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That Quail, Robert

4.21  ·  Rating Details  ·  872 Ratings  ·  167 Reviews
The perennially bestselling and acclaimed classic of the little bird who preferred human companionship to other quail.
Paperback, 128 pages
Published August 3rd 1992 by William Morrow Paperbacks (first published 1966)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 1,714)
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Apr 11, 2016 Laurie rated it it was amazing
Shelves: animal-books
I do love reading animal stories, especially true accounts of real pets such as Robert, the quail. I've been hesitant to read this wonderful book since I was aware that quail don't have a long life span and it would probably be horribly painful to read of Robert's demise. But overall, this is an upbeat, joyous book that doesn't dwell upon the negative. I fell head over heels in love with Robert the quail.

A retired New England couple notice that a quail has built a nest in their large back yard a
Feb 19, 2014 GoldGato rated it really liked it
Recommended to GoldGato by: Goodreads general recommendations
This is a sweet story and one that can be enjoyed by all members of a family. The narrative of the birth and upbringing of this personable little quail reminds us that, contrary to everything we believe, humans are not the center of the universe. There are other creatures who have as much empathy and love as we do, perhaps more.

Abandoned by its mother, Robert (who is a she) is rescued by a couple with a big heart and they are rewarded with a bird who creates her own guidelines and preferences, f
May 16, 2013 Gale rated it liked it
Shelves: non-fiction
"Five Ounces of Fluff--a Ton of PERSONality!"

Who would have thought that from an abandoned quail's egg so much personality and affection would hatch out? Yet that is precisely what happened on Cape Cod back in 1962, as chronicled with love and honesty by the author. What happens when the human world becomes a substitute for Nature? Is the orphaned wild creature better off with its own kind, or with an adoptive family of a different species? Readers must judge for themselves in this charming tal
Aug 01, 2011 Cathy rated it really liked it
I needed to reconnect with my quail-loving self after they nibbled my spaghetti squash plant to death.
“The [telephone repairman] stayed several minutes after the work was done just enjoying Robert, shaking his head in disbelief . . . It was a never-ending source of interest to watch people’s reactions to Robert. Of the hundreds who called on him, only perhaps three or four failed to respond to the marvel of this friendly, bouncy, affectionate and sociable little bird – a member of a species noted for timidity and shyness.”

“That Quail, Robert,” is a delightfully unique true story - a heartwarmin
Dec 08, 2012 Angela rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
A very simplistic memoir of the quirks of an unusual family friend. Robert the quail has a very large personality, which is odd as quail are normally very reclusive and shy birds. I think it is the mystery of the quail that makes this such a fun book to read.
Very quick read, the language is easy and pleasant, the chapters are well laid out and nothing ends with cliffhangers, and the actual page count is quite small. And of course, Robert herself is a very amusing little character!
Really a good
Nov 05, 2013 Vicky rated it it was amazing
I loved it! Very different. If you're an animal lover give it a try.
Feb 17, 2015 Kirsti rated it really liked it
Shelves: nonfiction, 2015
Short yet charming biography of an abandoned wild quail who was rescued by people and came to like living with them. This is an odd thing to say about a bird, but Robert really had a delightful personality. The part about the broccoli tantrum made me laugh out loud.
Jul 11, 2012 Nancy rated it it was amazing
My mother and I both read this book not long after it was published in 1966 and we both loved it. After just having read it again, I sill love it. What a wonderful fun and loving story. Robert was a quail (a bobwhite) that hatched from an egg that the "adoptive parents" found after the quail mother had left with the other 8 or 10 chicks that had already hatched. The humans were surprised when their egg hatched. What a very special bird Robert was! Robert became as famous in the 1960s as the libr ...more
May 07, 2016 Christine rated it it was amazing
Oh, Robert, your story brought me lots of smiles and warm fuzzies. Great story for any animal lovers out there!
Snoon Mcwilliams
this lady was really into the quail
Oct 04, 2011 Linda rated it it was amazing
What a delightful read. I read it on a relaxing Sunday afternoon. A Cape Cod couple "adopt" a baby quail, who lives with them for quite some time and becomes quite a celebrity. A true story written by their neighbor and quail sitter. Two other books that tell of unusual animals "adoptions" which I enjoyed are The Good, Good Pig, by Sy Montgomery, and Wesley, the Owl, by Stacey O'Brien.
May 05, 2009 Miriam-Lea rated it really liked it
This was a sweet story and probably the reason I have quail now. There is a button quail at the pet shop near my home that chooses guinea pigs for companions. These little animals are too cute!
Jun 03, 2014 C. rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is first-hand insight about a retired couple in Orleans, Cape Code (Massachusetts, USA). These memoirs were lovingly recorded by Margaret A. Stanger. She babysat ‘Robert’, fielded inquiries, and appeared on television. Tommy & Mildred Kienzle, cherishing wildlife, chose country woods over beachfront property. The doctor observed Robert’s Mother nesting in June. On July 10, 1962 he saw the Mother and Father leading twelve fluffy siblings from their driveway. Hearing that abandoned nests ...more
Really sweet. I didn't expect to like this much, you know, even though I am a birdy person, because I am not real into books about animals and nature and stuff. I like being out in nature,, and being with birdies, but that's not the same as readin' about them. (Well, maybe that's not true, 'cause anybody who follows my reviews knows the last book I fell in love with featured lots of nature and some birds.)

This one's about a quail chick that gets adopted and raised by a retired doctor and his wif
Feb 05, 2016 Joycelyn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: cole
This a book my third grade teacher read to my class. I was looking online for it and another 3rd grade favorite, Bristle Face by Zachary Ball, when I found a copy being closed out by my local library. Now my 11 year old son has read it and loved it just as much as I did nearly 30 years ago.
Nov 11, 2010 Andrew rated it really liked it
A cute little book on a family that finds an abandoned quail egg -- which then hatches and produces Robert. To their surprise, Robert's really a Roberta, which they discover after she lays her own first egg.

The story is about the personality of the bird, which fully adapts to living around humans. There's only one scant mention of Konrad Lorenz but the book would have benefited from more. For example, one of the mysteries to the author is why did Robert like shoes? Lorenz's work on imprinting, w
Joe Rodeck
May 16, 2016 Joe Rodeck rated it liked it
As animal stories go, the difference here is the remarkable fame achieved by this quail, who became a regular tourist attraction at Cape Cod.

Mild, easy reading. I'd recommended for old fashioned, naturalists, or very young readers.
Mar 11, 2011 Beth rated it really liked it
This is a true story of a delightful quail who comes to live with a family on Cape Cod and touches the hearts of hundreds of people. It begins when a mature couple, the Kienzles of Cape Cod, are brought an egg from an abandoned quail nest which, much to their surprise, hatches. Assuming he was a male (just one of the surprises SHE provides, Robert is given free reign of the house where she proceeds to follows her people around like a dog or cat and displays what can only be described as affectio ...more
Nov 30, 2014 Deborah rated it really liked it
A short, sweet story of a baby quail that grew up and warmed the hearts of the people around it.
A.K. Turner
Mar 12, 2014 A.K. Turner rated it liked it
I found this book cute and quaint. Throughout, I kept thinking that I should recommend it to my grandmother. There's nothing shocking about the book (even the shocker isn't shocking), and there's only one possible outcome. It was enjoyable along the way, though I periodically found myself a tiny bit annoyed by everyone's devotion to the quail, sort of like a parent who won't shut up about their adorable child who just peed on your living room rug. Again, it's short and cute, and probably a must- ...more
Feb 04, 2015 Jane added it
Recommends it for: Anyone who enjoys reading true stories about birds and animals in general
Recommended to Jane by: Steve
Robert, the Quail is a delightful story. Though the 1966 version is a little disappointing read in that it's not entirely grammatically written. It's about a quail who became part of the family of a retired couple.

He would run to the door to greet visitors. They realized later that he was a she, after she laid an egg one day for the first and last time.

She had a chance to return to the outdoors. Once she went out onto the snow lined path, took a few steps then turned around and headed back int
May 14, 2013 Kristi rated it it was amazing
If you like animals and even birds, you will love this sweet short story. Robert was found in the backyard and hatched by the couple that found him. Robert imprinted on them and loved people, but feared birds.
Rebecca McNutt
May 02, 2015 Rebecca McNutt rated it it was amazing
This little book is a wonderful animal story for all ages; it was well-written, funny and interesting, and Robert (the quail) was a loveable character, it was easy to get wrapped up in his antics.
Mar 29, 2011 Carissa rated it it was amazing
Shelves: memoirs, animals
A quick read, adorable and uplifting. Made me want a quail, that's for sure. Great for anyone who loves animals or wants to learn about how smart and interesting they really are (even quail!)
Margaret Stanger’s neighbors found an abandoned quail egg in their garden. After bringing it inside, they noticed it moving, so they incubated it and soon a bright-eyed, baby quail hatched out, whom they called “Robert.” Robert was delightfully outgoing right from the start and touched the lives and hearts of everyone who met him. He was also a she, which the family learned after Robert laid her first egg. Robert truly made herself part of her human family and was nothing like her shy and timid ...more
Mimi Fintel
Jul 21, 2015 Mimi Fintel rated it it was amazing
This little non-fiction book is just wonderful! It tells the story of how Dr. Thomas Kienzle and his wife found an abandoned quail egg and brought it home and set it on the kitchen counter. Amazingly the egg hatched! Dr. Kienzle and his wife didn't expect the tiny little bird to survive but survive it did! In fact, it thrived! They named the little bird Robert. Robert had a mind of his own and refused to ever be set free into the wild. This book is so charming with the many adventures of Robert ...more
Nick  Allison
May 15, 2016 Nick Allison rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I absolutely fell in love with Robert. I did not find it 'shocking' that someone was caring for and loving a quail as it seems readers in the 60's did. After all, Stranger admits to the fact that people were just beginning to accept pets as true members of the family in those years. I was a little shocked, however, to hear that Robert was eating cake so frequently. Currently, the value of this story is that it simply tells heart warming tales of love shared between two social species. Having rea ...more
Namitha Varma
Mar 16, 2016 Namitha Varma rated it it was amazing
I choked up so many times while reading. Such a heart-warming portrayal of a little quail.
Kerstin Lampert
May 24, 2015 Kerstin Lampert rated it it was amazing
I picked this up in The Cabin at Quail Crossing a VRBO place near Yosemite....while vacationing there.
Believe it or not, we had many quail around this cabin, so while I was reading this classic; I also saw them....maybe one is named "Robert"!
Delightful story bringing the reader up close and personal with a remarkable little bird who adopts the family who adopt her. (Robert is a she, as they find out after naming her).

I'd recommend this for older children.
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