Amar Pai's Reviews > Frog and Toad Are Friends

Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel
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Sep 13, 12

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bookshelves: kids-books

There's one story where Toad and Frog go swimming. Toad can't go in the water without a swimsuit, for some reason, and he's embarrassed by how he looks in it, so he makes Frog look the other way while Toad gets dressed and jumps in the water. Later when it's time to come out Toad tells Frog to look away, but then a mouse overhears and the mouse's ears perk up at the sound of potential embarrassment. "Ooh I gotta see this!" More and more animals are drawn by the prospect of a spectacle, until seemingly the whole forest is amassed at the edge of the river waiting for Toad to come out. Toad tries to outwait them, but eventually he has to come out. So he climbs out, and all the animals laugh at his silly bathing suit and how funny he looks. Toad walks home to change.


That's kind of a messed up story, isn't it? What's the point? To teach kids that if you're a funny looking unpopular weirdo, you should expect to be mocked, teased and/or publicly humiliated?

Hang in there Toad, revenge is a dish best served cold. Also, living well is the best revenge. Finally, a stitch in time saves nine.
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Comments (showing 1-9 of 9) (9 new)

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message 1: by Ettore (new)

Ettore Pasquini I don't have kids, but I find this pretty concerning.

message 2: by John (new)

John Try reading Berenstain Bears and you'll have less trouble with Frog and Toad.

message 3: by Tim (new)

Tim Hyland 1979, a great year for Children's literature.

Dominic When they make fun of how Toad looks, he merely says, "Of course." before trudging home. He still has his dignity despite being mocked. And he and Frog are still friends despite a little ribbing.

Rachelle I like Dominic's response. I think what I like about this story is that it doesn't follow the traditional feel-good formula of children's stories, and it's a little taste of reality. If you're looking for a moral - sometimes our fear of criticism is a well-founded fear, but it's okay to be embarrassed sometimes. Humiliation will happen and it's not the worst thing that can happen. In any case, the story is lighthearted and amusing. I liked it a lot as a kid.

Diggerofbeats Isn't the point that by making it into a big issue only makes more animals curious and inflates the seemingly small issue and only increasing the anxiety? Maybe a little deep/abstract for the average age of the book'a target audience though. Just a thought.

message 7: by John (new)

John Lee Toad has the most "I don't give a crap" face in that last page. It's great.

message 8: by Eric (new)

Eric Lin LOL. That is a horrible swimsuit

message 9: by Dylan (new)

Dylan Jackson Eric wrote: "LOL. That is a horrible swimsuit"
Swimsuit? Pretty sure that's prison attire.

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