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Jonathan and Martha
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Jonathan and Martha

3.39 of 5 stars 3.39  ·  rating details  ·  113 ratings  ·  28 reviews
Jonathan and Martha are two lonely worms that live on opposite sides of a tree. One day, a big juicy pear lands on the ground between them. Jonathan nibbles from the left, and Martha nibbles from the right - and soon they are caught in a tangle!
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published April 30th 2012 by Phaidon Press (first published February 27th 2012)
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Ever tried to write a picture book before? Blooming bloody hard work they are. Synthesizing a point down to as few words as possible without sacrificing story or character is akin to trying to cram a muffin into a mouse hole. It takes skill and talent, particularly if your subject matter is broad. I've recently come to the conclusion that if you're dealing with a very specific subject, like a baby train robber or a dog that wants to fly a rocket to the moon, that is far and away much easier to w ...more
I am a huge fan of Horacek's books but this one was just a little too strange for me to really like it. Tangling themselves read as vaguely sexual to myself and several others I handed it to without saying anything. Probably over the heads of the intended picture book audience but a little unsettling for adults. the bird eating the tails was a little gruesome and disturbing. Especially when it resulted in a happy ending. Generally, having body parts eaten wouldn't be considered a good thing...No ...more
Jennifer Kaap
It had great storytime potential... until a big bird comes and eats their tails. I found that a little jarring... and I think little kids would, too. But, parts of it are super cute. Two lonely worms get tangled up and can't separate, so they learn to share and do everything together. Until that bird thing. Then, they don't have to be together... but, they decide to get married and be together anyways.
This book is messed up!
Two lonely worms, Jonathan and Martha, meet over a big, juicy pear. When they become entangled together fighting over it, they have no choice but to share everything and work together. Until a bird ate their tails and they were separate again; however, they wanted to stay together and share. The illustrations are made in mixed media that incorporates collage in a style reminiscent to Eric Carle’s. The book also has an interesting design. Halfway through the book when the worms start to share thi ...more
I'd read this one in storytime only after talking about lizards, worms, starfish, yadda yadda, and explaining that sometimes animals give up parts of themselves to get away from predators and that they live and regrow these bits. With that context, the book is really sweet and a decent length for storytime, and it's easy to focus on the gorgeous, textured-looking illustrations. Without it, the story could unsettle children.
Marguarite Markley
Two worms end up literally stuck together after fighting. They learn to share and love each other. Even after they are physically separated from one another, they choose to get married and remain as one :) CUTE
Although the end results of the story is wonderful, I was a little disturbed over how it got there. Too much discussion between the reader and the listener would be necessary to explain. Love the illustrations.
I love that these two worms get in an actual physical fight, something many children's authors are hesitant to represent.
I loved the pop-up leaf and the pop-up cake. The watercolors were beautiful. The ending of the book was adorable.
Two earthworms become tangled together and learn the joys of sharing.
Jamey Crook

WHAT THE LIVING F?!?!?!?!?!?
A wormy love story.
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Jonathan and Martha are worms who meet in the middle of a pear that they've both been eating. After fighting (instead of sharing), their bodies become entwined until they are stuck together for good. They learn to share and enjoy each other's company - even after a bird untangles them by pecking off their tails. That part is a little jarring, but Jonathan and Martha are none the worse for wear. The illustrations are very reminiscent of Eric Carle's illustrations in The Very Hungry Caterpillar.
Very interesting and cute book. I was kind of disturbed by the tail pecking thing. But this could still easily be used in storytime if you paper clip that page together. It could just read that a big hungry bird flew into the garden and they were separated then.. And just leave out the page with the missing tails. It still makes sense and might be more appealing overall. Just a thought :)
This simple tale of friendship is perfect for story time and will appeal to toddler and preschool audiences. The book has heavy-weight, thick paper pages. The illustrations are reminiscent of Eric Carle's style, with lots of bright colors and simple designs. It also has a couple of lift-flap pages and a couple of pages with die-cut holes.
Jonathan & Martha start eating on either side of a pear and are surprised when they meet in the middle. Each wants the pear for himself or herself, and the bickering turns into a writhing knot that leaves them permanently attached. Well, not permanently....

Nice illustrations in the vein of Eric Carle, but there's not a lot to the story.
Zhexi Pan
a love story of worms. Not fan of the story beautiful illustrations though
Beth Wood
The story wasn't much, but the illustrations were neat and I liked the flaps and cutouts. I did really like it when the worms got tied together, but perhaps the image of getting their tails snipped off by a bird is too graphic for little ones.
Here's a cute and funny story about two worms who learn to share... and end up falling in love.
The textured collage is reminiscent of Eric Carle. This was a hit at storytime!
Sandy Brehl
An odd but interesting story with dramatic images in large scale. These two worms actually develop as characters in the course of this simple story.
I did like this book, but would have liked a little explanation in the story or at the end as to how worms live after what happens in the book.
Kartini Themom
Love it! Got me discussing about Love with my son, and marriage. We spun off and discussed about Families too. Perfect gift for newly weds, too!
It makes me wonder if illustrators should copyright their artistic styles?
relationships, love, birds, worms, friendship, sharing
A romantic picture book about worms. Yes.
Simple, and slightly absurd.
Laura added it
Dec 04, 2014
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Petr Horáček is the author-illustrator of LOOK OUT, SUZY GOOSE and SILLY SUZY GOOSE, as well as RUN, MOUSE, RUN!; BIRD, FLY HIGH; A NEW HOUSE FOR MOUSE; and STRAWBERRIES ARE RED. He lives in England.
More about Petr Horáček...
Butterfly Butterfly: A Book of Colors Silly Suzy Goose Look Out, Suzy Goose Puffin Peter My Elephant

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