard. I liked the spin of having lots of farm animals in the house but they could have gone a lot further with the mayhem created... would love to see
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Growing up
I grew up in a tall Victorian London house with my parents, grandmother, aunt, uncle, younger sister Mary and cat Geoffrey (who was really a prince in disguise. Mary and I would argue about which of us would marry him).

Mary and I were always creating imaginary characters and mimicking real ones, and I used to write shows and choreograph ballets for us. A wind-up gramophone wafted out Cho
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More about Julia Donaldson...

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