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Leo the Late Bloomer

4.16  ·  Rating Details ·  8,580 Ratings  ·  463 Reviews
Leo isn't reading, or writing, or drawing, or even speaking, and his father is concerned. But Leo's mother isn't. She knows her son will do all those things, and more, when he's ready. 'Reassuring for other late bloomers, this book is illustrated with beguiling pictures.' -- Saturday Review.
Paperback, 32 pages
Published April 19th 1994 by HarperCollins (first published January 1st 1971)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Jun 06, 2016 Rossy rated it liked it
Shelves: children-s
I have mixed feelings.
I HATED the first page: "Leo couldn't do anything right", what's up with that for a start?!
But I liked the ending SO much, I could have shed a tear or two.
Jul 26, 2009 Aaron rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childhood-reads
Memories of childhood reads bubbling up in my mind. This one was a favorite. I must have checked it out at the library a bazillion times. I remember the kind librarian softly asking me: "Aaron, are you a late bloomer?"

I didn't know what to say back to her. But the book made me feel whole.
Joy Colclasure
Apr 22, 2012 Joy Colclasure rated it really liked it
This was my first time ever reading this book. It was pretty cute. I like that it can show children not to get discouraged if they cannot do something. If they keep trying, they will get it when they are ready. The illustrations in this book are colorful and detailed. I also liked how the mother tiger was so patient and knew that Leo would master the skills over time. I would have said I would read this to my class at the beggining of the year but I think the end of the year would be better. My ...more
Megan (ReadingRover)
I always loved these books as a child. The illustrations are bright and beautiful and they're simple to read.
This book is about Leo a young lion who hasn't bloomed yet. He's behind all the other animals and doesn't do all the things he should be at his age. His father is worried at first but his mother just keeps telling the father to wait and that a watched bloomer never blooms. Sure enough in his own time and at his own pace Leo one day blooms. He can read, write and speak just like all the o
Aug 11, 2008 ABC rated it it was ok
Recommends it for: kids who are slightly late bloomers
Shelves: younger-kids
This is kind of a weird book. Leo, a tiger, can't do what the others can do: write, read, eat neatly, talk. His mom says be patient. His dad is a little worried, but is convinced Leo is okay and he watches some tv. And guess what? Leo learns to write, read, eat neatly, and talk! Hallelujah!

My problem with this book is that it really targets a very specific audience (kids who are slightly behind their peers) and what's more, I don't think it is written for kids, but rather as reassurance for the
Brittany McCarty
Mar 28, 2016 Brittany McCarty rated it it was amazing
“Leo the Late Bloomer” by Robert Kraus
GR Level: I, Lexile Level: 250, Grade: 1, Publisher: HarperCollins, 1999, Genre: Picture Book, Children’s Fiction, Pages: 32
This story is about Leo who is a lion that has some troubles fitting into the jungle. Leo cannot write, draw, read or talk while all the rest of the animals in his class can. Leo’s dad has some trouble adjusting to Leo being a little behind his friends and watches Leo in hopes that he will bloom quick. Leo’s mother however believes that
Justin Ferrell
May 07, 2014 Justin Ferrell rated it really liked it
Picture Book, 1971

Leo is a young lion that is having trouble drawing, writing, and reading. His parents worry about him, but hope that he is just a late bloomer. Leo's dad wants to do all that he can to help, but he is told he will just have to let Leo be and everything will work out. He tries to let Leo grow and not hover over him too much. Leo continues to have trouble in his subjects, but then one day he just gets it. His reading, writing, and drawing get much better. His parents are so proud
Jan 17, 2012 Anne rated it really liked it
In “Leo the Late Bloomer” Leo the tiger is unable to do many of the things the other animals can do, such as read and write. As the title suggest Leo is a late bloomer and in the end is able to do all the things that the other animas could do, including speaking, as well as reading and writing. Although the lesson of the story may seem obvious that children shouldn’t worry about learning slower than others because they are late bloomers, it also seems to send a message to their parents. Leo’s fa ...more
Jose Valadez
Jan 18, 2015 Jose Valadez rated it really liked it
Robert Kraus’ picture book Leo the Late Bloomer, is about Leo a young lion who is falling behind because he yet does not understand how to read, write and draw. The book first shows how Leo struggles to stay with the class and watches others around him excel in all that he cannot do. Leos father who is worried that his son may not be a late bloomer but something else follows and watches Leo for signs of blooming. Then Leo begins to blossom near the end showing everyone how he was able to do ever ...more
Aug 31, 2014 Chantal rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Parents and Teachers
Leo the Late Bloomer (1994), by Robert Kraus with illustrations by Jose Aruego, is a memorable tale of a young learner’s delayed development, the frustration and disappointment that are often accompaniment, and the important role that caregivers can play by supporting and accepting each learner’s unique progression.

The story is set in a fantastical, yet improbable jungle, with lots of vines, flowers, and an occasional snow. The characters are comprised of personified animals commonly found in c
Karly Kovac
Aug 28, 2011 Karly Kovac rated it did not like it
I didn't think this book was that great. I have read a lot of children's books and I usually think they are cute and have a cute plot to them but I just thought this book was boring and didn't have a whole lot to it. It's about a tiger named Leo who is a late bloomer and can't do anything right. The dad is asking his mom what is wrong with him and she says that some kids are just late bloomers and to give him time. Then one day "LEO BLOOMED" and he could all of a sudden read and write and do eve ...more
Feb 03, 2016 Sylvester rated it really liked it
Shelves: animals, squirt, 2016
3* art
4* story

"Leo couldn't do anything right."

A perfect beginning to an encouraging book - both for Squirt AND for me.
Mar 07, 2017 Becky rated it it was amazing
First sentence: Leo couldn't do anything right. He couldn't read. He couldn't write. He couldn't draw. He was a sloppy eater. And, he never said a word.

Premise/plot: Much of Leo the Late Bloomer covers conversations between a mother and father as they discuss their late bloomer, Leo. The father worries that Leo will never, ever bloom. His mother is confident that Leo will bloom. Seasons come and go but Leo hasn't bloomed. Then one day, he does. And Leo's "first word" isn't a first word, but a s
Nov 02, 2016 J rated it really liked it
This was a good book about not being at the same level as one's peers right away in life. It makes the point that it's okay, and eventually one catches up. I just didn't really like the ending line.
Jan 19, 2016 Cristina rated it liked it
• The first book I chose was called Leo the Late Bloomer by Robert Kraus and pictures by Jose Aruego. I randomly chose this book from the list and told myself to stick with the first one I chose no matter how much I end up liking or disliking it. After reading through, my overall impression was it was a wonderful book with a meaning that sticks to me personally. I myself was a late bloomer growing up, so the title it self intrigued me. I know the old saying of “don’t judge a book by its cover” y ...more
Tamara GTC
A must read. It is a reminder for ourselves as teaching professionals and parents, our children will develop at different stages and times. We must wait for each individuals personal awakening. Children will be encouraged and enjoy this book as well as adults.
Shanteria Maddox
Oct 03, 2016 Shanteria Maddox rated it really liked it
Shelves: socio-emotional
I feel like this would be a great self esteem! There will be several kids you encounter that might quite not be up to par with the other kids and that's completely fine. Everyone develops and learns differently. This book can help children accept others for who they are and to not laugh at but help them out as much as they can.........
Jennifer Foeller
This was a childhood favorite of mine. I love the message in the book.

My daughter thought it was cute.

It's one of those books that you don't fully understand until parenthood when you're watching all those milestone lists and holding your breath..
Jun 02, 2012 Fjóla rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: 3 - 5 year olds, preschool storytime
I'm completely enthralled by this book. It's endearing, it is funny, and it is motivational and inspiring. I'm really having a hard time letting go of it, since I borrowed it at the library. I was first taken in by the illustrations which are splashing in color and humorously portray by facial expressions Leo's backwardness/awkwardness, father's anxiety/impatience and mother's gentle love and warm confidence in her offspring.

The story tells our children not to worry about not growing up fast eno
Kristin Gardner
I really liked this book. The only complaint I have is the first line of the book where it says "Leo could not do anything right." I do not think that is a positive message to be sending to children reading this that just because you can not do something just like another child their age, does not mean they are not doing something right. On the other hand, the book goes on to explain that Leo struggled with tasks that other kids could do, but eventually he could do them in his own time. Reading ...more
Sep 02, 2013 Felicia rated it really liked it
When I picked up "Leo the Late Bloomer" for the first time, I was overcome with questions. Why does he look so sad? What is he "late" for? How will all of the flower buds play into the story?

As it turns out, Leo was a late bloomer when it came to literacy. He didn't seem to learn to read and write as quickly as the other animals in the jungle. Throughout the book, Leo looks at the other animals with envy as they smile happily doing all of the things Leo isn't quite capable of doing yet. Seasons
Dec 29, 2013 Evan rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: kids-niños
This somewhat depressing children's book features an anti-hero named Leo who, as of the very first page, "can't do anything right." While his peers (an owl, elephant, snake, crocodile & bird) can read, write, draw, eat & talk correctly, he is a total hot mess, and his distressed lion-face shows it.

To make matters worse, he has over-protective helicopter parents who are constantly spying on him, their paws ready to pounce at any sign of 'blooming'. While Leo seems to be intent on lethargi
Sherrie Gallagher
Leo the Late Bloomer is about a baby tiger that is unable to read, write and draw. His other animal friends are able to do these things with ease. His father is worried that he is not growing and learning how to do things. His patient mother keeps reminding his father that he will learn those things in his own time.

When you read this book, you get a cute warm-hearted feeling because of the baby animals and then a feeling of sadness for Leo, the tiger. Seeing the baby animals almost makes you fe
Rhonda Lee
Sep 03, 2014 Rhonda Lee rated it really liked it
Leo is your average little lion! In his class he isn't all that outspoken. Leo tends to keep to himself more than others, even at home with his parents. Others, including his father, think of him as a late bloomer since he hasn't start to read, write, draw or be able to say a full sentence when he speaks. His father gets worried as the months and seasons pass but his mother stays patient. I say Leo is your average lion because it caught my attention that compared to the real world it is normal ...more
Leo self-concept is unique and sometime , common in diverse forms,
Good vocabulary and read aloud.
The illustrations are detailed, bright, and beautiful.
The pictures are simple to read and often funny
Different strokes for different folks - different learning style and pace.
Beatriz Gonzalez
Oct 06, 2013 Beatriz Gonzalez rated it really liked it
This was a very heartwarming story about a tiger who simply was not ready to grow up. He waited patiently and then he matured in the eyes of his parents. Children can learn a valuable lesson on waiting for their time to grow up. They should not rush to grow up because maybe they are not quite ready yet. I know some adults who are not "grown ups" yet; I know I am not. Since I do not have the wonderful responsibilities of paying bills, providing for myself, or living on my own, I am surely not gro ...more
Sep 13, 2011 Kitty rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
I was completely and totally won over by this one. The story is a pretty simplistic read for younger kids, and pretty straight foreword at that - Leo is a late bloomer, father is worried, mama is not. Then one day everything clicks and suddenly Leo is whizzing around doing all of the things he found hard before like reading, writing, and chewing with this mouth shut. But what really made this story stand out for me were Aruego's delightful illustrations. Leo's bewildered expression as he finds h ...more
Chiix Moses
Leo the Late Bloomer is a story about a lion who is developing a little bit slower than his peers. When I initially read this story, I thought it was wonderful. I liked it because it teaches children that just because someone can't do something that you can, doesn't mean that something is wrong with them. For this lesson, I still believe that it is a wonderful story. However, the story also brings a little worry to my mind in the way of giving parents false hope. From what I have learne
Aug 01, 2013 Marilyn rated it really liked it
When the story opens you find out that Leo cannot speak a word, read, write, draw or even eat properly. His father is worried and fears that something may be wrong with him. His peers can achieve all those goals so why can't Leo? Enter mom....she assures her hubby that all is well...that if they practice patience these things will come to Leo because he is a late bloomer. But dad can't let it go and observes Leo morning and night waiting for that big moment to arrive. Mom in her wisdom tells hub ...more
Sep 02, 2014 Macy added it
Leo is a young tiger who can't read, write, draw, eat, or talk like those around him because he has not bloomed yet. Leo's father becomes worried about how long it is taking for Leo to bloom. He begins watching Leo's every move just waiting for him to bloom. Leo's mother, who is the calming force throughout this story, tells Leo's father to have patience. Through the detailed facial expressions of the tigers is it easy to tell that Leo's father is still worried about him. Then Leo's mother agai ...more
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Robert Kraus was an American children's author, cartoonist and publisher. Founder and publisher of Windmill Books, author and illustrator of award-winning children's books, Kraus began as a cartoonist and cover artist for The New Yorker. []
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