T Is for Terrible
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T Is for Terrible

3.75 of 5 stars 3.75  ·  rating details  ·  161 ratings  ·  36 reviews
I am Tyrannosaurus Rex.
I am a dinosaur,
otherwise known as
a terrible lizard.



Tyrannosaurus rex is a terrible dinosaur; of this, everyone is certain. But is this dinosaur really so terrible? He IS very big and very hungry. True, he might even eat his neighbors for lunch. But from his point of view, he can’t help it. After all, he’s not a vegetarian . . .


T Is for Terrible is a...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published September 2nd 2008 by Square Fish (first published August 1st 2004)
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Community Reviews

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J
Aw, this was beautiful. The textures of the Tyrannosaurus' skin, and the repeating, intense, but delicate textures of the leaves and flowers were really amazing. A very harsh world is drawn in soft colors and with few hard edges.

The text is very simple, so it's easy for small kids to digest, and allows adults a chance to stop and slow down. The story is gentle, and sometimes the text and drawings are cute, but it's not really a sweet story: the Tyrannosaurus is alienated and sad because he destr...more
Marya
A Tyrannosaurus Rex asks why he is so terrible when he can't help things like "crushing little flowers when I step" or "growing so enormous and so enormously hungry". The innocent text is accompanied by similarly soft watercolors ("would I be so terrible if I were pink" is so adorable that my mother answered aloud "No" when she saw it). My little one even roars when we get to the page where he announces "But I am Tyrannosaurus Rex and I do not eat trees" and is shown to hungrily chase the other...more
Loren
I forgot about this one (for it sooo old) 2004 wink,wink! I rediscovered it because Erin is crazy about the mighty Trex. Jamil was thumbing thru a copy in my office and commented on how cool it is ..... he too liked the concept would a Trex be so terrible if it were PINK?! This is a refreshing dino books for it introduces an altered reality, "what if Trex wasn't so terrible?" It does have a theme of self acceptance and identity. My favorite line is "I cannot help that I step on little flowes whe...more
Michaela
This book is from the fantasy genre - it is told from the point of view a talking T-rex. I'd say it's geared for a younger audience, ages 3yrs. - Kindergarten but I think first graders would enjoy it too.

This is the story of a T-rex who does not "know why he is so terrible" but clearly feels that he is because of his diet and the fact that he steps on flowers. He thinks about ways to be not so terrible, like possibly being a different color or becoming a vegetarian. But, in the end he says, "I...more
Amy
This is *such* a sweet story! My niece and I love T is for Terrible! And we love the pictures! My niece reminded me of this story today after we read Fabian Escapes. After reading that book she said, "Amy, I think the person who wrote this also wrote T is for Terrible. The pictures look really similar." She's sure correct, and I'm so happy that she reminded me about T is for Terrible!
Danny
Cuddly dinosaur wonders why he is considered terrible for doing what he was built to do: Which is eat everyone in sight.

Is it serial killer apologia or a story of self-acceptance?

YOU DECIDE.
Drew Graham
(Maybe 4.5) Lil' Tyrannosaurus Rex is literally a terrible lizard (a.k.a. dinosaur), but he insists he's just misunderstood. He might be a carnivore, but he's not SO terrible.

When The Wife and I were first dating she picked this up at a bookstore because she loved it so. I finally took a few minutes to read it and thought it was funny and charming. The illustrations are great, and it made me laugh out loud a couple of times (I love children's books). As far as text goes, I'm pretty sure this rev...more
Meg McGregor
A wonderful story that invites children to learn more about the T-Rex and decide for themselves if it is a terrible lizard or not.

Wonderful illustrations.
Marissa Garcia
A T-Rex contemplates his terrible nature and wonders over why he must be that way. He had a mother too, and was a baby once. He can’t help that he steps on little flowers when he walks. He wonders if he would be less terrible if he were pink or blue colored. He can’t help that he doesn’t eat trees!

The misty, watercolored art by McCarty inspires both amusement and pity towards the T-Rex’s plight. This book gives children the opportunity to think about the shades of gray in characters, and help th...more
Jesse Lasarte
This is an amusing story about a ferocious dinosaur trying to make a case for his innocence. The ferocious dinosaur, a Tyrannosaurus Rex, doesn’t feel it’s fair to be labeled a “terrible lizard.” After all, it’s not his fault he’s not a vegetarian. Overall, this is a quality picture book. My one criticism is that the illustrations are not as detailed as some of his other illustrations. Usually, you can spot interesting asides in McCarty’s books. However, it hardly makes a difference to the books...more
John Sullivan
T is for Terrible is a wonderful book about a T-Rex who is misunderstood. It's not his fault he is a meat-eater, he says; if he could, he would be a vegetarian. McCarty does a great job of illustrating this book to supplement the text. The sentences are short and simple, so the pictures are important to the story. For a unit on dinosaurs, this book could be fun to read, but it also could be used for a vocabulary or comprehension lesson for younger elementary students. I will have this in my clas...more
Tricia
one of my favorite author/illustrators, mccarty captures much more in his titles than simple words and pictures. he creates a tone and feeling to his works. this title is no exception--t rex doesn't understand why he is so terrible...but he is. i love the page that says "if i could, i would be a vegetarian. but i am a tyrannosaurus rex, and i do not eat trees." mccarty is underrated in my opinion.
Caleb
A tyrannosaurus rex talks about how he is terrible and, while he laments it a bit, he realizes there's nothing he can do about it and accepts his terrible-ness. I don't think the title ties in very well to the story, but it's rather charming, and I enjoyed McCarty's unusual dinosaur designs and depictions--they really looked rather unique.
Beth Wood
I want to give this book a 5 for illustrations and a 2 for story. Are we supposed to feel sorry for the T Rex because he is a meat-eater? It's dangerous to assign human feelings to predators, even dead ones. I just don't get this book. May readers said it was "sweet". Ack! Sweet? He'll rip your head off if he's hungry!
Kelly
Illustrated by the author. Although it has really very beautiful illustrations, I find this book to be so sad. The final line is even, "I cannot help that I am so terrible." I would not use it for storytime and can't really think of an instance that I would want to use it.
Ubalstecha
This is a lovely book about accepting yourself for who you are. The main character of this book explains that it is not his fault he is terrible, that people judge him on how he looks and what he eats. Nice to include in a unit on acceptance.
Kathy Ellen Davis
I liked this book, to be able to see another side of T-Rex was nice.
It also made me sad.
I wanted him to change.
But he couldn't.

Haiku Review:

I don't mean to be
so terrible but I am
I wish I could change
Megan
Dinosaur wants to know why everyone thinks he's so terrible and how he can change. Great book for opening up discussion about judging others, or people who are born different.
Christine
Aug 17, 2012 Christine rated it 4 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Ages 3+
A Tyrannasaurus Rex is misunderstood and doesn't understand why. He tries to imagine if he would be so terrible if he were different colors. Beautifully illustrated.
Kim Foy
This is the story of a tyrannosaurus Rex who wants to be a vegetarian. He explains how he tries not to be so terrible, but he cannot help it.
Pedro
This one is up my alley. I laughed and laughed. It's a story about a T.Rex contemplating his place in the world. I get him.
Marie
Wanted to do this for story time, but in the end, he is terrible? So, I don't know, I have decided not to use it!
Amy
Wow. This book makes you go "ohhhhh!" in a whomp whomp kind of way for most of it. A touching read!
Leah
Cute, simple, nice illustrations with a touch of humour. Read in preschool storytime on Dinosaurs.
Emily
I love this one. It breaks my heart, but the kids in storytime think it's SO silly.
Rachel
As another reviewer has said, loved the artwork, but the ending was anticlimatic.
Emma (Miss Print)
I loved this one. Who else could make a Tyrannasaurus Rex so cute and sympathetic?
Morgan
T-rex explains how he feels about being "Terrible" and why he does what he does.
Rachel
It was cute, but I kept waiting for there to be a point to the story.
Jennifer
This was a cute book about a T-Rex who doesn't understand why no one likes him.
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202298
I was born in 1966 in Westport, Connecticut right in the middle of two older brothers and two younger sisters. We kept our mother busy while my father worked long hours at IBM. Most of my childhood was spent in my head. I was usually recreating a battle from World War II or running from dinosaurs in prehistoric times. To this day, I develop characters and environments based on worlds I first creat...more
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