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The Pout-Pout Fish (The Pout-Pout Fish)

4.29  ·  Rating Details ·  7,270 Ratings  ·  565 Reviews

Deep in the water,
Mr. Fish swims about
With his fish face stuck
In a permanent pout.

Can his pals cheer him up?
Will his pout ever end?
Is there something he can learn
From an unexpected friend?

Swim along with the pout-pout fish as he discovers that being glum and spreading "dreary wearies" isn't really his destiny. Bright ocean colors and playful rhy
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published March 18th 2008 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (first published 2008)
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(showing 1-30)
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Aug 29, 2011 Anne rated it really liked it
Shelves: young-children
The Pout-Pout Fish is a hauntingly realistic portrayal of one fish's journey through depression and self-loathing.


Much like what happens in real life, his well- meaning friends try to help him by giving him sage advice like, Turn that frown upside down.
But their words of wisdom go unheeded.


Ultimately he realizes that only the love of a good woman can lift him out of his sadness. It brought tears to my eyes when he realized that he was a Smooch-Smooch Fish.


Ok. Maybe not. But my little girl did t
Aug 19, 2015 Davis rated it did not like it
The Kiss-Kiss Fish needs to have a refresher course on consent before I read this book again.
Apr 13, 2015 Lee rated it it was amazing
So rhythmic it reads itself -- love the phrases ("a kaleidoscope of mope") and the smooching finale. The best of the bunch so far.
Kayla Edwards
Feb 16, 2016 Kayla Edwards rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-books
A cute little story about a fish with an ever-present pout and how everyone in his life tries to convince him to be happy. Not the biggest hit with my students, but a few were into it.
Aug 04, 2008 Lanica rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Parents of young kids, fish lovers, watercolor enthusiasts.
I have young twin boys who get a story every night, so we try to get a good selection from the library. This is one that has passed the twins test and will have to be purchased for our home library.

It's sing-songy and has a repeated refrain which the boys love, and the pictures are active enough that they are not always reaching to turn the page, they actually look at the pictures as we read.

It only gets four stars instead of five because the ending is a little weak.

The story is this: A Pout-Po
Sadia Mansoor
Jan 23, 2017 Sadia Mansoor rated it liked it
Shelves: children
The book was fine but it is no way a children's book because of the ending :/
Dec 09, 2008 Dolly rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is a fantastic book; a song that is catchy, with its repetitive lyrics and hilarious onomatopoeia as well as illustrations that are colorful and silly, yet still expressive. And we absolutely loved the ending. We really enjoyed reading this book - a perfect book for bedtime!

December 2015 update: I borrowed this book again from the library to share with our two-year-old niece during her visit with my brother-in-law just before Christmas. It has the same bouncy rhythm as Bear Snores On, and i
Apr 27, 2015 ItsAllAboutTheBooksChick rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Dec 18, 2014 Stacia added it
I've never read this book. I plan to add a random children's book to my feed for every book I edit. Often they aren't published in a timely manner (or ever in a manner that leads to them being in Goodreads) and I always read them a minimum of 2 times while editing so I should be able to count them towards my goal. Really, I should add 2 but I'll go with 1 at this point.

12/8 - SC E&S 132p
Aug 27, 2016 Tova rated it liked it
Normally, I wouldn't rate a book I read to someone else. This one was for my nephew Isaiah. Isaiah wasn't really paying it any attentions but I really enjoyed it. So, damn it I'm going to mark it to say I read it.
Brooklin Banks
"I'm a pout pout fish with a pout pout face spreading my dreary wereys all over the place"
I love little kid books i just do
Donna Davis
Dec 30, 2016 Donna Davis rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: anyone with a baby, toddler, or preschooler to shop for
It's a hard thing, buying board books (cardboard pages less likely to be ruined by tiny hands that might tear paper pages) online. I've finally got a grandchild, and obviously the thing a good Grammy buys at Christmas, is books. But I've been away from tiny people for over 15 years, and so once I bought him the good ones not already in my awesome kiddy collection, I was stumped. I saw that this one was popular, but we're only allowed to look at one or two pages on Amazon, and that makes it hard ...more
Paige Scott
Sep 10, 2016 Paige Scott rated it liked it
Shelves: book-summaries
1) This book has such a cute storyline about a fish that goes around the ocean and just pouts. All of the other creatures in the ocean tell him he needs to cheer up, but the Pout-Pout fish is just not having it, and tells them that is just the way he is and that he cannot help that he is a Pout-Pout fish. Eventually he swims into a different part of the ocean where the fish have never seen anything like him and thought he was beautiful, so the girl fish gave him a smooch. After that, the Pout-Po ...more
Erin Reilly-Sanders
Sep 28, 2010 Erin Reilly-Sanders rated it it was ok
Shelves: fiction, picturebook
The text is cute with slightly addictive rhyming stanzas pleasantly interrupted by a refrain of "Blub, Bluuuub, Bluuuuub." The message is nice, if a bit cheesy, but this is a book for kids, not for adults. The illustrations are rather unremarkable in style and feel rather ordinary. I am a bit confused as to why the illustrator has depicted the pout-pout fish's world with gravity but it does add to the humor and message, as the fish is always falling down. Using panels for the "Blub, Bluuuub, Blu ...more
Nov 10, 2014 Lexi rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
We heard this book at a story time. It has a good rhythm, a not perfect but acceptable rhyme, and it's funny. It's a cheesy message, sure, but I could tell that my two-year old was into the repetition and he and I both laughed as the little fish blubbed down, the Eeyore to his positive fishy friends. And then...

(view spoiler)

...and in one fell
Aug 25, 2012 Jonathan rated it liked it
This is a fun book to read using different voices for the various fish. This particular book became a favorite in my three-year-old classroom with them constantly asking me to read the "Pout-Pout Story" to them. They especially loved whenever it came time to read the catch-phrases "blub, bluuub, bluuuuub" and everyone said it together. The pictures are funny and use lots of colors making it a fun book to look at as well as read.

The teacher provides a "Pout-Pout hat" (a hat de
Cassandra Gelvin
Aug 25, 2016 Cassandra Gelvin rated it did not like it
Don't Read This To My Kids

This book sends absolutely the wrong message, in more ways than one. I hated it so much that I posted a video review of it on YouTube. You can find it on my channel, "Don't Read This To My Kids". Basically, the main character is upset, and the only thing his "friends" tell him is that he should smile for them, oblivious to the possibility that he might have a legitimate problem of some kind, or that feeling sad is even okay in this aquatic world. They don't want to deal
What a fun story about being happy and being able to be happy. A fun story for children of all ages - IT RHYMES! and what's not to love about reading out-loud in rhythm? Kids love it adults love it everyone will love this story. AND you will love the illustrations.

A hint about me - children's book must have good illustrations for me to really really like them.

Here are the first two stanza to entice you further;

Deep in the water
Where the fish hang out
Lives a glum gloomy swimmer
With an ever-pres
Jan 07, 2016 Jerzy rated it really liked it
So, here's the thing. My 1-year-old loves the rhyming patter and the Blub Bluuub Bluuuuuub. And we can treat it as a cute, well-illustrated story about a fish affected by the dispositional attribution fallacy.

If you imagine swapping the gender roles, it is CREEPY:

"Hey there, girl, why don't you give me a smile?"
"Uh, I'd really rather not."
"C'mon, cheer up, luv."
"Please stop pestering me."
[A stranger swoops in making unrequested, nonconsensual advances.]
"Oh, wow, now I am liberated! I'm gonna
Oct 22, 2008 Luann rated it really liked it
Perfect to teach children (and perhaps a few adults!) that they can CHOOSE to be happy. Perfect for reading aloud in a library storytime - with some repeated parts allowing for audience participation and also some wonderful vocabulary and fun rhyming words. The illustrations are also VERY fun, with a wide cast of underwater sea creatures. My favorite illustration shows the pout-pout fish just after being kissed looking directly out of the center of a two-page spread - and he's actually still ups ...more
Feb 11, 2010 Candielouhoo rated it really liked it
This is a great book for fun or for teaching a lesson on feelings!
In the beginning, the pout pout fish's friends come to see why he is so sad. As the story progresses the colors on the pages become less and less vibrant, the characters around him become less and less happy.
However, the Pout Pout fish discovers he doesn’t have to be sad so the vibrant colors return with a blast of excitement!
The story presents a wonderful opportunity for teaching children how their mood affects everyone around th
Jan 18, 2013 Sara rated it it was amazing
Shelves: preschool, fish, emotions
Yet another preschool-story-time-perfect book. The rhymey Dr. Seussian text teaches SO many awesome vocabulary words (we talked a lot about different words for "sad" and "in a bad mood" while reading), and the interactivity is awesome. It's great that kids can connect the length of the "blubs" to making the word sound longer. I love hearing a chorus of four-year-olds go, "BLUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUUB!!" And then adorable smoochey noises. Yes.
My sister and brother-in-law read this to their son and read it to all the boys when we were together recently and it is just a fun book. On top of that it has a great moral told in a fun way!! :) And increases vocabulary. Highly recommend.

2015 Popsugar Reading Challenge: A book you can finish in a day.
Kate Hoglund
Feb 14, 2016 Kate Hoglund rated it really liked it
I enjoyed this book, the repetitive nature of the book draws in the attention of young readers as well as guides them through the story. Illustrations in this book are beautiful and capturing. Details go along with the narrative well and reflect the elements of the story.
Nov 24, 2008 Susan rated it it was ok
Ok illustrations. Rhyme is cute, could work for a storytime. However nothing remarkable about this book. Some of the rhyming feels forced, esp. the part with the squid and the jellyfish. The ending is a bit of a let down.
*Review to Come*

Short and Sweet: Fantastic book! The audio is perfect for little readers wanting re-reads with busy parents who may not have time to read the book one hundred times a day. Everyone in our house loves it!
Al Gandy
Aug 31, 2014 Al Gandy rated it really liked it
A bouncing, dazzling insight into the importance of constructive decision making and the positive influence of those around us
Jun 09, 2011 Elizabeth rated it it was amazing
This is such a great picture book about turning around an attitude!! I LOVE IT!! Great rhyming and vocabulary, a natural flow and not forced.
Julia Stevens
SO cute and fun to read! I love adding voices and noises to this story. This story shows how love can brighten your day.
Jun 04, 2015 Karen rated it it was amazing
Shelves: jacob, ellie, mom, dad
This book is just so our Ellie. Whenever she gets an owe-ee we start quoting the book to her and it makes her smile every time.
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Deborah Diesen is the author of The Pout-Pout Fish, a rhyming children's picture book illustrated by Dan Hanna and published by Farrar Straus Giroux. Her book The Barefooted, Bad-Tempered Baby Brigade was published by Tricycle Press. She lives in Michigan. Visit her web site at and her blog at
More about Deborah Diesen...

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