Squids Will be Squids: Fresh Morals, Beastly Fables (Picture Puffin)
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating

Squids Will be Squids: Fresh Morals, Beastly Fables (Picture Puffin)

4.07 of 5 stars 4.07  ·  rating details  ·  1,443 ratings  ·  170 reviews
A collection of new and wacky fables with fresh morals, which are about all kinds of bossy, sneaky, funny and annoying people. A general moral offered by the book is, "If you are planning to write fables, don't forget to change people's names and avoid places with high cliffs".
Paperback, 48 pages
Published August 23rd 1999 by Puffin Books (first published 1998)
more details... edit details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about Squids Will be Squids, please sign up.

Be the first to ask a question about Squids Will be Squids

Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 2,107)
filter  |  sort: default (?)  |  rating details
Melissa Long
The book is set up in a vertical, or portrait, format, with one page consisting of the text and the other consisting of illustrations. However, every once in a while the images and text will be together in a double page spread. Neither the text nor the illustrations are restricted by boarders but have a full bleed on each page. A unique thing about the text in particular; however, is that at the end of each "mini story" on each page is a little enclosed text box that says "Moral" and then gives...more
Picture Book. Fun illustrations with sly humor and somewhat punny morals, modeled on Aesop's fables, where if you can't say something nice about someone, go ahead and say something mean but change their name to "mouse" or "horseshoe crab." My favorites were "Squids will be Squids," "Breakfast is the most important meal of the day," and "There are some things we don't talk about at the dinner table." Also the image of a shark eating a tuna fish sandwich.

Colorful full-page art and text featuring u...more
Ashley R.
Squids Will Be Squids is a very busy book! There is so much to look at and it is all divided up into specific sections. It is a children's book, but it is split up into moral lessons, kind of like chapters. This book has several stories in it that have the purpose of teaching common moral lessons and some not so common ones. At the end of each story, the targeted moral lesson is explained very clearly. The illustrations in this book are extremely bold. The color scheme in Squids Will Be Squids i...more
Katie Adee
Hilarious. Great art. Had me grinning the whole way through. The silliness is a perfect appeal to kids and the morals (Aesop fable stuff) are applicable to every day life.
Andrea Wilkinson
This is really funny--classic Jon Scieszka!
Apparently, to write fables, all you have to do is think of someone you don’t like, change them into an animal and add a moral. That’s exactly what happens in this book as the readers are taken through several animal tales including ‘Grasshopper Logic’, about a grasshopper who procrastinates on his homework, ‘Elephant and Mouse’, about an elephant who forgets to call home, ‘Straw and Matches’, about straw who decides not to play with matches, ‘Little Walrus’ who tells the truth about his mother...more
This book consists of several short and hilarious stories that lead to a moral. My favorite is Straw & Matches. It’s about Straw suggesting a fun activity and Matches making unfair rules. The moral of the story is don’t play with matches.

I give this book a four star rating. It is an enjoyable reading and has great illustrations to go with each of the stories.

Classroom Connection
Conduct a classroom discussion about fables. If necessary, define fables (a short narrative stor...more
The writing and illustration team that created "The Stinky Cheeseman and Other Fairly Stupid Tales" has teamed up several times in the past. Another of Jon Scieszka's and Lane Smith's amazing books for kids that adults are sure to enjoy is "Squids Will Be Squids: Fresh Morals, Beastly Fables." Full of animals and inanimate objects that are the subject of moral tales in the spirit of a twisted and skewed Aesop, everyone who reads this book will be laughing out loud.

Each fable is one or two pages...more
Jul 24, 2009 Shel added it
Shelves: picturebooks
Scieszka, J., & Smith, L. (1998). Squids Will Be Squids: Fresh morals, beastly tales. New York: Puffin Books.


A good break from or companion to Aesop's Fables. Squids Will Be Squids shares 18 silly fables that manage to be both relatable to kids and incorporate far-fetched ideas to amuse. The moral accompanying each story manages to be just the right amount of ridiculous to get kids laughing out loud. Issues explored including saving a huge history project to the last minutes, deali...more
This is one of my favorite books to read for a class visit to the library. Jon Scieszka is a fantastic children's book author with lots of kid and adult appeal (The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales), as is Lane Smith (John, Paul, George & Ben, It's a Book), so this collection of "fables" is truly a snarky delight. According to Scieszka, "If you can't say something nice about someone, change the guy's name to Donkey or Squid." Basically,...more
To tell a story about a known associate, but to substitute an animalistic series of characters for the role of the tale's human counterparts, is what author Jon Scieszka associates with the recounting of a “fable.” Henceforth, one is to assume that the eighteen fables presented herein are based on actual events. This basic assumption leads to the greater enjoyment of each.

Take, for instance, the “beastly fable” regarding “Grasshopper Logic.” The moppet grasshopper, as is his wont, procrastinates...more
G (galen)
fun illustrations. and weird funny little fables with off the wall morals. I just got finished reading this one to my son for bed time. I thought it would be over his head but he got a kick out of it. especially the one about horseshoe crab and blowfish.

A Sample:

Deer, Mouse, Rabbit and Squid sat on the steps trying to decide what to do.
"Let's go see a movie" said Deer. "Great" said Mouse. "Great" said Rabbit. "There's nothing good on," said Squid.

"Let's play frisbee in the park," said Mouse.
Bethany Bennett
Squids Will Be Squids was HIGHlarious. Literally I felt like I was high reading it. It pretty much tells you at the beginning of the book that its making fun of real people. I think that's awesome. Part of me thinks that this book wouldn't be good to read with kids because it is so off the walls bizarre. But then the other part of me is thinking you know what with the right person reading I think kids would get a kick out of this. I mean it's teaching life lessons that everyone should know but i...more
Scieszka points out that fables are ways to gossip about people without getting in trouble because you change their names. This book is filled with clever new fables about beasts with important morals like, "There are plenty of things to say to calm a hopping mad Grasshopper mom. 'I don't know' is not one of them." and "If you are an ant and are going to dump your best friend for a new one, you should know that Echidna is another name for Spiny Anteater."

Why I started this book: I was checking b...more
Another fine read by Jon Scieszka (author of "The Stinky Cheese Man and Other Fairly Stupid Tales", "The True Story of the Three Little Pigs" and "Math Curse") that will surly get the attention of any reader with a sharp (read weird) mind. A take off from the fables of Aesop (who was thrown to his death off a cliff), you meet Elephant, Squid, Ant, Echidna, Walrus, Slug, Straw, Matches, Rock, Paper & Scissors, even BeefSnakStik, among many others. Their stories/fables are told, and each has a...more
After giving the Big Bad Wolf his say and covering the Gingerbread man in stinky cheese, Scieszka and Smith have now flipped Aesop on his head. Similar to The Stinky Cheese Man, this book presents a series of brief stories which only loosely resemble Aesop's original fables. Each piece contains a clearly identified moral (it labels it "moral" with brackets and a different font). In "Frog's New Shoes", for instance, Frog watches a TV commercial for new skateboard shoes, runs out to buy them, and...more
"Squids Will Be Squids" is a follow up to Jon Scieszka's and Lane Smith's most popular books "The Stinky Cheese Man" and "The True Story of the Three Little Pigs." In this book, there are many fables talking about morals in the modern world such as a fable about how a young grasshopper makes his mother angry by waiting until the last minute to complete a huge assignment and a fable about a young walrus who tells her friend Whale a bit too much about what her mother is doing out of town.

"Squids W...more
Edward Creter
This book has fables almost like Aesop--without the charm and plus more heavyhandedness than a kid would want OR need. The tales are funny but preachy in a way, so giving this one a 3 star review seems fair, but too kind. Try the original Aesop instead--it should still be in libraries.
This book is a picture book where each page goes with each other. Instead, each page is a little story with a lesson to be learned from it. However, they are written life fables, where names are changed or in this case people turn into animals. One of the stories in the book was about an elephant and a mosquito that were hanging out. They both lost track of time, and when elephant finally saw the clock he noticed that he was past curfew. He mentioned that he should call his parents so they didn’...more
*Queen Diva*
I can't stand passive aggressiveness...but I actually love the passive aggressive quality of this book, which is weird I know, but I think coming from Jon Scieszka and Lane Smith... the passive aggressive-ness is meant to be funny.

I LOVED the fable "The Duckbilled Platypus vs. BeefSnakStik". Oh my Ra, I died laughing!!
Brad Boyd
Squids Will Be Squids, a picture book written by Jon Scieszka and illustrated by Lane Smith, is presented in almost an extreme portrait fashion; it is much taller than it is wide. The book is a compilation of several mini stories. The first thing I noticed about the book is the text style. Every "fable" has a "moral" at the bottom of the page. The context of the actual stories is fairly plain, but has larger print than normal. The text of the morals is a more gothic print, and is a different col...more
Andrew Foster
Grade Level: Kindergarten to 6th

Awesome book! The fables were hilarious and really taught good lessons. Children will love this book. It teaches great lessons that can easily be transferred into real life situations and create a great deal of discussion.

A teacher can use this to have children write a fable of two animals or objects that teaches a lesson in a fun and interesting way. This would also be a great way to tie in Aesop's fables into a lesson by showing the similarities of the two. Allo...more
Great job as usual by Sciesczka and Smith. My kids liked the recurring elephant fable, but weren't crazy about the others.
We picked this up at the library not long ago and my boys think it is hilarious.
Adrienne Montgomerie
This book makes me giggle every time. My 7yo doesn't know what a moral is, but he does know that the stories are silly, crazy, and whacky.

I even refer to this book in my work: editing textbooks and teacher guides. Sometimes I counsel authors that they can't ask students to do xyz assignment because it's like asking them to "rewrite the Greek tragedies as broadway plays, write the music, sew the costumes, and design the sets."

Also valuable: the lesson about not always telling the truth. Especiall...more
Emily Brown
This was such a funny collection of stories that the author says Aesop might have written if he were still alive. Great for a school-age library storytime. All the stories are great for school age kids because they've probably heard most of the boring moral lessons from stoies, but these are a twist on the traditional morals. One example is "You should always tell the truth. But if your mom is out having the hair taken off her lip, you might want to forget a few of the details." Also all the fab...more
funny morals.
Kayla Skeans
I thought this book was fun with all the different characters that took your focus.
We, as regular beings, try to stay enthusiastic in the face of limited options, but squids it turns out, will be squids. This lavishly illustrated twist on Aesop's wisdom is so hysterical and campy that it is bound to become a classic on its own merits. My personal favorite involves a very self-involved slug who is ultimately, and not so unfortunately, squished underneath a steamroller as a reward for her inattention to anything un-sluggish. I love, love, love it!
When wacky and classy collide we get Lane Smith's illustrations. The characters are so fun, and the morals are so hilariously useless. Aesop was so bossy, who needs morals anyway! I could read this book everyday. And even though squid looks more like an octopus, I still love her in all of her negative charm. I also find fruit loops slightly less appetizing now... But that's not enough to make Squids Will be Squids lose its place as my of my favorite book of all time.
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 70 71 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »
  • John, Paul, George & Ben
  • Frankenstein Makes a Sandwich
  • Big Plans
  • Little Red: A Fizzingly Good Yarn
  • The Scrambled States of America
  • Edward and the Pirates
  • The Mysteries of Harris Burdick
  • A Day with Wilbur Robinson
  • Spider and the Fly
  • The Secret Knowledge of Grown-ups
  • Tomas and the Library Lady
  • The Three Little Javelinas
  • Bigfoot Cinderrrrrella
  • Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?
  • Never Take a Shark to the Dentist: (and Other Things Not to Do)
  • Alphabet City
  • Somebody Loves You, Mr. Hatch
  • Petite Rouge: A Cajun Red Riding Hood
Jon Scieszka is a writer and teacher. He lives in Brooklyn, New York, with his wife and two children. Occasionally he has been known to howl at the full moon. --from the dust jacket of "The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs"

Jon Scieszka is also the author of the best-selling ALA Notable Book, The True Story of the Three Little Pigs, as well as Knights of the Kitchen Table, and The Not-So-Jolly Roger...more
More about Jon Scieszka...
The True Story of the 3 Little Pigs The Stinky Cheese Man: And Other Fairly Stupid Tales Math Curse The Frog Prince, Continued Knucklehead: Tall Tales and Almost True Stories of Growing up Scieszka

Share This Book