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The Enormous Potato

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3.70  ·  Rating details ·  218 ratings  ·  48 reviews
Folk tales give us hope. They show us that we can succeed in spite of apparent problems. And they entertain. Perhaps this accounts for their universal appeal and their amazing ability to survive. "The Enormous Potato" is one such story that has been around for generations. Retold by professional storyteller Aubrey Davis, it shows what can be accomplished when everyone lend ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published September 1st 1997 by Kids Can Press (first published January 1st 1997)
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Average rating 3.70  · 
Rating details
 ·  218 ratings  ·  48 reviews


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Heather
Jun 18, 2009 rated it it was amazing
On the surface this book is nothing extraordinary. It's the story of a farmer who grows a potato whose proportions are so large, he needs the assistance of his wife and daughter, as well as the dog, cat, and a mouse, to pull it from the ground. They then proceed to clean, cook, and share the potato with the townspeople, until it has been consumed and nothing is left.

The illustrations are fun for children to see, but don't give away the storyline completely. The words chosen are perfect for earl
...more
Laura
Oct 25, 2012 rated it did not like it
Shelves: library, 2012-reads
A farmer plants a potato that grows and grows until it's the biggest potato in the world. He has to ask his wife, daughter, dog, cat, and mouse for help getting it out of the ground. Once it's out, they feed the whole town. This felt pointless to me. It wasn't funny. It didn't teach anything. It didn't have any sort of lesson. It just is, and I don't really like that. I like for there to be some extra elements that set a story apart. This just didn't do it for me.
Dolly
Dec 28, 2017 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Recommends it for: parents reading with their children
This is an entertaining story that is very similar to the classic Aleksey Nikolayevich Tolstoy story, The Gigantic Turnip. The narrative is repetitive and builds with each cumulative helper, with a fairly predictable ending.

Beginning readers will likely enjoy reading this book, with its repetitions, large fonts, and small amounts of narrative on most pages.

The watercolor and pencil illustrations are cartoonish, with water blotched backgrounds. I enjoyed reading this tale and I loved the images
...more
Gina
May 08, 2019 rated it liked it
Really repetitive in the mode of "The House that Jack Built", but may be soothing for trying to get someone to sleep.
Savannah
Nov 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
Title: The Enormous Potato
Retold by: Aubrey Davis
Illustrator: Dusan Petricic
Genre: European folktale
Theme(s): Community, potatoes, repetition
Opening line/sentence: “There once was a farmer who had an eye.”
Brief book summary: A farmer plants an eye and grows the world’s largest potato. He calls his wife to come help pull it out, but they are unsuccessful. The wife calls their daughter, but still they are unsuccessful, and so on it goes. Eventually they get it out and have a feast with the communi
...more
Ashton Miller
Nov 13, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Title: The Enormous Potato

Author: Aubrey Davis

Illustrator: Dušan Petričić

Genre: European Folktale

Theme: Farming, teamwork

Opening Line/Sentence: There once was a farmer who had an eye.

Brief Book Summary: A farmer plants a potato eye and it grows bigger and bigger. The farmer can’t get it out of the ground by himself, so he calls his family and some animals to help him. Eventually, they get it out of the ground and the whole town eats the potato.

Professional Recommendation/Review #1:
http://www.c
...more
Lara
It was OK, I guess. There's lots of repetition, which makes it easy to incorporate into a storytime. The illustrations are bright, but not totally my taste (not a fan of the yellow pages). Nothing really bad or good either way in those terms.

I guess my biggest problem is that there's not really a point, for lack of a better way to put it. No real lesson or moral, though it is billed as "[celebrating] co-operation and community." Didn't really pick up on that myself. No funny punch line either,
...more
Adriana Palencia
Mar 21, 2019 rated it it was amazing
I really enjoyed reading this book. The enormous potato exceeded my expectations. I was shocked to see how big the potato was. This book can be used to get children talking about the life cycle of a plant. This book can also be used to teach children about working together. The farmer wasn't able to pull the potato out from the ground, but with the help of his family helped him they were able to get the potato out of the ground.
Maliha Arman
Apr 08, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: ga-pre-k-books
This book is a lovely way to teach children the importance of coming together and working together to complete a task. This book is about a farmer that grows the biggest potato ever it was to big that he needed help from his family members and the rest of the animals on the farm. The illustrations are a fun and relating to the story, they are colorful and big enough for ages 1-5.
Goshen PL Childrens
Cuties Storytime: Folktales and Fairytales
Penney  Letbetter
Apr 16, 2019 rated it liked it
Cute story of how the Farmer and his family have to work together to pull the potato from the ground.
Dianna
Oct 24, 2017 rated it liked it
I liked that the story was told efficiently. It was repetitive, as this story is, but no words were wasted. Illustrations were not my cup of tea but they get the job done.
LoveBug BookClub
Apr 28, 2019 rated it really liked it
This was a really nice re-telling of an old folk tale. Everyone pitches in and everyone gets a nice reward. The pictures are lovely

Watch Johanna and Leeanne read this book on their YouTube channel:
https://youtu.be/1pZloAT2iAY
Lindsey
Jan 28, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: favorites
Beautiful book! I used this for one of my lesson plans as a practicum teacher in my college's preschool. The kids loved it!
Caroline
May 31, 2018 rated it really liked it
A potato grows so large that a farmer has to enlist the help of his wife, daughter, dog, cat, and mouse to get it out of the ground.

A fun interactive story.
Sierra Salyards
Feb 25, 2016 rated it liked it
Title: The Enormous Potato
Author: Aubrey Davis
Illustrator: Dušan Petričić
Genre: European Folktale
Theme(s): repetition, food, cooperation/teamwork
Opening line/sentence: "There once was a farmer who had an eye"
Brief Book Summary: A farmer plants a potato eye in the ground. For some unknown reason, the potato grows and grows until it becomes enormous. The farm must then enlist the help of his entire family to pull the potato out of the ground, and after they succeed in doing so, the townspeople com
...more
Stephen Stopper
Oct 12, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: stephen-stopper
Title: The Enormous Potato
Author: Aubrey Davis
Illustrator: Dusan Petricic
Genre: European Folktale
Theme(s): cooking, cooperation and teamwork, determination, perseverance, plants/flowers
Opening line/sentence: “There once was a farmer who had an eye.”
Brief Book Summary: This book is about a man who grows a potato. However, it gets extremely big, too big for him to pull out of the ground even. So, he calls for his wife to come help. When the two of them cannot get the potato out the wife calls for
...more
Jane G Meyer
Mar 10, 2017 rated it did not like it
Shelves: picture-books
Because The Enormous Turnip, in all its variations is so well known, I kept wondering, page after page, what the crazy, awesome twist would be at the end of this book? Would the whole town have a French Fry Festival? Would the potato explode when it was being heated? Would the potato roll down the hill, off a cliff into the sea, and create a tidal wave that then brought fish to a starving city?

But, no. The same story. They pulled up the Enormous Potato and they ate it.

Anyway. Beats me why there
...more
Macy
Nov 06, 2016 added it
Title: The Enormous Potato
Author: Aubrey Davis
Illustrator: Dusan Petricic
Genre: Folktale, Folklore
Theme(s): Farmer, Animals, working together, giving to the community
Opening line/sentence:
There once was a farmer who had an eye. It wasn’t like your eye or my eye. It was a potato eye.
Brief Book Summary:
This story is about a man who plants a potato. When he tried to pull the potato out of the ground he could not do it because the potato was just so big. His wife, his daughter, his dog, his cat, and
...more
Katelyn Bognatz
Title: The Enormous Potato

Author: Retold by Aubrey Davis

Illustrator: Dusan Petricic

Genre: Eurpean Folktale

Theme(s): folktale, repetition

Opening line/sentence: “There once was a farmer who had an eye.”

Brief book summary: Farmer planted his potato eye, which became the biggest potato in the world. The potato would not come out of the ground. They called numerous people to come help until the potato came out of the ground. Then they cooked it and served it to others around them.

Professional Recomm
...more
Ryan Hercik
Title: The Enormous Potato
Author: Aubrey Davis
Illustrator: Dusan Petricic
Genre: European Folktale
Theme(s): Teamwork, Success is reachable (Hope), Problem-solving
Opening line/sentence: There once was a farmer who had an eye.
Brief Book Summary: A farmer grew the biggest potato in the world and when it was time to pull it out he couldn’t do it himself. His wife, daughter, dog, cat, and mouse until the potato came out of the ground. When they cooked the potato everyone from town was attracted by
...more
Lynn  Davidson
Jun 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
The cumulative story goes that a farmer planted the eye of a potato and it grew a potato so big the farmer couldn't pull it out of the ground. He called his wife to help. She called their daughter, and so on. Fun illustrations.
Reana Smiley
Jul 18, 2015 rated it it was amazing
Davis, Aubrey. The Enormous Potato. Buffalo, NY: Kids Can, 1998. Print. The Enormous Potato is a book about a farmer who plants a seed and it grows into a giant potato. The farmer has to rely on his family to be able to pull the potato out of the ground. This book teaches how important and and helpful teamwork can be. When the farmer tried to pull the potato on his own, he couldn’t do it. But once he asked for help and everyone worked together to pick the potato, they were successful and the pot ...more
Jessica
Apr 18, 2011 rated it liked it
This is a classic folk tale that follows a similar storyline to many others. A farmer plants a potato eye, which grows into an enormous potato. Unable to pull it from the earth, the farmer calls his wife, who calls their daughter, who calls the dog, who calls the cat, etc. etc. It's a great book for younger readers because it uses repetition. It's a fairly simple story but is very effective and enjoyable. The illustrations are also cute, although nothing earth-shattering.

I read this book for a c
...more
Jessalyn Collins
Sep 03, 2012 rated it it was amazing
I read this book to the preschool class I work with and they loved it! This book includes a clever use of repetition. The farmer grows a potato that is so large he cannot pull it out of the ground himself. He calls his wife, who calls their daughter, who calls the dog, who calls the cat, etc. Using this repetition got the kids to interact because they knew what the key phrases were and could memorize the order of helpers. It is a great book for all ages and teaches team work. Teachers, or even c ...more
Emily
Jan 26, 2016 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
This classic folk tale retelling is a perfect story for acting out with children. Someone plays the Farmer, someone plays the Wife, someone can even play the potato! This book had myself and the group of children that I care for, wriggling, giggling and ultimately rolling on the floor in laughter as we tried and tried to pull out that enormous potato! The author’s use of repetition and the simple story line make it easy for kids to anticipate what is going to happen next. I read this story with ...more
Katlin Sims
Jun 14, 2013 rated it really liked it
This book is a great retelling of a folk tale about an enormous potato and all the people that it takes to pull it up out of the ground. It reinforces ideas about teamwork and helping other people out.

The repetitiveness of the story and the different characters that get added in along the way make this a fantastic book for children to act out! With props and/or a short script the children could act out the story during circle time or use the props in dramatic play during free time to act out th
...more
Janet
Mar 06, 2011 rated it really liked it
Aubrey Davis does a great job of selecting language that flows well when read aloud. This is a verison of the enormous turnip folk story. I especially like the beginning as the eye of the potato is planted as this is what grows the vines that form potatoes. I also liked the ending as it shows "community" when the neighbors arrive to enjoy eating the potato. The other book I read by Davis also contains a "community" ending.
Tim Nelles
Jun 04, 2016 rated it did not like it
I have read a lot of children's books for my daughter and rarely comment, but this book was awful. Each page was repeating the page before, the illustrations were printed right through the centre book seam, and the ending was the laziest I have ever read "and now the story is gone, too"... really?!?
Brooke Newberry
Apr 21, 2012 rated it it was amazing
This book doesn't look all that exciting (illustrations, words, etc.), but my storytime kids loved it! We all pretended to pull up the potato together, and repeated the refrain of everyone pulling up the potato. Lots of interaction with this book. Definitely went over better than I expected.

2/7/2012 & 2/9/2012
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I always loved to read. As a boy I had a passion for myths, bible stories, science fiction and Mad magazine. My neighbor was a writer for CBC. Maybe I caught the writing bug from him. I loved to write funny stories. My Grade six teacher liked them. But my Grade eight teacher hated them. So I stopped writing creatively until I was 42.
In 1970, I traveled across Europe and North Africa and discovered
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