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Terrific

3.81 of 5 stars 3.81  ·  rating details  ·  299 ratings  ·  51 reviews
"Terrific," says Eugene, after winning an all-expenses-paid vacation in Bermuda. "I'll probably get a really nasty sunburn." Unfortunately, Eugene's luck is a lot worse than that. First, his cruise ship sinks, then he ends up stranded on a tiny island. But Eugene isn't alone. There's another castaway, a parrot with a busted wing, who tells him what there is to eat and drin ...more
Hardcover, 30 pages
Published September 1st 2005 by Michael Di Capua Books
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(showing 1-30 of 401)
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Elizabeth Sherry
This book would really grab the attention of older elementary children. This is mostly because of the sarcasm the book uses all the way though. At this age, children become more sarcastic and would find this book to be very funny. It would not appeal to younger elementary though, because they would not be able to understand the sarcasm and would be confused by the old mans language. The illustrations are very large and clear and show the old man's emotions very well, which for the most part is a ...more
Matthew
Eugene is a sourpuss and revels in the miserable possibilities of whatever life sends his way, which only seems a little unreasonable considering his rotten luck with his cruise. When he meets a parrot stranded on the island he washes up on though, he's found a resilient spirit that refuses to dwell on the negative and instead solves every problem he encounters, with Eugene to do the heavy lifting. Eugene doesn't really change his tune but the parrot doesn't take any notice.

It isn't until Eugene
...more
Kristi Maurer
Terrific is an entertaining book. Despite its predictability, I think children will love it. The book's main character is an elderly man that will cause many children to laugh. By the end of the book, he becomes a compassionate friend. It is a shorter book, with bold and colorful illustrations. It has both a plot and a theme. There is a great lesson for children (how a situation that seems negative can end positively). I would highly recommend this book for all ages. My seven year old daughter g ...more
Esti
This funny book about a pessimistic old man and a gregarious parrot will make both children and adults smile. Eugene, a grouchy fellow in a trench coat, wins an all-expenses-paid trip to Bermuda, but finds himself shipwrecked on a desert island (little to his surprise). With the help of a chatty parrot named Lenny, he builds a boat and is rescued, just as grouchy as before--until Lenny's friendship shakes him out of his habitual sarcasm.

Though at first glance the story may seem full of negativit
...more
Joshua Cummins
Protagonist Eugene's favorite phrase is "Terrific!", although he never actually means it. He has a negative outlook on everything. He wins an all-expenses-paid cruise to Bermuda and while most people's response would be very joyous and exciting, Eugene responds with "Terrific, I'll probably get a really nasty sunburn." On his way to Bermuda his ship runs into a terrible storm and crashes. Everyone is rescued but him. He washes up on a small deserted island. He then meets a parrot named Lenny who ...more
Amy Musser
Eugene is the lucky winner of a trip cruise to Bermuda, “Terrific, I’ll probably get a really nasty sunburn.” He doesn’t quite make it to Bermuda because his ship sinks and he’s the only person who is not rescued. He washes up on a tiny island that’s completely uninhibited, except for a talking parrot that is also stuck on the island because of a hurt wing. The parrot convinces Eugene to build a boat, “Terrific, I’m going to permanently damage my lower back.” Their adventures together continue a ...more
Ally Copper
Throughout the picture book “Terrific” by Jon Agee, main character Eugene wears a sour expression and has a pessimistic attitude to match. Eugene has both good luck (winning an all-expenses paid cruise to Bermuda) and bad luck (ending up stranded on an island when the cruise ship sinks), but no matter what his circumstance, his sour expression remains. A sarcastic “terrific” is his response to every occurrence. On the island, Eugene meets a parrot with a can-do attitude who helps Eugene escape t ...more
Sunny
My kindergartener picked up this book from school library himself. He liked it very much and didn't want to return it. I couldn't figure out why he liked it though.
Sean
Genre: Picture Book
Age Level: Grades 1-3; Emergent
World View: White, no specific class
Theme: Friendship
Literary Elements:
In the Classroom:
Illustrations: Won the "New York Times: Best Illustrations" award, for a great use of action and emotion portraying Eugene and Lenny's sarcasm and friendship though the book.
Eugene's terrific dream vacation turns sour when a string of sarcastically terrific events unfold. His luck changes though when he meets Lenny, Eugene's only friend in the book. Eugene's
...more
Mikey Golczynski
I'm loving Jon Agee right now. A great read aloud for young and older students alike.
Samantha Kent
Eugene won a cruise to Bermuda but he thought he would get a nasty sunburn then one day the ship ran into a nasty storm and he ended up on a tiny island. He thought that he would get eaten by cannibals. He meets a bird and they get off the island and back on the ship the bird is from when he gets back to land the bird decides he wants to go with him.

This book is a good example that everything has a good side even if you think that it is a bad thing. It teaches kids to look for the positive in ev
...more
Kathy Ellen Davis
What a fun book!
The main character says, "Terrific" then starts complaining, in every situation he's in, even when it's an awesome situation!

Throw in a talking bird and a desert island and you'll have a good fun time!

I like the illustrations in this book and how at every moment it feels like the book can go in any direction.
It feels unpredictable, but you trust that the story will resolve itself and you'll be satisfied at the end.

I can imagine that would be a tough line to toe!
Judy Lindow
Good book for shared reading as it's a larger book, with easy to see, colorful, comic-like crisp illustrations.

The final message is that making friends can make you happy. Also, that 'things aren't always as they appear to be', and that 'animals can be smart and friend worthy'. When reading to kids you may want make sure they understand that the main character is being sarcastic when he says "Terrific".

The letters are dark, large, and an easy to read font for early readers.

Amanda
This is a cute story about a pessimist who finds an unlikely friend. While it may not be easy for kids to understand, specifically toddlers, it's a good story anyway. I like the architectural drafting quality of the illustrations (and really dig the accurate and detailed sailboat diagram). Z Goes Home (also by Jon Agee) was more fun for my letter-crazed son, but this one we can come back to in a few years when he can better understand connotation.
Chuck
This book was wonderful a must read. This book is about a man named Eugene that never had a good outlook on life. He always sees the bad in everything. He wins a cruise and thinks of the sunburn and throughout the book he always sees the bad of everything. He meets a parrot that is helps him with plans to build a boat. They end up at the pier and in the end Lenny the parrot lands on his shoulder. Eugene looks and said Terrific
Cheryl
This is the story of Eugene, who wins a free cruise to Bermuda which turns out to be one disaster after another. He finally gets rescued from a tiny island with the help of a talking parrot. Given the number of awards this book won, I was a little disappointed.

Fantasy; 2005; ALA Notable Book for Children, Notable Books of the English Language Arts, Horn Book Fanfare, New York Times Best Illustrated
Emily Goodin
I hated this book! The old man is grumpy and there isn't a very obvious theme in it! The only themes I could really find were "opposites attract"-because the grumpy old man and the cheery parrot become good friends-and "self-conflict"-because the old man obviously has some internal reasons for his behavior! I don't think I would use it in classroom at all.
Alyson (Kid Lit Frenzy)
I liked this one but wondering who the real audience is?! Eugene is a bit pessimistic and gets stranded on a deserted island and meets Lenny a parrot. With Lenny's help, Eugene gets off the island. When Eugene gets rescued he tries to explain about Lenny and they don't believe him. The final ending wrap up is fun but still wondering who the audience is.
Jackie
Eugene is a curmudgeonly old man who has just won a trip to Bermuda. You WOULD think this was a good thing, but Eugene finds plenty of reasons why it isn't. All of his grumpiness lands him shipwrecked and on a deserted island in the company of one feisty parrot named Lenny. Lenny turned out to be just the best friend a man could want....Terrific!
Robin
Eugene is an eternal pessimist -- when he wins a cruise, he says "I'll probably get a really nasty sunburn." Turns out he is stranded on a desert island after a terrible storm, but fortunately there is a knowledgeable parrot to help him out. Really very funny, slightly droll story, and in the end, things do turn out to be terrific.
Libby
Jon Agee books tend to be hit-or-miss with me, and this one was a hit! A tall tale about a man whose numerous misfortunes (winning a trip to Bermuda, being shipwrecked, finding a talking parrot...) lead to a friendship with the above-mentioned parrot. The title comes from the man's (usually sarcastic) exclamation at each new development.
Patricia
This is a picture book with great illustrations. It's the story of Eugene, who wins a trip to Bermuda. "Terrific," is his reaction, "I'll probably get a sunburn." He doesn't but something worse happens. I read it to a K/1 class on Read Across America day and they liked it though not as much as I did.
Brandi S
This would have to be my least favorite book that I have read so far for my children's literature class. I can see how it could be used to teach students about inference and patterns; however, I just did not find Eugene's sarcasm that endearing!
Taylor Johnson
This was an okay book that would grap the attention of older elementary because of the sarcasm used through out. It was not a favorite but would be good to teach the value of having a positive attitude.
Lawrence
Dec 12, 2010 Lawrence added it
Recommends it for: Junior and intermediate teachers
Not many adolescents will sit still for picture books but they do for this one. Could be they can relate to the middle age cynic who gets washed up on a desert island and makes a new friend.
Sarah Stumphf
My 2 year old really enjoyed this book with me at bedtime. He was very interested in the boats and in the building of one. He asked a lot of questions throughout this book.
Mark Saltveit
Superb children's book. I love the grumpy Eugene -- like Up!, any kids' story that can make a crabby old guy the hero is a winner. Funny, well-drawn, and with a great ending.
Jessica P.
Jun 29, 2008 Jessica P. rated it 2 of 5 stars
Recommends it for: 1st, 2nd, 3rd graders
Shelves: kid-lit, animals, z2nd, z3rd, z1st
This is about a man who wins an all expense paid trip to Bermuda, but can't find anything to be happy about, until he meets a new friend in an unexpected place.
Shawn
Another charming Agee PB. We check out 20 or 30 picture books at a time from the library. I wish the ratio of Agee (and the like) to other stuff was a little higher.
Wendy
I like spending an hour at work on the kids floor... you can peruse a cute book like this while kicking people out of the library (time to go home, people...)
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