Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Arthur's Dream Boat” as Want to Read:
Arthur's Dream Boat
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Arthur's Dream Boat

3.54  ·  Rating Details  ·  164 Ratings  ·  48 Reviews
From the talented Polly Dunbar comes an imaginative adventure that will have children sailing away on their own flights of fancy.

One night, Arthur has an amazing dream about a pink and green boat with a striped mast and a beautiful figurehead. He can’t wait to tell his family about it! But when he tries, no one (not even the dog) is interested in listening. In fact, they d
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published February 28th 2012 by Candlewick
More Details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Arthur's Dream Boat, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Arthur's Dream Boat

Extra Yarn by Mac BarnettAnd Then It's Spring by Julie FoglianoGreen by Laura Vaccaro SeegerThe Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William JoyceThis is Not My Hat by Jon Klassen
2013 Mock Caldecott
89th out of 97 books — 241 voters
The Fantastic Flying Books of Mr. Morris Lessmore by William JoyceNot a Box by Antoinette PortisGoodnight, Goodnight, Construction Site by Sherri Duskey RinkerSpoon by Amy Krouse RosenthalLittle Owl's Night by Divya Srinivasan
Curious about it all...
17th out of 82 books — 5 voters

More lists with this book...

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 268)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  Rating Details
Mar 08, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
As I began reading, I was prepared to love this. The book itself is packaged beautifully. The illustrations are engaging and the story-line is creative--I especially like the boat on the little boys head that keeps growing with each added detail but it gets confusing and isn't clear if the dream is being embellished by his surroundings or if his surroundings are just emphasizing his dream. I also thought the newspapers mermaid image and the boat's figurehead were distracting and out of place for ...more
Vera Godley
Jul 26, 2012 Vera Godley rated it it was amazing
When you first pick up this children's picture book, you are immediately impressed with the soft, intuitively gentle art that is done using various mediums. The colors speak loudly of dreamy, amazing, childhood - blues, reds, greens basic browns and black but overtly soft.

When Arthur awakens, he has had a dream of a small boat it is green and pink and has a sail. No one listens when he tells of his amazing dream. He keeps on trying to gain their attention, but they are so busy and are not listen
Dec 12, 2011 Angela rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Polly Dunbar's illustrations are top notch. The story is a cummulitive story about bringing to life something from a dream.

Arthur dreams about a boat. In the morning when he tries to describe his "amazing" boat to his family, he is largely ignored. As he adds details the boat it comes to life upon his head until his larger than life dream becomes a floating family adventure.

(Review based on UK Edition)
Vicki Purbrick
Mar 03, 2016 Vicki Purbrick rated it it was amazing
Shelves: listofbetterment
This book is large in size, A4 with bleed pages throughout, and it is a great little story about a boy who had an amazing dream. Everybody has dreams so this is a story that all children can relate to. Arthur wakes from his dream and can't wait to tell his family, however nobody listens to him.

From the opening page Arthur has a small boat on his head, and as the reader turns each page it gets bigger, more flamboyant with much more colour. Written in third person narrative, the words are fairly
Mar 16, 2012 Elisabeth rated it really liked it
I'm a sucker for discover-for-yourself details in picture books. The simple text, sound effects and vibrant pictures should make this a success in storytime. I also like "message to adult" books that are still written on a kids' level.
Mar 13, 2012 Danielle rated it really liked it
*Full Review to Come*

Short and Sweet: Polly Dunbar can do no wrong. Her illustrations are gorgeous! Children will love following Arthur as his dreams come to life!
Connie Klever
Mar 13, 2012 Connie Klever rated it really liked it
Adorable story about a little boy who wants to tell his preoccupied family about his dream. Nice message to parents and caregivers about "stopping to smell the roses".
Mar 06, 2012 Rachel rated it liked it
Illustrations are soft and lovely, but the story is a little odd.
Erin Reilly-Sanders
Nov 28, 2012 Erin Reilly-Sanders rated it really liked it
This one would get an Erin's Award for Gorgeous Pictures. There's just something about opening a book and being completely struck by the quality of the illustrations. While this isn't quite as thrilling as Pinkney's The Lion and the Mouse, it's pretty close which means that it should be a Caldecott contender- too bad Dunbar is British! I would totally buy the back endpaper (the orangey red sun mirroring the softly rendered sleeping boy with washes of softly textured blue and green teal, if not o ...more
Gwen the Librarian
Apr 06, 2012 Gwen the Librarian rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
Last night, Arthur dreamt of a boat. As he goes around trying to get his family to listen to his dream, the boat in his memory (cleverly pictured on top of his head) takes on qualities of his family and their home - polka-dot sails match Mom's polka-dot dress, etc. As no one listens, the sea creeps up on Arthur and his family with the sound, "ssshhh, ssshhh" and sweeps everyone in, including Arthur, now safely in his boat. He does, of course, save them all. Then, on the endpapers, Arthur is asle ...more
Destinee Sutton
Apr 06, 2012 Destinee Sutton rated it really liked it
I love Polly Dunbar's picture books. This one comes at a very opportune time--we're gearing up for our Summer Reading Program and the 2012 theme will be "DREAM BIG...READ!"

No, that's not a weird boat-hat on the kid's head on the cover of the book. Arthur dreams of a boat, and his dream boat is shown in the illustrations right above his head.

This is somewhat reminiscent of last year's Blackout because we have a child trying to get the attention of his family, all of whom are too wrapped in thei
Love the illustrations in this. Love the questions for the reader...did Arthur really dream all those details? Or are they being added as he greats his family? Is the boat really on his head? The small white boat on his head when he wakes up turns pink-and-green when he sees his dog, in a green collar, yawn with his pink tongue sticking out. The striped mast is added when he comes across his brother's lamp... There are all sorts of other fishy things to notice too--the tentacle in his brother's ...more
Jul 30, 2012 Romelle rated it really liked it
This is a sweet bedtime book about a boy named Arthur who is trying to share his dream with his family. But no one is listening or is interested. They don't even notice his dream boat growing on his head until they all get swept away in Arthur's dream.

I'm sure readers will relate to a time when they wanted to share their dreams only to be told to deaf ears. This is a story that will inspire readers to imagine and dream big.

The illustrations are soft and sweet. The text are precise. It almost fe
Apr 12, 2015 Libby rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-book
The pictures really make this story. Arthur tries to tell his family about an amazing boat he dreamed about, but nobody is listening. Finally, he gets their attention so they can all sail away together.
Dunbar's tale is a subtlw reminder to pay attention to your children.
Feb 01, 2016 Aysia added it
I love to watch Arthur and I want to read about that
May 25, 2015 Bill rated it really liked it
It was short and well drawn: the perfect bedtime story.
Dec 01, 2012 Paula rated it really liked it
"One night, Arthur has an amazing dream about a pink-and-green boat with a striped mast and beautiful figurehead. He tries to tell his family about it when he wakes up, but no one (not even the dog!) is interested. In fact, they don't even notice the boat on his head, growing larger and larger by the minute! Soon, Arthur is bouncing along the waves in his very own dream boat. Maybe now his family will listen to him!"--Dust jacket.
Mar 09, 2012 Mary rated it liked it
Arthur has a dream he is trying to tell his family about but they aren't listening. His dream is about a boat and that boat is actually on his head when he wakes up. It gets bigger the more he tries to tell people about it until it is so big, they all climb in! Soft, full page illustrations illuminate the story for young children. Extra large print helps with the early literacy skill of print awareness.
Jan 20, 2013 Margie rated it really liked it
No one wants to listen to Arthur's dream about a boat until they notice the boat on his head (which keeps growing) is the boat of his dreams. This is a stunning combination of lyrical narrative and soft mixed media illustrations. Careful readers will see things in Arthur's home become a part of his dream or is his dream becoming part of their home?
Feb 09, 2013 Danielle rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Beautifully illustrated and much more than that.
I love that in this story is a boy who has something to share with his family but they don't listen. They don't listen so much and he wants to tell it so much that the something gets bigger and bigger and comes to life.
Rebecca Ann
Oct 18, 2012 Rebecca Ann rated it really liked it
Arthur has a dream about a boat, and when he tries to tell his family they won't listen. When arthur loses his patience, the dream becomes real, and he saves his family with his dream boat. I loved the artwork and how the pictures added to the story, but i found the ending confusing.
May 30, 2013 Lorna rated it liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
Arthur tries to share a magical dream, but no one is listening. Once they do though, they are in for a treat! For a similar, "reconnect, listen, and engage" message, I like this better than Cordell's Hello, Hello book.
Jul 15, 2013 Zulaika rated it really liked it
Shelves: readtojazlynn
My 5 year old thought it was too short. I believe the whole story is all a dream though the boy doesn't know it at first. I'm not sure I like that the boy is dreaming of his while family ignoring him.
The Styling Librarian
Jul 08, 2012 The Styling Librarian rated it really liked it
What a gorgeous book that could be read simply by the amazing illustrations alone. I loved the simplicity of a little boy trying to make sure people were listening to him!
Marina S
Apr 23, 2012 Marina S rated it really liked it
Shelves: t-l-306
A book with a lot of vivid descriptions. This one would be cool to read without showing the pictures and just having the students close their eyes and listen to the book.
Adrienne Furness
A sensitive exploration of a common family situation (NO ONE WILL LISTEN TO ME!) as well as a way to talk about dreams and where they come from. Dunbar's art is lovely as ever.
May 24, 2012 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
Gorgeous Story time book! Phenomenal illustrations, and great sound words for Children to mimic during story time. Wonderful book & I will definitely be using it soon!
Great Books
Apr 03, 2012 Great Books rated it really liked it
Shelves: birth-4
Arthur's dream comes to life adding new details with every turn of the page. Will his family finally pay attention to him and join in on the adventure?
reviewer 15
Mar 12, 2012 Maddypictures rated it really liked it
British author Dunbar delivers a gem in this imaginative story of a boy who dramatically reclaims the attention of his busy family with a fantastic dream boat.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • A Bus Called Heaven
  • One Special Day: A Story for Big Brothers and Sisters
  • Another Brother
  • Oliver
  • Limelight Larry
  • Brownie Groundhog and the February Fox
  • A House in the Woods
  • Gem
  • No Go Sleep!
  • Auntie Yang's Great Soybean Picnic
  • Too Tall Houses
  • Tell Me About Your Day Today
  • Oh No, George!
  • Mooshka: A Quilt Story
  • It's Monday, Mrs. Jolly Bones!
  • Red Wagon
  • The Quiet Place
  • The World Champion of Staying Awake

Goodreads is hiring!

If you like books and love to build cool products, we may be looking for you.
Learn more »
Polly Dunbar is the author-illustrator of many children’s books, including DOG BLUE, PENGUIN, and six stories featuring Tilly and Friends. She is also the illustrator of David Almond’s MY DAD'S A BIRDMAN. Polly Dunbar lives in Brighton, England.
More about Polly Dunbar...

Share This Book