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The Ugly Pumpkin
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The Ugly Pumpkin

4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  430 ratings  ·  79 reviews
No one wants to take home the Ugly Pumpkin. Sure, he doesn't look like any of the other pumpkins, but why does everyone have to tease him so much? The poor, lonely pumpkin goes in search of a place where he'll fit in - and finally discovers the truth about who he is and where he belongs.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published August 18th 2005 by Putnam Juvenile
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Oct 13, 2012 Kirk rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: People with identity confusion
Recommended to Kirk by: I suspect Satan planted a seed of insanity in my wife's head, for she's been bringing home a lot of books like these as of late . . .


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That about sums this one up, but I'll provide a rationale:

The Ugly Pumpkin is a (non) harrowing tale about a squash who thinks its a pumpkin trapped in the body of a squash. Nobody gives two shits about his plight, and he suffers abuse at the hands of an old crab apple tree. Nobody gives much of a shit about that, and you won't either. At least the author gave us a heaping pile to compensate for the apathy of the characters in the book. That's the redeeming factor.

In the end, the u
I love this book, I read it to my kids every Halloween and we keep it in our bin with all of our Halloween decorations, so it is a book that they look forward to reading all year when we pull out the Halloween stuff. After we read this book, my kids and I decided that when we go pick out pumpkins at the pumpkin patch, we always try to find the ugliest pumpkin we can find to buy and take home with us, because even the ugly pumpkins have a place in our home ;)
Life Between Coffee Spoons
I read this during a Thanksgiving-themed storytime and the kids seemed to like it. There wasn't much to foster interaction, but the pictures were interesting and kept their attention. There is also enough humor to keep kids amused. Some of it is a little darker, so it may not be for all audiences, but my group ranged from ages 1 to 11.

As for use during storytime, it was fairly easy to read aloud and at an angle. I was able to play up their confusion about why we were reading a book that seemed t
Chris Fox
(Books for Early Readers)

At first I didn't know what to expect with this book. It started with a pumpkin who was misshapen and didn't know who to hang out with, he just couldn't find the right group. Everyone he tried to hang out with or befriend started by giving him some hope, but ended up making fun of him for his odd shape. This continued for some pages and became somewhat redundant, struggling to get across what the theme was until the very end. The end of the book is what brought my enjoym
Kara Dean
An original twist on the ugly duckling story, not to mention a Thanksgiving book that manages to avoid turkeys.
Edward Creter
This cute story is a Halloween take on the Ugly Duckling tale of Hans Christian Andersen with a twist of squash! An ugly pumpkin wants to be with farm friends, which is admirable, but like the guy in the Good Samaritan tale, everyone passes him by...until the pumpkin ends up with the squash, falls for a female squash, and celebrates Thanksgiving, which, to be honest, is a better holiday for him than something which honors Vampires, Ghosts and Goblins. Even has a hidden message you must find to a ...more
Zinzan Zhao
i read this book because it looked appealing

this book fits under the category a picture book.

the ugly pumpkin is about a pumpkin that is really thin and is ridiculed by the other fatter pumpkins because he isnt fat like them. one day the ugly pumpkin decided to run away from his bullies during his escape he runs into some other people who also mock him for not being a fat pumpkin until he stops running and wanders into a garden which he finds other ugly pumpkins. thats when he realizes that he
Georgette Quinn
This is one of my favorite picture books. I have bought this book for several teachers over the years for their classroom libraries. This has a great message about everyone having a place they belong.
I read this book with our hibernation station even though it had nothing to do with hibernation. This theme fell in with the Thanksgiving break so I mainly chose this title to coordinate with that. I really liked it and I believe all ages will enjoy it.
This book was sweet and my students loved it!

This book was recommended to me by another teacher blogger who used it for a writing activity in her classroom. I decided to check it out and see if it was legit, and it was!

This was the story of an "ugly pumpkin" who waits and waits in the pumpkin patch for someone to pick him for Halloween. Instead of getting picked, he gets teased because of how ugly he is. So he leaves and ends up in a garden of squash. It's then that he declares, "Oh my gosh, I'm
The ugly pumpkin is so sad that no one picks him for Halloween... Until he realizes that's not his destiny at all! All is wrapped up in time for a Thanksgiving feast.
Kris at Book Wishes
This book was so cute, my children loved it and best of all it was about finding your path in life and fitting were you are accepted. My oldest son has autism so he loved that this "pumpkin" or so he thought starting out was so lonely he just wanted to have friends and belong. He wondered why he wasn't like the others and then he found out that there were others just like him and he was beautiful because he was a squash. My son could relate to this story in so many ways, recommend this book for ...more
I read this during a Thanksgiving-themed storytime and the kids seemed to like it. There wasn't much to foster interaction, but the pictures were interesting and kept their attention. There is also enough humor to keep kids amused. Some of it is a little darker, so it may not be for all audiences, but my group ranged from ages 1 to 11.

As for use during storytime, it was fairly easy to read aloud and at an angle. I was able to play up their confusion about why we were reading a book that seemed t
Cute book about a pumpkin who isn't really a pumpkin! :D More of a Thanksgiving read than Halloween!
A fun twist on the Ugly Duckling story that is told in rhyme! The pumpkin protagonist goes through a sad fall of being rejected by jack-o'-lantern carvers and autumn-leaf peepers, only to discover by Thanksgiving that he's not so ugly after all. My only gripe with this book is that the pumpkin looks very forlorn indeed in many illustrations, which might make some toddlers and preschoolers at storytime feel uneasy or upset. I cut out the verse about the pumpkin crying all alone. Otherwise, this i ...more
I thought this was going to be a Halloween book but it's actually for Thanksgiving (and ends by wishing you a Happy Thanksgiving).

Excerpt from the book:
"I am the ugly pumpkin,
as you can plainly see.
Of one hundred thousand pumpkins,
none are quite like me.

Since early in October
I've been waiting to get picked,
but each time things start looking up . . .
I end up getting tricked."
Christian Sinclair
Looking for more Halloween books, this one really stood out on the display at Barnes and Noble. I leafed through it quickly and found a charming story that at first seems quite depressing. There is a lot in this story I was able to talk to my (4.5yo) children about. They were talking about the story even later in the day, and how it wasn't nice to call people ugly.
This is a very fun rnd seasonal read, and I will incorporate it into Junebug's collection. However, the author makes a few assumptions about his readers. Junebug reads with under-priveledged kids who have little knowledge of the connection between pumpkins of Halloween and squash. So, a little more info between "I'm a squash" to "here's my story" would be beneficial.
Jackie "the Librarian"
Sep 10, 2008 Jackie "the Librarian" rated it 5 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: everyone wanting a fun fall book to share with kids
I love this hilarious veggie version of The Ugly Duckling! Poor Ugly Pumpkin, no one wants to take him home for Halloween. He suffers so cruelly in the cold fall weather.
Will he never find a place where he fits in? Some place where he will be appreciated for his unique shape? Because pumpkins are fat and round, and he IS a pumpkin. Right?
Jessica Bingham
This has been my favorite Halloween story to read to my 2 year olds. The no one wants to pick the ugly pumpkin for their Halloween Jack o' Lantern. He decides to set off to find someone who would want him. Along the way he meets other ugly pumpkins that look just like him. He discovers that he is not a pumpkin at all...he is a squash!!
This is a really good book to teach children about being yourself and keep trying to find who you are. It also would be a great way to talk to children about bullying. The story uses rhymes and cute pictures to tell the story of an ugly pumpkin who gets overlooked every Halloween until he finally finds a place where he belongs.
Lauren Fern
This is a perfect book to help students create their own identity and be proud of who they are! This story helps students to learn that there is a place for everyone in this world. This could be used to help build the community of the classroom by allowing the students to voice positive traits in one another.
I try not to give anything 5 stars, unless it was excellent beyond excellent so for me 4 stars is high billing. I liked this book for two reason, I like the rhymes, I also like the artwork, but most importantly I like the self esteem message. Also, there aren't many books about Thanksgiving and this is a good one!!
Dec 28, 2007 Gigi rated it 4 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: parents and young children to read together
Even though he was just over a year old, my son really liked this book and it was one that I actually did not mind reading to him over and over. It's clever with big bright pictures and has a bit of a surprise ending. (It did say "Oh my gosh!" a couple of times, which may not be ok with some parents.)
Robbie Bashore
One year I took on the task of finding a book to read for Thanksgiving at my church. Some members of our congregation had complained that the traditional book was too long and too "vegetarian." I ultimately chose this book for its message that we all have diffent gifts and different purposes in life.
Shereese Maynard
My children actually introduced this book to me in a strange "flip of the script". To my surprise, they'd all (4) read it and I'd never heard of it. I love this story and how perfect for this time of year? If you have kids, this is a definite winner but even if you don't have kids, read it.
Amanda Parker
This book is one of my favorites! So cute, the poor pumkin goes through all kinds trials before he realizes where he fits in- as a squash! This book is a cute twist on the fall holidays of both Halloween and Thanksgiving. I own this book myself and have bought it for many children I know.
Dec 20, 2013 Dolly rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a humorous tale about a misshapen pumpkin that nobody wants. I love that he discovers his true place and that he is perfect just as he is. The narrative is very entertaining to read aloud and the illustrations are colorful and cartoonish. It's a great book to read in the Fall.
The ugly pumpkin gets made fun of and never gets picked when people come to get pumpkins. In the end the ugly pumpkin finds out he is a squash and feels like he has a place to be now. This book is great to show that every one is different but everyone also has a place to be.
This is a great book! This ugly pumpkin has a hard time of it until he realizes he isn't a pumpkin at all...he is a squash!

This book celebrates Halloween and Thanksgiving (the middle sibling of holidays according to the author).

This is highly requested at my house!
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My name is dave horowitz. I grew up in Smithtown, New York in the 1970s. Instead of paying attention in school I drew pictures of my teachers. Then I went to a famous art college in Rhode Island and studied coloring.

In 1992 I graduated and went to Oregon to play drums and drink coffee. Then I moved to New York City and worked next door to the Twin Towers. Then I learned how to climb rocks and got
More about Dave Horowitz...
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“Omigosh—I'm a squash!” 22 likes
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