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Scuffy the Tugboat
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Scuffy the Tugboat

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4.09 of 5 stars 4.09  ·  rating details  ·  14,871 ratings  ·  83 reviews
The story of a toy tugboat and his dream to be somewhere other than the toy store.
Hardcover, 24 pages
Published by Western Publishing Company, Inc. (first published 1946)
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Green Eggs and Ham by Dr. SeussWendall by Othen Donald Dale CummingsAlexander and the Terrible, Horrible, No Good, Very Bad Day by Judith ViorstOne Fish, Two Fish, Red Fish, Blue Fish by Dr. SeussWhere the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak
Books for six-year-olds
243rd out of 392 books — 190 voters
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Best Books of the Decade: 1940's
326th out of 402 books — 506 voters


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Community Reviews

(showing 1-30 of 3,000)
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Kirk
Dreams and aspirations. We all have them. Some of us shoot for the moon so that we may reach the stars . . . but most of the time we're left grasping at straws before our feet even leave the ground.

Then there are the ambitious folks like Scuffy, who jump a few feet only to be beaten back to the earth by the gods. The plight of the has-been remains one of popular culture's main sources of entertainment. The greater the giant, the longer their reign, and the harder they fall, the better. The only
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Matt Cunningham
Apr 19, 2012 Matt Cunningham rated it 5 of 5 stars  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: Everyone
A nautical classic on par with the saga of Horatio Hornblower or the seagoing adventures of Ishmael. The reader is instantly transported to the 1940's world of Scuffy the tugboat in a quest I think we all share: the search for self-worth, validation, and confidence in a shifting and patronizing society. Without spoiling the story, Scuffy triumphs and banishes his twisted demons, while still not going so far beyond the pale that he is unable to reconcile with The Man With The Polkadot Tie and his ...more
John Yelverton
Fun little children's book.
Kory Bootsma
Scuffy the tugboat is a lonely toy at the toy store who dreams of achieving "bigger things". Taken home by a young boy, Scuffy finds himself "setting sail" in the local stream. Scuffy sings his "happy toot" as he travels along, exploring the landscape and meeting new animals. Yet as darkness falls, Scuffy becomes afraid and finds himself in other challenges that he must overcome. Yet the minute the story takes a dark turn, Scuffy wakes up and the reader realizes that it's just a dream. This book ...more
Luann
This was the first book I read all the way through by myself when I was learning to read. I still remember how great I felt when I finally got to the last page!
Karl
Classic, and brings up nice memories, but has a somewhat disturbing message ("Be happy where you are - the world is big and scary!"
Angie
Synopsis: "Meant for “bigger things,” Scuffy the Tugboat sets off to explore the world. But on his daring adventure Scuffy realizes that home is where he’d rather be, sailing in his bathtub. For over 50 years, parents and children have cherished this classic Little Golden Book."

My Review: Munchkin saw this cover on the back of another golden book and wanted to read it. Unfortunately, this one didn't capture Munchkin's attention the way we expected. The story was a little long and a overly descri
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Wayne S.
Scuffy is a red toy tugboat with a blue smokestack who doesn’t like sitting in a toy shop. So the man with the polka dot tie who owns the store takes Scuffy home where his little boy sails him in the bathtub. But Scuffy doesn’t like being limited to a bathtub either. So the man and the boy take Scuffy to a brook, and Scuffy sails away, down the brook to the river, past villages and cities, all the way to the sea. What will happen to the little tugboat? Will Scuffy ever make it back home?
This Li
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Laura
Scuffy is sad. Scuffy is cross. Scuffy doesn’t want to live all of his life at the toystore. He wants to go out and see the world – go on a grand adventure on the famous waterways of the world! But how can he do that while he is stuck on the shelf?

One day, the man in the polka dot tie who owns the toyshop takes pity on Scuffy and brings him home to sail in the bathtub. But Scuffy refuses to sail in the tub – a fine tugboat like him deserves to float on a real river! So the man in the polka dot t
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Ryan
This is one of those books that my son seems to like, but I'm not a fan of. At all. I read it to him when requested, and I try to like it at least half as much as he does, but I just can't do it.

Scuffy is a toy tugboat who is not content to spend his days on a toyshelf or in a bathtub. His owners sense this somehow, place him in a stream one day, and whoosh, off he goes on a journey. We follow Scuffy as the stream gets wider and wider, deeper and deeper, faster and faster. Scuffy manages to flo
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Christina Taylor
Scuffy the Tugboat is a tale of appreciation in which a red-painted tugboat has the adventure of his life and learns to value the life he has rather than yearning for “bigger things.” When Scuffy expresses displeasure with his toy store existence, the shop owner suggests that perhaps he would be happier if he went sailing. This benevolent shop owner takes Scuffy home and places him in a bath tub to sail. Convinced that he is meant for even bigger things, Scuffy is still not happy, so the shop ow ...more
Linda Schreyer
Considering that I am the heir to TIbor Gergely's artwork, it is an amazing pleasure to read Scuffy to my 2 year old grandson. And to discover how much my grandson loves this book. Tibor Gergely (an honorary uncle to me, best friend of my family) was the most gentle and loving man I ever met. Only a man with such love in his heart could have drawn such iconic illustrations. Thank you, Geri!
Angela
I remember reading this book with my Grandmother on Friday nights when I would have a sleepover at her house. This is a great book about a little tugboat who thinks he is meant for bigger and better things than just a bathtub. When he gets his chance to go to those bigger and better places he takes it, but soon finds out that sometimes you are meant to be where you are no matter how much you think you want a change. I loved this book when I was a child and I love it now as a parent. This is a cu ...more
ScarlettMi
I vaguely remember this book being one of my favourites from when I was really little. I can remember reading it with my mom and my grandma. I even have the vague sense that it was a little creepy or scary or had some sort of suspenseful moment(s)? I just remember that I Loved it.
Jessica
I think I like this story more now because the book we have was mine when I was a child. But the adventure of the little boat is fun and my girls get sucked in. But the moral of it all is to be content where you are in life and the purpose for which you were made.
Jayetta Carter-mcfarlin
I would use this book across all elementary grade levels to examine writing styles. This book is also good for teaching reading comprehension skills like predicting, imaging, monitoring, and summarizing. I would use the book to introduce a social studies lesson emphasing how the boat travels to different places. The book also mentions the weather conditions and the jobs the people are doing in those places. Since the little boy's toy boat begins its travel down a brook which emptied into a river ...more
Noelle Walsh
I liked this book when I was a kid. I didn't read it until it fell apart (like I did with Pinocchio) but I remember liking it. I think I ended up going through a phase of liking tugboats after that.
Karen
I bought this book for the artwork. That is not to say that the story is bad -- it isn't bad -- it's just that the artwork is better.

Scuffy, the toy tugboat, thought he was too big for the toy shelf, so the toy store owner brought him home. Then Scuffy thought he was too big for the bathtub, so the toy store owner and his son took Scuffy to the brook. But it was Spring and the brook was in high spirits. And high-spirited brooks lead to rivers, and rivers lead to the sea. And toy tugboats are far
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Dee
My poor mother had to read this book to me OVER and over again. It was one I never seemed to get tired of hearing.
Jonelle Tiffany Boulter
Teaches children about appreciating what they have.
H.L. Stephens
Yet another favorite from the Golden Books collection.
♥ Sarah ♥
Jan 03, 2015 ♥ Sarah ♥ marked it as to-read  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: own, childrens




Age:
Lesson:
Purchased: $0.65 on eBay
Kathryn
One of my favorite childhood books. :)
Will Kastner
Deadly to susceptible young minds.
Tim
A little tugboat isn't satisfied sitting on the shelf of a toy store. The owner obliges and puts him in his bathtub. That still isn't enough, so he gets dropped in a stream. But Scuffy has great ambitions for his life, and floats downstream in search of a bigger world. Will the world end up being too big for Scuffy?
Overall, I think the story is interesting; It has a message that one can relate to, but sometimes it shows it's age. Certain vocabulary words seem either unusual or too advanced for t
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Asho
This was one of my favorite books as a child, and I found it at the used bookstore, so of course I had to buy it for the memories!
In retrospect, I have no idea why I liked it so much. I think it was because of the pictures (I particularly liked the picture of the people putting up sandbags in the flood) and because in the end Scuffy discovers the perfect life for him.
Can't wait to read it to my own child some day! In fact, maybe I'll try to track down a second copy, knowing how rough kids are on
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Riverwalker
Childhood favourite
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