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The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories

4.14  ·  Rating Details  ·  21,286 Ratings  ·  1,340 Reviews
From breathtaking stop-action animation to bittersweet modern fairy tales, filmmaker Tim Burton has become known for his unique visual brilliance – witty and macabre at once. Now he gives birth to a cast of gruesomely sympathetic children – misunderstood outcasts who struggle to find love and belonging in their cruel, cruel worlds. His lovingly lurid illustrations evoke bo ...more
Hardcover, 115 pages
Published October 22nd 1997 by Rob Weisbach Books (first published 1993)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Nov 03, 2013 Tina rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: owned-books
This is me--a huge Tim Burton fan (or so I thought):

One day, while carelessly browsing the Internets, I came across a book that I had no idea existed. I couldn't believe my eyes and felt especially stupid when realization hit me: I must have been living under a rock in a God-forsaken place, as never before had I heard of this book:

Of course, as soon as I realized that I had to have this book, another realization hit bullseye: remember that God-forsaken place, the one where I lived under a rock?
Mar 05, 2014 Melki rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry, disturbing
Reading this tiny tome was sort of like taking a prolonged vacation on The Island of Really, Really Misfit Toys. The natives are strange but friendly. They take some getting used to, but after a while, you'll want to hug them...BUT be careful - many of them have sharp objects sticking out of their bellies.


The Boy with Nails in His Eyes

The Boy with Nails in His Eyes
put up his aluminum tree.
It looked pretty strange
because he couldn't see.

The above is a pretty good example of what's in this book
sweet jane
Jan 17, 2016 sweet jane rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Ο κόσμος του Τιμ Μπάρτον είναι τρομακτικά γοητευτικός. Ποτέ άλλοτε το αλλόκοτο, το διαφορετικό, δεν είχε τόσο γλυκιά υπόσταση. Ήρωες με κεφάλι στρειδιού και σώμα κρεβατιού έχουν μεγαλύτερη καρδιά και από άνθρωπο. Πραγματικά υπέροχο βιβλιαράκι!
Oct 25, 2014 Ariel rated it really liked it

I don't have much to say. It's a collection of short poems and accompanying doodles by Tim Burton. It's damned creepy, freaking depressing, laugh out loud funny, and utterly awesome.
Dec 09, 2015 Florencia rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: burton fans, dark humor lovers.
Recommended to Florencia by: me!
I am a fan of Burton's movies. So, I was kind of interested in his writings. It wasn't a big surprise to find out that the level of awesome weirdness was the same. The characteristic Burton mixture of darkness and uncomfortable tenderness.

I mean, he wrote some really freaky poems (technically, not that great, and that is a charming plus) but with such sweetness and sensibility that you feel touched. Well, most of the times, just sad. It is written in a way that seems to be funny, and for some p
Jul 07, 2013 Cecily rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: humour, poetry
A short collection of macabre poems, illustrated like a children's book, but aimed more at the YA market, and delightful for dark-thinking adults as well.

There are lots of gory things about eyes, stories of non-human children (toxic, half robot, half oyster etc) and a most inappropriate present from Santa.

Occasionally the rhythm doesn't quite work at the first attempt, but even so, it's great fun.

It is strongly reminiscent of Hilaire Belloc's "Cautionary Tales for Children" (http://www.goodre
از تیم برتونی که این بالا نوشتم میشه حدس زد که این یه کتاب متفاوته.
مجموعه ایه از داستان های خیلی کوتاه با تصویرهای فوق العاده جذاب و سوژه های عجیب غریب!

سوژه های این کتاب اغلب بچه هایی هستن که به نحوی غیر طبیعی هستن و به همین دلیل تنهان و طرد شده ن.
نویسنده با لحن بیخیال و بچگانه چیزایی میگه که در عین خنده دار و مسخره بودن، غم انگیزن. بر خلاف ظاهرش از نظر من این کتاب مناسب بچه ها نیست!
خیلی کتاب ظریف و دوست داشتنی ایه.
Jan 06, 2016 Kaitlin rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a collection of very very short stories which are all written in verse and have an accompanying illustration or illustrations. This whole book was written and illustrated by Tim Burton who is one of my favourite artists and I was very intrigued when I stumbled across this on Amazon. It's a very small book but it's a brilliant one and I have to say that it was better than I thought it would be.

This collection showcases some of Burton's weird character ideas and stories and whilst some sto
Apr 14, 2013 Ema rated it really liked it
I love Tim Burton's movies for their beautiful cinematography and sense of macabre with a pinch of dark humor.
His poetry is right up my alley, just like the stories of Edward Gorey (who is known to have influenced Burton).

Roy, the Toxic Boy

To those who knew him
-his friends-
we called him Roy.
To others he was known
as that horrible Toxic Boy.

He loved ammonia and asbestos,
and lots of cigarette smoke.
What he breathed in for air
would make other people choke!

His very favorite toy
was a can of aerosol
مدتيه كه متوجه شده ام خواهر زاده ي پنج ساله ام به كتاب علاقه داره و هر وقت كه يك كتاب كودك پر از عكس براش مي خرم، قبل از اينكه ببينمش خودم كتاب رو خيلي سريع مي خونم.بعضي وقت ها به خودم ميگم دنيارو چه ديدي شايد يك روز عضو گودريدز بشه و مثلا توي ريويوي اين كتاب بنويسه:"يادش بخير وقتي پنج سالم بود داييم اين كتاب رو برام خريد" و باد به غبغب بندازه كه از بچگي تيم برتون مي خونده
Mairéad (is exploring a floating city)
“Son, are you happy?
I don't mean to pry,
but do you dream of Heaven?
Have you ever wanted to die?”

4.5 stars because honestly it's just plain creepy and I want more!

As a Tim Burton fan myself, I never heard of this until my cousin, who's probably the BIGGEST Tim Burton fan ever (she wears black and she collects EVERYTHING Tim Burton and I'm rather jealous lol) showed me the book one day when I was visiting. It's the most wondrous and bizarre read I could ever have the pleasure of experiencing. It
Jim Ef
Dec 25, 2015 Jim Ef rated it it was amazing
Damn!!! This is so dark but funny so Tim Burton

Its a collection of very short stories about very strange beings. There are no happy endings at all. You see all of those likeable people ( or matchsticks or whatever ) and you think, aww its sad what happened with them, i bet things will be good in the end.........NO.
Im not proud but i laughed with the most of the stories, is it something wrong with me? should i be worried?

Read this book, i don't know why or how but it will cheer you up
Robert Beveridge
Jan 22, 2008 Robert Beveridge rated it liked it
Shelves: finished, cle-pub-lib
Tim Burton, The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy and Other Stories (Morrow, 1997)

Someone needs to explain this to me and fast, `cause I don't get it: how is it that bad poetry (and yes, folks, this is truly bad) and art that looks like a second-rate Edward Gorey ripoff (Burton is not the illustrator that he is the sculptor and animator) can be so insanely funny? I am completely at a loss for why I liked this anywhere near as much as I did.

Let's face it, if you squint right while watching The Night
Asghar Abbas
May 14, 2016 Asghar Abbas rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition

I wonder what it would be like to live inside Tim Burton's head ala Being John Malkovich, such talent, such virile imaginations, to dwell within his noggin for a while, you know? I don't know why but for some reason I have always held Burton's creativity on par with Neil Gaiman's, though their style are very dissimilar, but both have distinct styles, that's almost as important as talent. I feel these little stories about grotesque beauty, and what a beauty it was, were full of metaphors, heavy w
Charlotte Jones
Aug 17, 2015 Charlotte Jones rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
This book is full of mad ideas and sometimes disturbing themes, but overall these poems are easy to read, enjoyable and enhanced by the wonderful illustrations provided by Tim Burton. It is something that I could easily read just a few poems out of if I didn't have much time, or something that I will definitely be re-reading in its entirity at some point in the future. Robot Boy is my favourite of the collection due to the humour and interesting accompanying images.
Mar 18, 2015 Somayeh rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
خیلی خوب بود, خیلی
داستان-شعر های این کتاب دقیقا توی همون فضای انیمیشن عروس مرده یا کابوس قبل از کریسمس بودند

اگر طرفدار کارهای تیم برتون هستید حتما بخونیدش
اینم تصویر بعضی از شخصیتهای این کتاب:)

Jan 07, 2015 Miguel rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Mórbido, sinistro, excêntrico, inusitado, imaginoso, fantasioso, esquisito e extravagante… Tim Burton não tem outro registo e é reconhecidamente bom neste. A catadura das suas personagens e respetivas ilustrações corresponde e convém perfeitamente às intenções das mensagens transmitidas, seja em que domínio for.
Eu gosto, pessoalmente, mas é desaconselhável ler A morte melancólica do rapaz Ostra e outras estórias em público, uma vez que o conteúdo da obra suscita casquinadas graves que lembra
Seeker of dreams
Feb 08, 2016 Seeker of dreams rated it liked it
Shelves: read-in-2016
This is a collection of short poems accompanied of drawings in which cruelty and tenderness is mixed with some strange and lonely children.
Its a terribly creepy and madly depressing book, but made me laugh too.

Voodoo girl

Her skin is white cloth,
and she’s all sewn apart
and she has many colored pins
sticking out of her heart.

She has many different zombies
who are deeply in her trance.
She even has a zombie
who was originally from France.

But she knows she has a curse on her,
a curse she cannot win.
Franco  Santos
Siniestro, gótico, oscuro. Un libro de Tim Burton no podría no ser así. Es una seguidilla de historias tristes y obviamente tétricas. Me gustó.
Sara Alaee
Mar 17, 2015 Sara Alaee rated it liked it
Strange but nice poems!
Narges Moini
Jan 27, 2016 Narges Moini rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The girl who turned into a bed!

It happened that day
she picked up a strange pussy willow.
Her head swelled up white
and a soft as a pillow.

Her skin, which had turned
all flaky and rotten,
was now replaced
with 100% cotton.

Through her organs and torso
she sprouted like wings,
a beautiful set
of mattress and springs.

It was so terribly strange
that I started to weep.
But at least after that
I had a nice place to sleep
Maryam Muhammadi
کی فکرش را می کرد که کسی

از تنفس هوای بیرون بمیرد؟؟؟؟

وقتی روح ری بدنش را ترک کرد،

ما همه در دل دعا خواندیم.

روحش رفت به آسمان

و سوراخی در لایه اوزون درست کرد.

Dec 09, 2015 Claudia rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommended to Claudia by: Nicola
Two words.

Tim Burton.
Jan 25, 2016 Camilla rated it liked it
3.5 stars!
Δήμητρα (cαλm anδ quεαsy)
Ακολουθεί μέρος της βιογραφίας μου.

Η πρώτη μου γνωριμία με τον Tim Burton έγινε το καλοκαίρι του '99 σε μια αρμένικη ταβέρνα.
Say what?
Όχι, δεν τον είδα να τρώει λαχματζούν.
Είχαμε βγει έξω για φαγητό με οικογενειακούς φίλους. Εγώ (όπως πάντα) βαριόμουν αφόρητα. Κοίταζα από δω κοίταζα απο κει, τάιζα την αδέσποτη γάτα κάτω από το τραπέζι ώσπου ο ταβερνιάρης (καλή του ώρα) αλλάζει κανάλι στην τηλεόραση που είχε βγάλει έξω στην αυλίτσα και πέφτει πάνω στο Edward Scissorhands.
Έρωτας με την πρώτη ματιά
Apr 06, 2011 Aldrin rated it really liked it
Half-oyster, half-boy, Oyster Boy is born to a perfectly human couple who supposedly conceived him after dining on “one spectatular dish- / a simmering stew of mollusks and fish.” Growing up, Oyster Boy, whose proper name is Sam but is sometimes called "that thing that looks like a clam," becomes a laughingstock (“When the Thompson quadruplets espied him one day, / they called him a bivalve and ran quickly away.) and a picture of sadness and reticence (“One spring afternoon, / Sam was left in th ...more
Mar 28, 2015 Mahdi rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: فانتزی
خیلی جالب بود. ممنون از بزرگوارانی که معرفی کردن.
شیوه ی کار تیم برتون توی فیلم هاش رو میشه "فانتزی سیاه" نامید. یعنی ایده های فانتزی ای که همراه با وحشت و مرگ هستن. این فانتزی ابداً برای بچه ها نیست. انیمیشن های معروف برتون توی این حال و هوا، کابوس پیش از کریسمس و عروس مرده هستش.

فضای این کتاب، تلفیقی از فانتزی سیاه تیم برتون و طنز شل سیلور استاینه: ترکیب طنز و وحشت.
نتیجه خوب از آب دراومده. هر چند بعضیاشون میتونستن خیلی بهتر باشن.
Apr 20, 2008 Núria rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: los que se han sentido alguna vez un bicho raro
Un librito delicioso lleno de freaks para los que alguna vez se han sentido unos freaks. Es el típico universo de Tim Burton traducido en poemitas de una ingenuidad brillante. No es necesario decir nada más. Sólo añadiré que yo lloré con la historia del Chico Ostra y también con la de Chico Momia. Pero en realidad todos los personajes son tan entrañables que me gustaría poder adoptarlos a todos.
El Marcapaginas
Apr 24, 2016 El Marcapaginas rated it it was amazing
Shelves: mi-biblioteca
Un libro de poemas con ese estilo gótico de Tim Burton que tanto nos tiene acostumbrados. Poemas e historias llenas de ironía y simpatía que me hicieron sonreír y emocionarme. Las ilustraciones son simplemente brillantes y se puede apreciar el talento de este creativo/director que a día de hoy me parece un genio loco maravilloso.
Hossein Pazham
Jun 20, 2015 Hossein Pazham rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
در یک کلام باید بگویم که : تیم برتون نابغه است

کتاب به اتودهایی از ایده هایی می ماند که برتون در ذهن دارد و گزاشته خوب پخته شوند تا روزی از این طرح ها و ایده های بی نظیر هم فیلم هایی به یاد ماندنی مانند دیگر فیلم هایش بسازد.
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Timothy "Tim" William Burton is a prolific American film director/writer, best known for the dark imagry and quirky nature of his popular films. He is also the author and illustrator of the poetry collection "The Melancholy Death of Oyster Boy & Other Stories."
More about Tim Burton...

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“Stick Boy liked Match Girl,
He liked her a lot.
He liked her cute figure,
he thought she was hot.
But could a flame ever burn
for a match and a stick?
It did quite literally;
he burned up quick.”
“Son, are you happy?
I don't mean to pry,
but do you dream of Heaven?
Have you ever wanted to die?”
More quotes…