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Precious and the Boo Hag
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Precious and the Boo Hag

4.11  ·  Rating details ·  219 Ratings  ·  63 Reviews
When Precious is left home alone with a stomachache, she's got nothing but a warning from Mama -- "Don't let nothing or nobody into this house" -- to keep her company. You see, "nothing or nobody" could turn out to be something awful: the Boo Hag! The Boo Hag's got a voice that rumbles like thunder and hair that shoots out like lightning. And she can disguise herself to lo ...more
Hardcover, 40 pages
Published January 1st 2005 by Atheneum Books for Young Readers
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Rating details
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Robin Yardi
Nov 01, 2014 rated it it was amazing
I read this on Halloween in the public library. It was spooky, spunky, and filled with luscious language. I think it's perfect for bigger kids who still love to listen to picture books while sprawled across laps like overgrown weeds
The boo hag's tricks have kids sitting on the edge, squirming in anticipation that the boo hag might get in. Lately, I measure how to rate a picture book by how eagerly and enthusiastically the kids respond to story and the illustrations.
The kids LOVED this book.
One young girl hung back after the group was dismissed to shyly and worryingly ask, "But, is the boo hag real?"
Emily Newcomer
Feb 11, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Precious and the Boo Hag is a fun story about an obedient and clever girl whose come face to face with temptation in the form of the Boo Hag. The accurate and respectful use of AAL in this story makes it even better.
Margaret Boling
11/4/2017 ** So...was there really a boo hag?
Sep 15, 2012 rated it it was amazing

I would classify this book as a Traditional picture book.

Summary: Precious has a stomachache and as a result is unable to go with her family to work in the corn fields. She is being left home alone with the important instruction from her mother that she let absolutely no one in the ho use. Her brother lets her know just as he is leaving that she better mind their mother because Pruella the Boo Hag may try to come in the house, because she encourages disobedience, and she is mean and can change h
Jordan Smith
Sep 23, 2015 added it
Shelves: folk
Summary: This story represents the African American culture and in this story, a young girl, Precious, has a stomachache so she decides to stay home alone while the rest of her family goes out to plant corn in the corn fields. Before her mother and brother leave for the corn fields, they both tell her not to open the door and let anyone in the house. Precious’ brother warns his sister that the Boo Hag will try to get into the house, but to make sure that she does not let Boo Hag in because she t ...more
Dec 07, 2015 rated it really liked it
Precious is left home alone with a stomach ache and her mother tells her not to let anyone in no matter what. Her brother told her about Pruella the Boo Hag who will do absolutely anything to try and get in the house. Surely enough throughout the night and day Pruella the Boo Hag tries playing tricks on her, disguising as other people trying to get inside the house. Precious is too smart to fall for Pruella’s tricks though and successfully survives being home alone until her mother returns.
I re
Kaytlyn Witcher
Sep 30, 2015 added it
Shelves: folk
Precious and the Boo Hag is about a little girl named Precious. Precious stays home alone with a stomachache while the family works in the fields. Mama leaves Precious with a warning "Don't let nothing and nobody in this house" and Brother slyly adds that if Precious does let someone in the house, it may well turn out to be Pruella the Boo Hag. Precious tries to reassure herself that there's no such thing as the Boo Hag, suddenly the honeysuckle wilts on the vine and the sunny day turns dark. A ...more
Britt Kitko
Oct 07, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Precious has to stay home alone with a stomachache while the rest of her family goes out to work in the fields. Her mother warns her to not let anyone into the house while they are away and she plans to obey. Her brother tells her that a Boo Hag named Pruella is tricky, scary, and likes to try to get people to disobey their mothers. Precious is afraid of her at first, but is able to outwit her when she makes several attempts at getting into the house. In the end, Precious and her family
Precious was up all night with a stomach ache, but the rest of the family can't take off work, so she has to stay home all alone for the day. Clearly feeling better, Precious is enjoying her day alone although she's a little worried because her brother warned her about Pruella the Boo Hag. Sure enough Pruella comes to call, but Precious manages to outsmart her each time. Kyrsten Brooker's illustrations are done in collage and oil paints with browns and blues dominating. The two page spreads are ...more
Feb 04, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Fun and a little bit of a scary read aloud that kept the kids interest. It has a multicultural, folklore feel and the language was fun to share...whoppers, vanished & all kinds of other juicy words + phrases. This is a story about facing fear and not letting fear manipulate you. Also, it showed how Precious was determined to follow the rules under pressure. She was clever, brave, and sang a song that the kids enjoyed singing. This book surprised me because i picked it on a whim from a pile o ...more
Kristi Bernard
Sep 05, 2010 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: multicultural
Precious had a stomach ache and couldn't help with the planting of the corn. Mama and brother had to go to work. Mama left her with specific instructions as to what she could and could not touch. Brother on the other hand left her with a story of Pruella the Boo Hag.

Her brother goes on to tell her not to let anyone in the house no matter what. A Boo Hag can disguise herself as anything and if you let her in terrible things will happen. All day Precious feared the Boo Hag story. When the Boo Hag
Ashley Cochran
This book is about a little girl who is sick one day. Her mom and brother have to go work in the field so they leave her by her self at their house. Before they leave, the mom tells her not to let anyone in the house and the brother tells her not to let anyone, even the Boo Hag, in the house. The little girl gets tested all day by all kinds of trials. By the time her mom and brother get home, she had followed all their directions and is rewarded. I would use this in my classroom to show the stu ...more
Jan 09, 2016 rated it really liked it
Loved and love reading this to my daughter. She is entranced.
Precious is sick so has to stay at home while her family goes to work in the fields. Her mother tells her not to let "nothing and nobody" in and her brother warns her of the Boo Hag, who will do anything to get in her house. Precious is scared but stands her ground when the Boo Hag tries several ways to get in.
Great pictures, good story about a girl being brave and smart in the face of her fear.
My daughter (and other kids, probably) i
Nov 07, 2009 rated it really liked it
Precious is a real heroine, being brave and clever and - thankfully - sensible. She doesn't let anybody into the house, which is just the way it should be. I could read this book again and again with my nieces.

It *is* a little scary - if you have a sensitive child, read this book before buying it. Also, the characters do not speak Standard American English but use a nonstandard dialect - "Boo Hags aine too smart", for example. This does not concern me - I think it's better to expose children to
Sep 15, 2008 rated it really liked it
Delightful, colorful illustrations accompany this story about conquering fear among children. Precious is home with a stomachache while her family is off planting corn. Her mother warns her not to let anyone in, while her brother teases and scares her with a story of a mean and wicked Boo Hag. In Precious's mind, a Boo Hag disguises herself in all sorts of ways, but Precious doesn't get fooled. Mama is proud of her, at the end of the day, when she learns that Precious kept her word, and didn't l ...more
Cassie LOVES this book. While its illustrations are still based in the surreal world of cartoons, the African American female protagonist (as well as the other characters) are based in a type of reality that reflects her own image. However, this is the type of book ALL kids should be reading, especially the non-African American female ones, to promote their understanding of different images of people!
Dec 03, 2010 rated it really liked it
This is about a girl left home. Her mom went into the field.The girl friend came over but it really was the boo Hag. She Had all kinds of ways to Get into the house. Precious let her in. She tried to eat precious. Precious found a way too get her out. Her mom came home Finally.

This book was ok. I really engoyed this book. I think The girl shouldnt let nobody into the house.
I think the girl should of listened to to her mom. This was a very good book.
Demi Sienna
Oct 15, 2014 rated it really liked it
This is a fun-filled family story about a little girl left home alone. She lets her vivid imagination take over and creates a scary situation. It is really funny to watch her struggle through her time alone at home. Children will love this very colorful and easy to read story. The book is multicultural and developmentally appropriate. It also falls under my topic.
Jul 07, 2015 rated it liked it
"My mama told me not to open the door for nothing and nobody!". Hah - this made me laugh out loud because I knew Precious was serious about not opening that door. Being left home with a stomachache, Precious is under strict instructions. And Pruella, the Boo Hag is pulling out all the stops to get in. Patricia C. McKissack and Onawumi Jean Moss offer us a very animated and spirited story.
Kimberly OutspokenMom
Apr 13, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: childrens
While Pruella is tricky and troublesome, she is the kind of creature that children will find amusing with just a hint of creepiness. The antics in the book will keep readers on their toes throughout the story. The illustrations have a down-home and inviting feel that further enhance the book. This is a wonderful book that is sure to please.
Precious is home sick and her brother tells her bad stories about the boo hag who tricks you to let her in the house. Precious listens to her mother, who told her not to let anyone in and she doesnt let the boo hag in
Precious and the Boo Hag is wonderful picture book with gorgeous prose and beautiful pictures. I loved this book based on African American folklore that is fun for all ages. A quick and fun read that is sure to delight at bedtime.
Sharlet Mullen
Apr 11, 2013 rated it it was ok
Shelves: modern-fantasy
Precious is home sick and her brother tells her bad stories about the boo hag who tricks you to let her in the house. Precious listens to her mother, who told her not to let anyone in and she doesn't let the boo hag in. I would not have this book in my classroom.
I know the boo hag is a traditional folk monster, like maybe the La Llorona of the black South? I didn't grow up reading or hearing about her, just read about her once in a Virginia Hamilton book. This makes me want to read more.

Also, never heard of this illustrator before, but I like her!
Oct 28, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Fabulously fun, scary read-aloud! Kids are at the edge of their seats--frightened that Precious will be outwitted by the tricky Boo Hag. Good to teach concept of folklore/oral storytelling tradition. The folksy illustrations are well suited to the genre.
Jan 27, 2015 rated it it was ok
Shelves: 2-stars
What did I like about this book...well...I liked when it was over! It has a mystical voodoo feel to it that I didn't like. This Mysterious Boo-Hag sounds like a tactic to scare kids...I don't like the premise of scaring kids to be good.

Read it don't read aren't missing anything!
Jan 31, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: Colleen Bethel, Julianna Cucci
Shelves: picture-books
We love this book. It's really fun to read with a group of kids so that they can help Precious keep the Boo Hag away by singing the refrain: Pruella is a Boo Hag--she was right outside my window. She's tricky and she's scary, but I won't/didn't let her in!"
Little Miss and the Legomeister
I expected to like this one more than I did.

The art is interesting, the story cute. It's a bit scary, but Precious stays safe the entire time. She's brave and smart. It's a fun, folk tale type story.
Kiana Sims
I personally would never have this book in my classroom. I think it's a stereotypical way to portray blacks. There's a lot of broken english and it gives the impression that all black people from the South act a certain way.
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Patricia C. McKissack was the Newbery Honor, Coretta Scott King Award-winning author of The Dark-Thirty and Porch Lies an ALA Notable Book. She collaborated with Jerry Pinkney on Goin' Someplace Special (Coretta Scott King Award winner) and Mirandy and Brother Wind (Coretta Scott King Award winner and Caldecott Honor Book).
More about Patricia C. McKissack