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Beware of the Frog

3.84  ·  Rating Details ·  501 Ratings  ·  147 Reviews
With deliciously ugly villains and a gasp-inducing ending, this quirky tale of the unexpected will have readers croaking with laughter.

Sweet old Mrs. Collywobbles lives on the edge of a big, dark, scary wood, so it’s a good thing that she has a pet frog to protect her. Too bad for the Greedy Goblin, the Smelly Troll, and the Giant Hungry Ogre, who don’t take this little am
Hardcover, 48 pages
Published June 24th 2008 by Candlewick Press
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Oct 10, 2008 Walter rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: storytellers, people who like surprises, lovers of subversive children's literature
Recommended to Walter by: Valerie Lewis
One of my favorites for storytelling this year--it goes with me everywhere! The trick is to oversell the retro style and the contrast between the too-sweet, repetitive style of the book, better setting up the ridiculous, startling, and outrageous surprises.

I find it works best with 1st - 3rd grades.
A fabulous story about Mrs. Collywobbles who lives all alone at the edge of a dark forest. The only thing she has to protect her is her pet frog. When scary things show up at her house the frog gobbles up the intruders! Mrs. Collywobbles ask her pet frog how she can repay him for protecting her. The frog asks for a kiss. When Mrs. Collywobbles obliges she finds herself turned into a frog! She isn't pleased about that!
Jan 16, 2009 Molly rated it it was amazing
Ok my favorite picture book this month. I loved the little old lady and her security frog. I now want a frog to protect me! It is simply but funny and sweet. This was too funny and will be one I will pull out to put in peoples hands over and over. Ages 4+
Mar 27, 2015 orangerful rated it it was amazing
If your kids crack up at the Killer Rabbit sequence in Monty Python and the Holy Grail, than this book is comedy gold! I LOVED IT! We were all giggling. So sad that it appears to be out of print.
Jul 17, 2015 Angelina rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
This is one of my all-time favorite picture books because I did NOT see the ending coming and it still delights me every time I read it.
Sep 11, 2012 Tiffany rated it it was amazing
Shelves: school-books
Genre: PB17

A great picture book for older kids. This story starts out so sweet and simple, but as you get into the story you find surprise after surprise! This is a different story than readers are expecting when it starts, but the twists and turns are what make this story great! A perfect blend of sweet and funny all in 1 story. Great illustrations and the story written by William Bee is a page turner.

Three words to describe this book: shocking, fun, great
Crazy Uncle Ryan
Sep 18, 2009 Crazy Uncle Ryan rated it liked it
Recommended to Crazy Uncle Ryan by: Jenny
Shelves: little-kid-books
I got a chance to read this little book when I went over to a friend's house to drop them off some apples from one of our apple trees. I read it while trying to ignore their youngest son who was taking one bite out of each apple and throwing them down the window well. I thought this was a cute little book that was very unique and fun to read. I will probably look at frogs differently for a little while.
Jun 06, 2009 Tiffany rated it it was ok
weeeeeeeeeeiiiiiiiiirrrrrrddddd. I was drawn to the illustrations and they were cool but this story is odd and I have to admit that the ending shocked me. My son didn't seem to be bothered by it but for some reason I was. I kind of didn't like it. Too dark and weird for me. I read another review that said this one would be good to add to a collection of really bizarre stories and I agree. If you were doing a small study or unit on the bizarre, this book is for you.
Mar 07, 2009 Wanda rated it really liked it
Primary students love this colorful tale of little, timid Mrs. Collywobbles and her pet frog. The frog defends her from the denizens of the scary, dark wood. The children respond to the traditional repeating patterns that set up a surprise ending. The repetitious word phrases give a clue to the final twist. A fun, humorous read aloud for both reader and audience.
Jul 21, 2009 Tricia rated it it was amazing
Had to read this twice, back to back for the girls. Oh, how I wish I had the gumption to use this one at storytime! Mrs. Collywobbles has a pet frog who alleviates the threat of creatures that go bump in the forest...ending is hysterical! Loved it!
Dec 08, 2014 Bookslut rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kiddos
This was so great! It's too bad they designed such an inauspicious cover, because I never would have picked this up (even for free at the library). Luckily, my daughter has a good eye and snagged it. Very fun, very different.
Cass Mabbott
Jul 15, 2008 Cass Mabbott rated it it was amazing
Go read this book now. Jane just gave it to me to read. It is the best of our twisted storytime genre. Very very nice.
Nov 07, 2009 Kate rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks
Too funny!
Nov 02, 2016 Ellie rated it liked it
We have read Beware of the Frog by William Bee so many times this week, Squishy and I now have it memorized. I need to preface this review by saying something important; It is a very strange book. I am not attracted to it at all, but squishy loves it. If you look at the cover, you think “Oh! A cute book about a frog.” insert sweet happy face. We love frogs, right? -Nope! Again, I put my “adult think” away, and search for what Squishy is getting out of this book.
The illustrations are whimsical an
Oct 30, 2016 Diane rated it liked it
"The only thing protecting Mrs. Collywobbles from the horrible creatures that live in the big, dark, scary wood is ... her little pet frog."

The frog handles the Greedy Goblin, Smelly Troll, and the Giant Hungry Ogre. But who will handle the frog?
Bethany Sutherland
Beware of the Frog is a book about this frog who protects a little old lady from the dangerous of the world. The frog's way of getting rid of the people who come into the yard is by eating them. The little old lady then asked how she could thank him for all that he has done for her. A kiss would be enough and so she kissed him and turned into a frog. She did not like that so she ate him.

This book was a little weird for me. I was not expecting the book to be how it was and do not plan to read it
Jan 26, 2013 Michele rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Pictures: Let's get one thing straight. I chose this book. There's a certain feel to the illustrations that remind me of 'Rosie's Walk' and what I associate with my childhood. In a way some of the humour in the pictures also pay homage to Pat Hutchinson's book, but there are a lot more words in this book. Apart from the colour scheme the pictures and creatures really are William Bee's own. There is a lot of detail in each illustration, so that the non reading child can infer a lot from context ...more
Kristanne Duncan
Sep 20, 2012 Kristanne Duncan rated it it was ok
Beware of the Frog is definitely not one of my favorite children's books that I have read. When I first picked it up I was intrigued by the bright, bold illustrations, but I thought that the story fell short. This books is about a little old woman who lives on the edge of the "big, dark, scary wood." The only thing that protects her from straggling, dangerous strangers is her pet the frog. As the story moves along we meet some of these scary strangers who all try to get past the frog. Each time ...more
Roxanne Hsu Feldman
This would please the younger crowd in a storytelling program or at bedtime. I find, unfortunately, since there is not more/different things to look at except for the different bad things out of the wood, it is too repetitive -- text and illustrations. William Bee is apparently very skilled -- the end paper looks great, with a textile design look to it (actually the entire book looks like a design for fabric or wrapping paper.) I just wish that there was a little more variation on the theme.

I k
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Sep 02, 2008 Susan rated it did not like it
Shelves: picture-books-jp
I get a tad weary of children's books that appeal to adults more than children, or maybe I am just a tad weary of the adults who lay claim to bragging rights that their children (read - more clever than yours) only like these books and not the gentle swill that other children (read - your dim bulbs) settle for. There is room in kidslit for the gentle, the imaginative, and yes, the dark and edgy, and I love them all, but I do wish adults would stop trying to make everything cool and cutting edge ...more
Aug 23, 2013 Andrea rated it liked it
Shelves: kids-library
The first time we read this it scared Melanie a little and I was unhappy that I let her pick it as a bedtime story before I read it. But, the next morning she was talking about it and asking about it. All week she has wanted to read it every day. Today she took it to school for her first show-and-tell.

I still don't really like it. Especially the ending, which has no real relevance to the story and doesn't come across as a joke to kids who don't know the princess and frog story.

I do like talkin
Jun 05, 2014 Alexandra rated it really liked it
Shelves: favorites
This one skirts too-scary, and for some kids I think it would tip over the edge into so scary it's not fun. I have a really low threshold for spooky and I enjoyed it and got a chuckle out of the twist ending. I think I'll try this one for a story time because it's got so many potential voices (Mrs. Collywobbles, each of the three pests, the frog) and with some silly warbles it could be much more fun than it is vaguely threatening.

This is DEFINITELY one librarians/teachers should read for themse
I really like the artwork in this, which I didn't realize from the outside. It's very pretty and sweet, which doesn't really match the silly story, but it's nice to look at.

The story is weird. I thought it was a little entertaining, but honestly, my kiddos didn't laugh at it when it felt like they were supposed to. I don't think they disliked it, they just didn't laugh at it. I'd say they mostly thought it was okay.

I thought the frogs apparently changing size was a bit bizarre. And ultimately, I
Alexandria Hiam
A little like a folktale. Kind of a creepy little story with lots of scary characters (a goblin, an ogre, and a troll) who come to the home of a sweet little old lady, Mrs. Collywobble. Her pet frog protects her from all of these foes by eating them when they enter the property. Mrs. Collywobble offers her frog a kiss as a thank you for being her protector and gets turned into a sweet little old lady frog. She ends up eating the pet frog - gross! Illustrations have a sort of 70's feel because of ...more
Jul 25, 2008 jenny rated it did not like it
When I first read it, I found this book really disturbing. It's not that the tiny frog eats these giant creatures so much... I can see humor to that. It's just, sort of grotesque. The ending was especially disturbing for me. So no, I didn't really like it, though the illustrations were interesting, I really feel like they somehow added to the grotesqueness.

I guess I can say that it's not a typical picture book, and it is certainly unique - maybe we don't always have to have a perfect, pretty ha
Mar 14, 2016 A rated it it was ok
A little like a folktale. Kind of a creepy little story with lots of scary characters (a goblin, an ogre, and a troll) who come to the home of a sweet little old lady, Mrs. Collywobble. Her pet frog protects her from all of these foes by eating them when they enter the property. Mrs. Collywobble offers her frog a kiss as a thank you for being her protector and gets turned into a sweet little old lady frog. She ends up eating the pet frog - gross! Illustrations have a sort of 70's feel because of ...more
Jul 16, 2008 babyhippoface rated it it was ok

That's not to say that kids won't like it, because some of them most certainly will. Some kids are just into weird, and those kids are likely to hoot with laughter at this tale's twisted end.

This could fit nicely into a "tales of the bizarre" read-aloud session, especially for middle-schoolers, who might be at just the right age to not take it too seriously, and to think it's hilarious.
A great storytime choice for school-age--or maybe a lap-read, too. I can hear the monsters singing their ditties and the frog taking care of things. And I certainly didn't expect that ending! Kids will love it.

(And way to re-use the illustrations!)

6/8/15 Read in Fitness Hop 'N' Harmonies. I think it was the favorite of the 3 I read, especially the ending. The rest of the book they sat through. But that ending definitely surprised them.
Oct 30, 2015 Kathy rated it it was amazing
This is the sleeper hit of my K-8 school library. I've read it to kindergarteners all the way up to sixth graders and it gets a great reaction from everyone. I always have a few kids shout out at the end, "I LOVE that book!" Yes, it's a little weird, but do you really need another sweet, predictable picture book? I read a lot of books as a school librarian and the kids seem to like the not-so-nice ones the best. This one is funny and surprising and they love it!
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William Bee was born in London but now lives in the English countryside. In addition to writing children’s books, he races a vintage sports car, is an international skier, and when at home tends his lawns and meadows.
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