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The Bog Baby

4.1  ·  Rating Details ·  326 Ratings  ·  68 Reviews
Do you believe in Bog Babies?
If you don’t, you will!

When two small sisters go fishing in a magic pond, they find something much better than a frog or a newt. They find a Bog Baby. Small and blue, with wings like a dragon, the girls decide to take him home with them and keep him a secret.

But the Bog Baby is a wild thing, and when he gets sick, the girls turn to their mother
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published October 13th 2009 by Schwartz & Wade (first published May 1st 2008)
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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30)
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Lisa Vegan
Nov 13, 2009 Lisa Vegan rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: kids who can believe in magic; kids who love nature; sisters; to educate about wild animals
Recommended to Lisa by: Abigail A.
I felt skeptical that I’d like this book but my Goodreads’ friends Kathryn, Ann, Jackie, and Abigail all rated it highly, so I thought I’d give it a try.

This book is utterly charming in every way.

I absolutely adore the last page, where young readers are encouraged to make notes about any bog baby they might find and are informed that bog babies are extremely rare and how if the reader finds one, how it would be helpful to send information to S.O.B.B. (Save Our Bog Babies). There is a real addres
Nov 13, 2009 Kathryn rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Kathryn by: Abigail A.
My friend Abigail recommended this book to "Anyone Who Believes in the Possibility of Enchantment!" so I knew that I had to get this book and it completely enchanted me ;-) It had been some time since I heard about the book (my library took ages to obtain it) so I didn't remember what the book was about (besides, obviously, the very adorable and magical Bog Baby) and I think that the joy of surprise and discovery helped weave the magic around this book. So, I won't say more than that this is a b ...more
Nov 13, 2009 Ann rated it it was amazing
Recommended to Ann by: Abigail - thanks!
A delightful, sweet, and timeless story!
Not only does "The Bog Baby" have a wonderful message about believing in something, but it also has a wonderful message about "leaving wild things in the wild."
Yes, the "if you love it set it free" plot is nothing new, but I loved the approach Willis takes here.

In this story two little girls go fishing (even though their not supposed to go alone, which the book does make a point of noting is was not a good thing for them to do - definitely reminded me of t
Jackie "the Librarian"
One spring, two sisters don't go to Annie's house, like they told mom. No, they go into Bluebell Wood, to the *magic* pond that's only there in the spring to fish for newts. But they don't find any newts, they find something better!

"He was the size of a frog, only round and blue.
He had boggly eyes and a spiky tail
and I do remember he had ears like a mouse."

They take him home and make him a lovely jar full of shells and fresh water, and feed him cake crumbs. They love him and love him, but beca
wasn't as keen on this book. it was a bit predictable and the children were liars. also the six year students were bring very immature, laughing and shouting out and it really ruined the flow.
Ali Brian
Nov 24, 2012 Ali Brian rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I have been enjoying and sharing this book with my Year 2 class during guided reading. The story is about two small sisters who go fishing in a "magic pond". However, they catch something much better than a "frog or a newt". They find a "Bog Baby" ad decide to make him their secret.

The story tackles the issue of secrets and captured the group of children immediately. The opening sentence sets the scene with the statement "Long ago, when we were little, me and Chrissy did something bad". Pausing
Mar 10, 2010 Janessa rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
I just have to add this book to my list for it's magical sweetness. The plot is pretty standard: two girls find a cute little creature in the pond near their home and take it home as a pet. They love their bog baby, and dote on it, making a home for it and feeding it bits of cake. But, inevitably, their pet grows sick, and sad. It needs to return to its home.

What makes the book stand out are the ethereal illustrations. The airy washes of pink, blue, and yellow transport the reader to a place th
Sep 11, 2016 Bogdan rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-kids
Ideea din spatele povestii chiar ii invata ceva pe copii, stilul de desen mi-a placut, e mai putin abstract ca altele, insa pretul de librarie e foarte ridicat.

Noroc cu reducerile de pe Folosesc paypalul asa ca apelez foarte des la ei. Mi-as dori sa pot comanda si de la alte librarii, dar nu sunt compatibil cu modalitatile de plata.

I enjoyed the ideea of the book, the drawings are quite nice, colorful, but the price it`s kinda high on a library shelf.
Nov 28, 2009 Maureen rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
“Long ago, when we were little, me and Chrissy did something bad. We said we were going to Annie’s house to play, but we didn’t.” With those enticing first lines, Jeanne Willis invites readers, young and old, to turn the page of this charming tale of youthful curiosity that will evoke readers’ memories of outdoor childhood adventures. Making a promise not to divulge their deception, Chrissy and Annie venture through Bluebell Wood to a magic pond, fishing for newts, instead catching “something mu ...more
This book turned me off in the first sentence: "Long ago, when we were little, me and Chrissy did something bad." I can't stand when authors use poor grammar in children's books. Children will never learn correct grammar if they are surrounded by books with poor grammar. If the author had only said "Chrissy and I," I might have given the book another star. But really, I wasn't all that excited by the book anyway.

Two little girls tell their mother they are going to play at a friend's house, but
Sarah Sammis
Mar 08, 2011 Sarah Sammis rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
The Bog Baby by Jeanne Willis and illustrated by Gwen Millward was one of those serendipitous library finds. It had been put on display on the top of the shelves, cover out for the world to see. I had to grab it.

A pair of sisters find a bog baby on their explorations into the nearby woods. It's a little blue blobby creature with fairy wings. They decide to keep it as a pet. Being away from home doesn't agree with the bog baby and he falls ill. Eventually they have to ask for help and fortunately
Another good read in my personal Jeanne Willis mini-season.

Gwen Millward's illustrations were delightful and original, at times jaw dropping in their original combination of styles, both detailed and impressionistic. The snails, insects and fern fronds were especially lovely. I would like to have seen them tied more closely to the text in a few places - the hundreds of bog babies should have been doing the things described in the story, and when the girls blow on the bog baby in hopes of helping
Bog Baby is cute, shy and blue; irresistable to two girls who decide to take him home from the wild bog. Bog Baby is kept in a lovely home in a bucket with mud and shells, and fed cake crumbs. The girls even sneak him to school one day- but Bog Baby is a secret from the girl's parents. When Bog Baby becomes sick, the girls finally tell their mother and ask for help.

This is a story you may have lived yourself when you were little, and one whose events will be readily recognizable to a child. The
Oct 26, 2010 Caitlin rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Childrens books seem to almost swim around me at work. Lots of shapes, colors and covers pass under my fingertips magically leaving behind a little bit of love and wonder. When I checked this particular book, the illustrations grabbed my attention. I love the colors and the technique the artist used, giving very special attention to the dust (magic dust) that fluttered from the Bog baby.
The story is sweet and simple. Bog baby's cannot live anywhere but their bog and you can only find them in spe
Ann Anthony
Aug 15, 2012 Ann Anthony rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
I found this book on a rainy day in Nantucket at a wonderful independent bookstore. I sat down to read it and FELL in LOVE. The illustrations are amazing and the story gave me goose bumps! I can hardly wait to read it to my students. The story follows two sisters who go fishing in a magical pond that only appears in the spring! They find a bog baby and take it it to teach children the concept of wild things needing to live in the wild...or "take only pictures and leave only footprint ...more
Dec 16, 2009 Nielson rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
Instead of going to their friend Annie's house, Chrissy and her sister decide to sneak away to fish in the magical pond in Bluebell Wood. The only thing they end up catching is a Bog Baby with boggly eyes and a spiky tail. It is their little secret as they take him home and love and care for him until he gets sick. The only cure is that he be returned to his home. Although I didn't really care much for the story, I thought the illustrations were sensational. They certainly added a magical feel t ...more
Benjamin Elliott
Mar 31, 2016 Benjamin Elliott rated it liked it
Cute story about sisters who go fishing in the woods and find a bog baby, a special creature that's blue and round and squishy. They take it home to keep as a pet, but it is sad and gets sick in their care so they have to let it go because they love it and don't want it to die. The message is the same as it would be for any other animal they could have caught, but the illustrations, particularly of the bog baby, add extra charm.
Jennifer Miera
Jan 18, 2013 Jennifer Miera rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
A sweet story about two children who capture a bog baby and find out he isn't happy and doesn't thrive in their care, so they must learn to let go despite (or because of) their love for him. Reminds me of my childhood because I was so imaginative (I had a herd of flying horses who walked to school with me and an orphanage in my closet).
The illustrations are lovely. I'd love a tattoo of the that's featured on some of the pages.
Apr 19, 2016 RukiaNotKuchiki rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I've just gone through and 'liked' every good review anyone gave this book on this page because I absolutely adored this enchanting little tale. It was so wonderful and so beautifully illustrated and sweetly told. A must read for any adult or child who lives in the realm of imagination and/or believes in the possibility of magic in the world :-)
Chris Austin
Lovely book, the idea of being able to find your own Bog Baby and write about it, even send the details to an actual website is a wonderful touch.
The messages within the book, the bond between siblings, the way parents react to things, how wild creatures aren't best suited to being pets and how if you love something you want the best for thing.
Jul 31, 2011 Lindsey rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
A cute book about the mysterious Bog baby. A jelly creature with a tail and wings that look like they should belong to a dragon. Of course he is lovable and a precious pet until the fateful day when its owners have to make a choice. Beautifully illustrated and a wonderful lesson for younger grades. My three year old and five year old loved it.
Dec 10, 2015 Alice rated it liked it
Shelves: 3-25-stars
3.25 Stars The cover of this book doesn't do it justice! I liked the pictures. The premise of this story, kids take home a critter from the swamp and try to take care of it but after awhile it gets sick. When they return it to the swamp he thrives. A nice story about letting wild animals be wild! Nicely done!
Apr 03, 2016 16018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
[Little Girl]: Two girls hike though the woods behind their home and discover a tiny magical creature. They take him home and try to take care of him like a pet. What the girls discover is there's no place like home for their Bog Baby. [Mom]: This surprisingly moving picture book will engage parents with the imaginings of their own childhoods.
ESF Tsing Yi
This is a beautiful and thought-provoking story about wild animals belonging in the wild -great for talking about habitats, needs, and also our responsibilities to other creatures. The sisters in the story also hide their discovery from their parents, so it's a great story to discuss family relationships, trust and decision making too.
Sep 17, 2014 June rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: learning to let something go
Recommended to June by: Diane
Shelves: picture-book, love
2 sisters say they are going to a friend's house and instead go to the pond by themselves, where they catch a bog baby. Which they take home and hide in the shed. However, the bog baby doesn't respond well to captivity and Mom finds them crying in the shed. Mom isn't angry. She tells them, "If we really loved the Bog Baby, we had to do what was best for him."
Dec 16, 2009 nicole rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: 2009
despite my tough facade, i cry at commercials, commencement speeches and picture books about having to let someone you love go, even if that someone you love is a bog baby. beautiful illustrations and a sweet story.
Oct 23, 2014 Matthew rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
My son kept asking to read this and at one point throughout the day, I think he was looking for his very own bog baby. I enjoyed the message in this story, the illustrations and it was a hit with my son. That is what it takes to get 5 stars from me.
Jun 20, 2011 Shelli rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
Two young girls go out exploring when they shouldn't be and discover a bog baby. They instantly fall in love with him and want to bring him home. Since they were not supposed to be out by the pond that day they have to do this in secret.
If I had seen this book as a child, I would have read it constantly. The illustrations have a floaty, fairy dust quality; just the type of thing to make you want to hide out and find your own Bog Baby.
Very cute book. It had a good lesson about considering what happens when you take creatures out of their environment. Six year old review "100% great! I loved the pictures and it had a very nice story. You learned something and it made you think."
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Jeanne Willis was born in St Albans and trained as an advertising copywriter at Watford College. She worked for various agencies creating press adverts and TV, cinema and radio commercials. She is now a full-time writer and has published over 80 books. Her hobbies include gardening, reading (non-fiction), natural history and collecting caterpillars. Jeanne has also worked on scripts for TV, includ ...more
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