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Mitchell Goes Bowling (Mitchell)

3.96  ·  Rating details ·  323 Ratings  ·  102 Reviews
Battle on! Head to the lanes for another hilarious, high-energy story as four-year-old Mitchell and his obliging dad strike a winning deal.

Mitchell liked to knock things down.
That’s just how he rolled.

One Saturday, when Mitchell almost knocks down his dad, his dad catches him and puts him in the car. And when they step into the bowling alley, Mitchell feels right at home.
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published September 10th 2013 by Candlewick Press
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Barb Middleton
Feb 19, 2014 rated it it was amazing
A great book for kids who are trying to learn something new and are frustrated. Four-year-old Mitchell goes bowling for the first time and is having a fun time but he really wants to knock down all the pins like his dad. He gets so frustrated he can't that he wants to leave. His dad suggests that they be on the same team and they toss the ball together.

Tony Fucile is one of my favorite illustrators. He makes me laugh so hard. One of my favorite pages is Mitchell blow drying his hands, then his
Richie Partington
Sep 28, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Richie's Picks: MITCHELL GOES BOWLING by Hallie Durand and Tony Fucile, ill., Candlewick, September 2013, 40p., ISBN: 978-0-7636-6049-9

"Just keep your eye on the ball, Barney boy."
-- Fred Flintstone, on his way to converting a 7-10 split

"More than 20,000 people are treated in emergency rooms each year from injuries suffered at bowling alleys, according to the U.S. Product Safety Commission.
"Injuries range from frequent bowlers suffering tissue damage to kids getting smashed by the heavy ball.
This book is awesome!!!!!!!!! Mitchell loves to knock things down so his dad introduces him to the sport of bowling. There's tons of details about the experience including the happy dances bowlers do when they score a strike.

I can't say enough good about this book! There's a great storyline featuring father and son, there's the way the father took a destructive behavior (Mitchell's affinity for knocking things over) and turned it into a constructive activity (bowling), there's the hilarious hot
Oct 18, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: juvenile-nf
Having grown up in a bowling alley where my Dad was the proprietor, this book brought back soooo many memories. The images and words made me remember the sounds and smells that accompany the environment of the lanes. Mitchell's dad was quite clever, patient, and understanding, and Mitchell learned a very important lesson. Bravo to the author!
The illustrator gets kudos as well for capturing the scenes and expressions.
Most people are not familiar with candlepin bowling (that's the 'little' balls)
The Library Lady
Oct 09, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
First of all, it's nice to have a book about going bowling for kids--don't think there are any other bowling stories!

This is perfectly pitched--and by that I am speaking of sounds/mood, not throwing a baseball! As in Mitchell's License, Durand's understanding of the emotions and feelings of a young child are spot on.
And best of all, Mitchell's dad gets things too--how to channel Mitchell's energies and how to handle his frustrations. Ms Durand is on a roll (sorry) with these characters and I hop
May 20, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I read this book to several Pre-K classes this month, and it was a hit every time. The kids were really rooting for little four year Mitchell during his quest for an "X". They laughed when he fell, when he or his dad did a hot potato dance, and they asked to hear the story again when it was over. This book was Pre-K tested, and approved.
Nov 01, 2013 rated it really liked it
I don’t care for series, but this is really good. Father and son get some quality bonding time together through bowling.
Sep 04, 2017 rated it liked it

There are great illustrations this book. The illustrator captured bowling and its ups and downs perfectly.

Mar 20, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sports
I come from a family of bowlers, so I had to take this one out when I found it at the library. The illustrations are marvellous and the story is fun. And bowling deserves to have some stories too. Makes me want to write a similar story for five-pin.

I do have a couple of quibbles, like seeing Mitchell face-first in the ball return - and how on earth can a four-year-old can lift a ten-pin bowling ball? It was a good chance to reinforce some safety lessons with Mini-Me, though.
Nov 08, 2017 rated it liked it
Mitchell likes to knock things down. And he's pretty good at it. But then his dad takes him bowling where it's okay to knock things down. Only, Mitchell isn't very good at this.
Marissa Elera
Jan 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: parents, sports
I don't think I could possibly love this more. The amusing, honest text paired with hilarious, expressive illustrations makes me so happy.
Donna Mork
Mar 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
Cute book. Dad takes Mitchell bowling. Mitchell isn't very good at getting all the pins down. So his dad helps them. Together, they can win.
Laurel Kathleen
Jan 22, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Loved it! Loved everything about it. Great story and very cool art too.
Sydney Martindale
Nov 15, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-book
This book is so fun. I love that it talks about a sport that isn't talked about usually in books. For kids, like Judah, who are interested in bowling this is a perfect book for them. It also teaches a very good lesson about teamwork and not giving up when you're not good at something on your first try.
Mar 03, 2017 rated it liked it
A boy and his dad experience all the fun that goes along with bowling.

It's a bit long for story time but would be good for one-on-one sharing if you're looking for a picture book about bowling or father-son relationships.
Abriana Chamberlain
Dec 02, 2014 rated it liked it
Mitchell Goes Bowling is about a boy who's father decides to take him bowling on Saturday afternoon. As soon as they walk in Mitchell is so excited to start playing, him and his dad both get their shoes and find their lane. They type in their names and Mitchell goes first, he gets a gutter ball and isn't too happy about it. His dad then goes and STRIKE! Mitchell tries to go again and does a little kick just like his dad, well that doesn't end up very well. He slips and gets another gutter ball. ...more
Another Mitchell book! And it is wonderful. I adore the illustrations--Fucile is definitely a favorite for me. And this story was just as fun as the previous Mitchell one--with a portrayal of a fabulous dad and clever way to entertain a child as well as teamwork.

6/11/14: I had a good though somewhat quieter crowd. They sat still and they listened. They answered my questions. And they seemed to like the story. They just didn't laugh very loudly.

9/29/14-10/2/14: I had this as an option during the
Oct 11, 2013 rated it really liked it
Mitchell loves to knock things down--whether it be wood blocks, a bowl of cereal or a stack of important papers. He's been a speed demon in the past but now he's a wrecking ball. What's a parent to do? Fortunately, his father has the right idea when he takes Mitchell to the bowling alley where his knack for knocking things down is just what's needed to win the game. Strike after strike, his father knocks down the pins, while Mitchell gets gutterballs. He throws, yells and even prays but his hand ...more
Oct 02, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 4-stars
A few weeks ago, I was in a slump of just okay books. I thought it was me. Now this week I have had several books that I have rated high. Either the books have truly been great or truly dreadful or I just shouldn't judge books anymore.

I wanted to hate this book just so I could give a book 1 stars (It has been awhile) I wanted to rant and rave on how horrible this book was and how obnoxious the premise was...

However, it isn't the books fault that is was great! I loved the dad and son element, I
Aug 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
Readers first met the rambunctious speed demon Mitchell in Mitchell's License in which he "drove" his father to exhaustion. In this equally delightful book, Mitchell heads to the bowling alley with his father. He immediately loves its noises, sights, and smells, and he is able to put all his energy into throwing the bowling ball. But learning to bowl isn't easy, and despite his competitive nature, Mitchell just can't bowl a strike like his father. Readers and parents of young children will nod t ...more
May 13, 2014 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: parent's of energetic boys
Shelves: picture-book, fathers
I love Mitchell! "Mitchell ALWAYS knocked things down. That's just how he rolled." So his Dad takes him bowling.

I'll see about reading this for my Father's Day programs.

Read for a first grade class, they were wide eyed, but the teacher was laughing. 5/6/14

Used in story time, but Mitchell's License, might be more on the younger level and this might be better for K-2 or for children more likely to have some bowling experience. 6/10/14

Went over really well at my PreK outreach. About a third of the
Aug 31, 2013 rated it really liked it
Mitchell is a rambunctious four-year old who loves to knock things down. When he almost a knocks his dad down, dad comes up with a plan. He picks Mitchell up and takes him to the bowling alley. Although Mitchell did not know where they were, he liked the place! It had colorful balls, smelled like pizza AND there were crashing noises! But, when he is not successful at knocking pins down, he is ready to give up. He wants to be like his dad who "got an X" and then another and then another. How will ...more
Nashiea Edmiston
Sep 23, 2015 rated it really liked it
In Mitchell Goes Bowling we are introduced to a little boy named Mitchell who loves to knock things down all around the house. His father decides to take Mitchell to the bowling alley where Mitchell immediately feels a connection. Mitchell is not as good against his father, but things change when they decide to team up instead! A great book to illustrate that there are more constructive, and fun, ways to let off a little energy and that instead of giving up when you think you will never succeed, ...more
Oct 14, 2013 rated it it was amazing
A cute book about a boy who likes to knock things down and his wise father who takes him to a bowling alley to avoid further destruction at the house. Mitchell is an adorable 4-year-old who takes to bowling like a whirlwind throwing gutter balls and sliding down the aisle in his efforts to get that magical X. Just when he is ready to give up his father saves the day and restores Mitchell's spunkyness. A fun read that made me laugh at the delightful illustrations which clearly demonstrate Mitchel ...more
Carol Royce Owen
Dec 16, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Mitchell and his dad are back again. As Dad notices that Mitchell likes to knock things down he thinks of the best place for him to do that - the bowling alley. Mitchell loves the bowling alley, but he's a pretty competitive kiddo, so when he notices his dad getting lots of Xs and his own bowl often goes in the gutter or knocks just a few pins down, Mitchell gets jealous. And then when Dad gets to do a steamin'-hot potato dance Mitchell gets even more jealous. Maybe he doesn't like this game aft ...more
Aug 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
I've been a fan of Tony Fucile since reading Let's Do Nothing several years ago. Once again, Fucile's illustrations bring energy and action to a terrific story line. One day, his dad invites four-year-old Mitchell--who lives to knock things down--to go with him to the bowling alley. Naturally, Mitchell feels right at home, but is soon discouraged when the all powerful strike eludes him. Durand's characters--both Mitchell and his steamin'-hot-potato-dancing dad explode off the page. Humor and ene ...more
Kristine Hansen
Sep 23, 2013 rated it really liked it
Shelves: sports
Loved this! A father and son book, something you don't see near often enough in picture books (as was pointed out in some of the other reviews). I love that they have a real positive outing, where there is honest and genuine interaction between the two, and the introduction to a good physical activity that little kids love (but find challenging). I'd pair this book with an outing to the bowling alley and watch the fun unfold. Great story! The illustrations are absolutely PERFECT as well. I want ...more
Mitchell loves to knock things down. He even tries to knock his dad down. After that, his dad puts him in the car and takes him to a place where Mitchell feels right at home...the bowling alley. Mitchell quickly learns what a gutter is, that the lanes are slippery and just how hard it is to get an "X" like his dad. He wants to do the steamin' hot potato dance too when he knocks all the pins down. Will he get to do the dance? Read Mitchell Goes Bowling and find out.

Mitchell Goes Bowling promotes
I loved Mitchell for a long time. So of course I was happy to see he was back in this next book. So not only does Mitchell love to drive, he also loves to crash things. So Mitchell’s dad decides to do something about it. He takes him bowling where it is perfectly acceptable to crash things. Only Mitchell isn’t as good at is as his dad. And he is very frustrated. But, just like before Mitchell’s dad has come up with a great way to direct Mitchell’s energy…and it is a great solution. And there is ...more
For starters, I love that this kid is full of energy and uses modern vernacular. Add to that that he's from a mixed race family which is shown but not commented on and you can call it love. The illustrations look like hand-drawn animation stills, which makes me nostalgic in the best possible way. Can I also tell you how much I love that Mitch's dad didn't let him win and didn't suggest Mitchell switch to a lighter bowling ball? He let Mitchell make his choice and live with it until coming up wit ...more
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Hallie Durand (the pen name for Holly M. McGhee) began writing in 2007 and has published the Dessert First chapter book trilogy, two picture books about a boy named Mitchell (Mitchell's License & Mitchell Goes Bowling), and another picture book about her son Marshall (Catch That Cookie!).

More about Hallie Durand...

Other Books in the Series

Mitchell (2 books)
  • Mitchell's License