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The Butter Battle Book

4.18  ·  Rating details ·  11,864 ratings  ·  562 reviews
Illus. in full color.
"Dr. Seuss chronicles the feud between the Yooks and the Zooks from slingshots through sophisticated weaponry, until each side has the capacity to destroy the world. The language amuses, the drawings are zesty and humorous, and the demand for this book will be large."-- "School Library Journal."

"Provocative, packs an allegorical punch. The parade of
Hardcover, First Edition, First Printing, 42 pages
Published January 12th 1984 by New York: Random House
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Average rating 4.18  · 
Rating details
 ·  11,864 ratings  ·  562 reviews

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Archit Ojha
Jul 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ebooks
Recommended and recited by my wife.

The battle lines are drawn and the fight gets real. There's a think tank working its way furiously to trump the enemy.

Yooks and Zooks and their different styles of applying butter on the bread.

The book inculcates respect and the very essential feeling of tolerance into children.

The unity in diversity.
Feb 20, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: poetry

Lovely one

"In every Zook house and in every Zook town
every Zook eats his bread
with the butter side down!"

"The Boys in my Back Room invented
this rig
called the Eight‐Nozzled, Elephant‐
Toted Boom‐Blitz"
Oct 10, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Dr. Seuss!!!
Butter Battle Book

6 stars!!!

Being a huge fan of Dr. Seuss’ works over the years, I was in that mode where I wanted to read everything that was written by him and I remembered reading “The Butter Battle Book” many years ago when I was little. Well, I stumbled upon “The Butter Battle Book” again when I got older and at first, I was a little hesitant about reading this book again because of its war themes and I usually do not like reading books about wars, but after reading this classic book by Dr. Seuss, I
Sandra Stiles
Oct 31, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children
Okay you are probably wondering why I am talking about this book. In my Language Arts class my students had to read "The Sneetches" by Dr. Seuss. Today I read "The Butter Battle Book" also by Dr. Seuss. The idea is they are to compare and contrast the two books. Needless to say my very knowledgeable sixth graders proceeded to tell me how the Butter Battle Book is actually a political story about the Cold War. I almost dropped my teeth. Why? A few years ago when I did a lesson on the Berlin Wall ...more
Feb 23, 2017 added it
Shelves: for-the-boys, 2017
We all are intimately familiar with the glorious rhyming and the honest joy of reading a Dr. Seuss book aloud. Considering some of the check-outs that my kindergartner has brought home this year - the kind I begrudgingly cracked open and read each night with the sort of over-taxed smile and forced lilt necessary to make it through the more inane children's books - seeing a Dr. Seuss was a great relief. One that I've never read or heard of to boot!

Unfortunately, the nightly recite until
Jan 18, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: young-children
I think it is one of his best!
Nov 25, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Fans of Children's Books w/a Message, Fables, Satirical Humor
Recommended to Julianna by: Readers Against Prejudice & Racism
Reviewed for THC Reviews
The Butter Battle Book is another of Dr. Seuss's titles which reflect his activist side. Through satirical humor, he explores the ridiculousness and futility of war. The Yooks and the Zooks have an age-old disagreement over which way to eat their bread, butter side up or down, and as a result, they eventually start a war over it. They begin with sentries guarding the wall separating their borders which of course, could be taken as a metaphor for anything that separates us
Skylar Burris
Jun 25, 2008 rated it really liked it
Shelves: childrens
This is clearly a parable for nuclear proliferation, and no doubt Suess condemns it. However, there is no clear moral drawn in this story, and the events are left unresolved. What will happen? "We will see..." Therefore, the reader is left to draw his own conclusions. As a parent, you can "read" this any way you like with your child: the liberal can focus on the frivolity of war and the dangers of mutually assured destruction; the conservative can, in contrast, argue that peace will ensue ...more
Feb 15, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-to-cass
A very clever book, really impressed with this one. Shows how to respect somebody if they are different or if they believe in something you don't understand. It then goes on to show if you don't that hatred can turn into a conflict with each side building bigger and bigger weapons, until you end up in a stand-off with a big-boy-boomeroo. Really well done and it leads up to some very interesting discussions with the child you read it too.
Lee Thompson
Mar 23, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Me and Rae loved this story. When we hit the end, she wanted to know "What happens?" and it was fun to tell her that it was up to the reader to determine what will happen. Does the Yook drop his bomb and kill himself and the Zook? Or what if the Zook drops his bomb first? Is the first one to drop his bomb surprised to find it is a dud? Will the Zook win, as he has every time before, and history prove that it is always repeating itself? Which way is the right way to butter your bread?
Jun 30, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I love activist Seuss books. This book is good, but makes me a little perturbed. I want to laugh at the stupidity of it all, but it's not funny. In other Seuss books, like the Lorax, there's more of a child-like tone to the story. My kids felt the tension in this book and the oldest one even shouted, "Can they stop being weird and just hug. They need to stop fighting and get along." There you have it. Like many world problems, there is no resolve in this story. It left my kids a little ...more
Mar 09, 2009 rated it it was amazing
A response to Cold War nuclear proliferation and mutually assured destruction as told through buttered toast.
NaTaya Hastings
Dec 27, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites, audiobook
Wow. Just wow. In all of my thirty one years, I have never actually read the Butter Battle Book. It must be one of the only Dr. Seuss books I've never read. I had no idea how dark and gritty it was going to be.

Keep in mind, it IS just a children's book, so it isn't like there is blood and guts and brains spilling out of cracked skulls or anything, but still... This book, short and silly though it may be, takes a hard, honest look at war and how out of control and dangerous it can become.

It was
Lynne Marshall
Jan 26, 2017 rated it it was amazing
A perfect story for our world today.
Nov 07, 2018 rated it really liked it
That cliffhanger ending! AARGH! I NEED TO KNOW WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!

The Butter Battle is about the Yooks who eat their toast butter side up and the Zooks who eat their toast butter side down (blasphemy!). This resulted in the great Butter Battle where each country is convinced that their way of eating toast is the correct way. What started off as a disagreement quickly escalates to a full on war.

I think this is a great book that teaches kids about war and how pointless it is. We should just
Jan 28, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Still fantastic.
Kirsten Little
Apr 18, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Dr. Seuss has been known to include many different political issues and views in his children's books. I find this extremely interesting and different than many authors. I feel like most children book authors would steer away from politics since many children do not understand the deeper meaning. However, Dr. Seuss used his children books as a platform for different political issues.
Dr. Seuss uses this book as a platform to talk about the Cold War to a younger audience. In the book, there are
Mar 15, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: five-stars, 2008, dr-seuss
Another Seuss work with a social undertone, this one is about prejudice and war. Two groups hate each other for what amounts to a completely ridiculous reason, and each thinks they are better than the other. Through classic indoctrination, their governments feed citizens the ideas that they are different and must hate one another.

A random and rather juvenile act of violence instigates a full-assault war, and it is interesting to watch as the two sides compete to see who can build a better, more
Jon Nakapalau
Should be required reading for all elected officials...
Jan 31, 2018 added it
Yes I’m counting this as part of my reading challenge I need to build my book count lool. I had to read this for this volunteering program I do and this book is part of the curriculum to teach kids about conflicts and stuff. And I think this is one great book to show conflict in a way that’s humorous and in a way that can show kids how conflicts can arise and become unnecessary. but personally I think you should have your butter on the top not the bottom so I can see how the Yooks would hate ...more
Thomas J. Benedict
Feb 08, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I missed Dr. Seuss so I picked up this beauty of a book.
What I never realized as a child was the social statement in this book.
Dr. Seuss uses this story as a reflection of the Cold War, mutually assured destruction, to illustrate how silly conflict can be.

The artwork is abstract and beautiful, as always.
Dr Seuss was a genius.
Dan Dixon
Feb 13, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: 2019-reads
This is basically a book about differences and how they can lead to people acting without thinking. The book does not really end, it just stops and lets the reader fill in the details. It is a good book to help children understand that there are many kinds of people in the world.
Sandra Bašić
Aug 03, 2017 rated it liked it
Not bad, but illustrations are great as always!
Oct 30, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great book. Points out the escalation of trying to be better than those we choose to make enemies - usually for stupid reasons.
Oct 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens-books
One of the most profound and powerful of Dr. Seuss's books. I would recommend it to politicians and men and women of the armed forces everywhere. Or even just those who like to quarrel and tend to let things get out of hand over heated emotion. *Sigh* I know war and fighting and a system of defense is important towards a countries "safety" and preservation or what not but by now after paying attention to history and war and all the blood that has been shed can we find a better way to solve our ...more
Curly Carla Celebrity Readers
Feb 12, 2016 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens

When I was a young girl, my father used to read Dr. Seuss books to me before bed. He would do accents and speak in a comforting rhythm that never failed to lull me to sleep. It’s one of my earliest memories of reading. And one of my fondest.

I knew once I found out I was going to be a mother that I would get to pass on that love of Dr. Seuss to my daughter. I’m confident it will turn into a tradition because my daughter loves to read Dr. Seuss to me; I can
Jun 23, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books, 2014
Basic plot: The Yooks and Zooks escalate their battle over the all important question of which side of the bread should be buttered.

In Gulliver's Travels by Jonathan Swift, Lilliput wars with Blefuscu over whether an egg should be cracked at the little end or big end (I tend to crack them in the middle, suppose that makes me a complete heretic), but the symbolism implied that Swift was making fun of the fight over Catholicism vs. Protestantism between England and France. People are fighting
Dan Wilson
Feb 04, 2013 rated it really liked it
I am a Dr. Seuss fan, and my 5 year-old is, too. No exception here for either of us, though I (and my son, I think) don't think this is his best work. I remember being old enough when this book came out in 1984 to know that it was controversial, in part because it is a book for children that takes on the arms race (in the period when there was a Soviet Union, the made-for-TV movie The Day After, and Reagan "jokingly" announcing "My fellow Americans, I'm pleased to tell you today that I've signed ...more
Gijs Grob
This is one of the last books Dr. Seuss drew and wrote, and one can see that his drawing skills aren't what they used to be (the guy was 79 at the time, so this is not surprising). The book is a clear product of the cold war era, and especially of the doom era (ca. 1979-1985), in which the feeling of impending nuclear doom was felt the most. In 'The Butter Battle Book' we watch an arms race between two neighboring countries, whose only difference is on which side they butter their bread. Only ...more
Makenzie Soeken
Sep 23, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
The message in this book is so funny because in a lot of ways it really does represent governments, and how people with opposing viewpoints take things so personally, even though it doesn't have to be that way. I think that this would be a fun book to use with a high school government class, and have them make text to world connections based on what happens in the book and what they see happening with the government in our nation.
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Seuss Lovers: The Butter Battle Book 1 0 Dec 06, 2012 06:33PM  
wait how many grandfathers are there....? Who is the narrator? 4 14 May 25, 2012 10:09AM  

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Theodor Seuss Geisel was born 2 March 1904 in Springfield, MA. He graduated Dartmouth College in 1925, and proceeded on to Oxford University with the intent of acquiring a doctorate in literature. At Oxford he met Helen Palmer, who he wed in 1927. He returned from Europe in 1927, and began working for a magazine called Judge, the leading humor magazine in America at the time, submitting both ...more