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The Happy Hocky Family (The Happy Hocky Family)

4.27  ·  Rating Details  ·  470 Ratings  ·  85 Reviews
This is a book about the Hocky family. In this book you will read stories about them and tubas, airplanes, balloons, skateboards, birthdays, boats, chores, dishes, naps, ants, toys, and cousin Stinky.
Paperback, 64 pages
Published September 1st 1996 by Puffin (first published September 1st 1993)
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May 01, 2008 Richard rated it it was amazing
I read this book. Did you read this book? It made me very happy.
This book is so special, I just had to create a whole new shelf for it.

We passed through Niantic today, had lots of store credit to burn at the Book Barn, and two small boys eating too many free donuts (the small "chocolate" coated ones that taste like wax). It was time to go, but I spotted this, vaguely remembered reading it in the 90s and finding it funny, grabbed it and got us out of there. Later at home, with the boys asleep, I had the chance to look over my purchases more leisurely and rere
Monica Edinger
Apr 28, 2008 Monica Edinger rated it really liked it
Seems to me parody is most successful when the audience knows the object being parodied. My students know their early readers so this book is hilarious for them.
Jan 06, 2009 Kathy rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kid-stuff
"Grandma smells like flowers. Lots and lots of flowers."

"Toys? What is toys?"
Meet the Hocky Family! There are 6 of them in all - Mr, Mrs, Henry, Holly, Baby, and Newton. They are a pretty normal family with chores to do and trips to the zoo and toys to play with. And even when things go wrong in this family, everyone manages to stay happy!

I found this book oddly amusing, but I don't think I could ever read it to a child. The humor seems a little grown-up for most young children. They might find parts of it funny, but some parts are just too morbid or sophisticated to ent
Sep 12, 2008 Tess rated it it was amazing
This book changed the way I speak English.

Find it. Read it out loud to as many people as will let you. Take public transportation and read it to commuters.

It is my favorite kids book ever.
Jan 16, 2009 Jessica rated it it was amazing
this made me snort and have to cross my legs from not peeing laughing, maybe it was just the right moment- nope it was that funny.
May 25, 2014 Karen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I love this book so much, I can't believe I haven't reviewed it until now. Making up for that oversight right now.

I have owned this book since 1993, when I was unmarried and not even thinking about having kids or becoming a children's librarian. I bought several copies of this book and gave them out to my adult friends as gifts. About half of my friends thought the book was great; the other half just thought I was really weird.

I love every little vignette in this book, but my absolute favorite
Nov 16, 2008 Heika rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Heika by: Mandie
This is the funniest little kids book. I laugh so hard everytime I read it.
Jun 03, 2010 Annie rated it it was amazing
ok, so maybe this is the best book i've ever read.
Matt Anderson
Dec 27, 2014 Matt Anderson rated it it was amazing
Humorous. Contemplative. Perfect.

This book chronicles the various misadventures of a family as they try to come to terms with the challenges of everyday life. It also shows how these struggles can sometimes bring them closer together as a family, while at other times it places them at odds with each other.
May 12, 2015 Mary rated it really liked it
A very humorous parody of the Dick and Jane early readers. Well paced visual jokes/stories play well with Lane's flat illustrations and dead-pan text. "Skateboard" and "The Zoo" are especially appreciated by readers who enjoy slightly dark picture books.
Feb 26, 2015 Megan rated it it was amazing
Perfect book for Dad to read to the kidlets. Dads will love the sense of humor and might want to read this book to them every night, thus freeing up mom for chocolate and magazine time. Buy this book for dad!
Jul 06, 2014 Laura rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-aloud, children
This is one of my al time favorite kid's books! It is especially fun for the adult reader. I need to pick up a few more copies to give as gifts. It always makes me giggle!
Dichotomy Girl
I should know better by now then to think that I can read a Lane Smith book to my 4 year old and have it be totally appropriate, but I at least was quite amused.
Sep 08, 2015 Sara rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2015-reads
Not sure kids would really "get" the humor here, but as an adult who grew up with Dick and Jane, I found it hilarious.
Dec 21, 2014 Megan rated it liked it
What a delightfully odd book. Not a favorite, but it was fun and weird.
Jun 26, 2015 Rainey rated it really liked it
I have a book. Do you have a book? My book is awesome.
Aug 18, 2014 Dawn rated it it was amazing
Shelves: with-my-kids
So much fun. My kids loved it.
Sep 30, 2014 Ian rated it really liked it
A style that's as unique as it is, charming. Fun little read.
Jun 23, 2012 Beth rated it it was amazing

This is one of those books you just have to read to understand the experience. This story isn't necessarily a story, but more like a series of different vignettes on each page. Each vignette is either interactive in some way or asks kids to make some inferences or ask questions of what's going on in the scene. It's one of those books that teachers can read aloud and undoubtedly kids will be picking the book back up to dig deeper into the subtler aspects of the story and illustrations.
Amar Pai
Dec 18, 2013 Amar Pai rated it liked it
Shelves: kids-books
Repetitive, but half-way through I realized it's all jokes. They're not the funniest jokes in the world but they're pitched at adults more than kids, and I was in the right mood for it. Sample joke: kid is responsible for ants, they want 'air', kid opens the 'window' letting the ants out, ruins the new kitchen, which is presented as a learn-to-read type deal-- "SEE the new kitchen. SHINY. NEW. SEE it" etc etc with ants crawling everywhere. I guess you had to be there
Funny, but not as funny as I was led to believe. I had high expectations. It has some good moments. This is like Dick and Jane, but snarky.


Chores: Quiz #1
Today was Holly's day to do the laundry. See if you can match the pocket items before and after the dryer. [before items include a crayon, dime, penny, army figure, piece of candy, ticket, piece of gum] [after items include a penny, a dime, and several indistinct blackish blobs]
Sarah B.
Jul 14, 2014 Sarah B. rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: childrens
This is a sarcastic book in the style of Dick and Jane. The illustrations are lushly retro, and the story is quite clever. But young children will not understand the humour, so I wouldn't say it is appropriate to read aloud to a child, unless you're willing to stop and explain each joke. It's definitely aimed at adults, probably especially those who had to toil through Dick and Jane-style readers when they were young. Cute, but not worth it.
Jan 27, 2008 Janelle rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: everyone - especially if you need a good laugh
Recommended to Janelle by: the speaker at Mount Hermon's Ponderosa Camp
Shelves: children, humor
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Feb 28, 2010 Vicki rated it really liked it
Shelves: banyan-library
Kinda twisted humor for a children's picture book! I don't know whether children would get it; let's just say that I read it with a couple of parent volunteers in the school library and we were in stitches! It's a little "Dick and Jane" with a liberal dose of the real world. I guess you could say that it teaches you to have a positive attitude in the end.
Not what I expected, but I enjoyed the laughs. Text-wise, this could go for an early reader. That age may or may not get the humor, depending on if they take time to think of what they read as well as look at the illustrations. Enjoyable. I still think a good choice for "a family book" to have out for "Things You Love" storytime, even if I don't read it.
Carol Pardon
Jan 11, 2014 Carol Pardon rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
twisted and funny. my 2 favorite things! just my kind of kid book!
Aug 13, 2012 Tara rated it it was amazing
Not really for kids AND that's the best part! A hilariously wacky, sarcastic take on old fashioned primers. I bought this with the notion of reading it to my kids when they were old enough to appreciate it. Found it hiding on the bookshelf the other day. The 8th grader finds it as funny as I do! Joy!
May 10, 2008 Jeremiah rated it it was amazing
Shelves: kids-books
This may be the most bizzare and hilarious children't books I've ever read. My wonderful wife introduced it to me and we read it together on occasion just to laugh out loud. I should note that the reader has to be a little weird already or you'll probably dislike the book altogether.
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Smith was born in Tulsa, Oklahoma, but moved to Corona, California at a young age. He spent summers in Tulsa, however, and cites experiences there as inspirations for his work, saying that "[o]nce you've seen a 100-foot cement buffalo on top of a donut-stand (sic) in the middle of nowhere, you're never the same."

He studied art in college at the encouragement of his high school art teacher, helping
More about Lane Smith...

Other Books in the Series

The Happy Hocky Family (2 books)
  • The Happy Hocky Family Moves to the Country

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