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The Cook and the King

3.79  ·  Rating details ·  227 ratings  ·  49 reviews
There once was a very hungry king Who needed a cook like anything . . . . . . but the king is very fussy; he tries all the cooks in the kingdom, but no one is good enough. Then he spots Wobbly Bob. Maybe Bob can whip up his favourite dinner? But how will Bob be able to cook for the king when he's scared of . . . well, everything?! Discover how the hungry king helps Wobbly ...more
Paperback, 32 pages
Published February 12th 2019 by Macmillan Children's Books (first published 2018)
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Average rating 3.79  · 
Rating details
 ·  227 ratings  ·  49 reviews

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Melissa (Mel’s Bookshelf)
As soon as I saw this was so excited to see it was written by Julia Donaldson! My kids absolutely adore her books. And as suspected, my son (and even my 1 year old daughter) loved reading it! It is now the number one requested book in our house! I have had to read it to them twice today already!

The hungry king needs a new cook! But Wobbly Bob is a bit scared. Of EVERYTHING! Will he get the job of the new cook even though he seems to be too scared to even cut chips?

Its a cute and delightful witty
Apr 13, 2019 rated it liked it  ·  review of another edition
Another good story from the prolific pen of Julia Donaldson - this time accompanied by fun illustrations by David Roberts.

Written in Donaldson's usual accomplished style, but without the illustrations normally provided by her usual collaborator Axel Scheffler - this somehow lacks the magic of classic Donaldson/Scheffler.

A fun and entertaining read though.
May 24, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I might be getting old but I haven’t regressed into children’s story books and one single verb sentences.
Old folk were kids however, some even had the delight of reading to their children and in later life still the joy of sharing books with grandchildren.
Julia Donaldson is a recognised author of children’s stories. The Gruffalo being one most kids know without fail. So we are talking about a writer with some nous and clout. It seems her skills of making up stories has been passed onto her son
Review to come.

It's a cute little story with a good rhythm, but there seems to be something lacking in terms of what we have come to expect from Julia's work.

It's still good fun and kids will still enjoy it, but it's not up there with some of her other work.

This would be a good one for Donaldson's younger fans, as there is quite a lot of repetition, with the same routine (and similar wording) - of the king telling the cook what to do, the cook saying how scared he was, and the king doing the job
I saw where it was going fairly early on, but it was really enjoyable and entertaining watching it unfold, despite the fact that I HATE RHYMING BOOKS.
Jul 09, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: for-alena
This is the favorite of the books I've read to Alena the past two days. It's funny. I like the illustrations. I would like to read more by this author and illustrator.
This is really cute and I love the illustrations style.
Allie Outhouse
Aug 01, 2019 rated it did not like it  ·  review of another edition
Poor rhyming, syntax, plot and illustrations were not my cup of tea. "Like anything" is not the most appealing descriptor, particularly for the elected activities.
Beth Rodgers
Oct 05, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
'The Cook and the King' by Julia Donaldson, illustrated by David Roberts, is a cute story that shows how working together, and sometimes working alone with someone by your side, can lead to success. When the King hires Wobbly Bob to be his new cook, he gets more than he bargained for. Wobbly Bob tells the King from the moment he is hired that he is a “bit of a wimp” but would love the job. The King, eager to have someone fill the position, takes Bob on, but soon he finds himself catching the ...more
Marathon County Public Library
In this new fairy tale, a hungry king needs to find a cook. After trying many cooks and rejecting them all, he ends up with Wobbly Bob. The king then asks for his favorite dish—fish and chips—but Wobbly Bob is “terribly scared” about every aspect of food preparation. The king looks sympathetically on the shaking cook and helps him to prepare the meal. Through the pictures, readers see that the king really enjoys catching the fish and chopping up potatoes for chips. When they finally sit down to ...more
A king in search of a royal cook auditions a chef who is afraid of everything, and together they make fish and chips.

Set in a pseudo-medieval kingdom, a finicky king is unable to find a cook to his liking until Wobbly Bob applies for the job. To test his culinary skills, the king requests he make fish and chips, and Wobbly Bob is so nervous that the king agrees to help him. His majesty ends up doing most of the work without realizing it. Naturally, he is pleased with the meal and hires Wobbly
Cute picture book that is a twist on the Little Red Hen. Hungry king doesn't like any of the dishes various cooks serve him. He tries out another cook, who is a "wimp", and the wimp gets the king to do all of the prep work, AND the cooking. At the end, the cook, still clueless, shares the meal with the cook and hires him.

Illustrations by David Roberts (of Rosie Revere Engineer fame) are awesome. Lots of movement, lots to look at and explore. They follow the story well.

My only hesitation about
In this humorous, rhyming book, a king shows off cooking skills he doesn't know he has. Great illustrations and a classic feel.

Veg*n parents note: The major storyline involves preparing fish and chips. We see the cook and the king going out to see on a boat and capturing fishes in a net. Later, we see dead fish (with X-ed out eyes) being fried in a pan. Finally, the fish are eaten by the cook and the king. Veg*n families may want to preview this one and decide if they'd rather choose a book that
Jul 19, 2019 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Another rip-snorter from Ms. Donaldson, and nice to see her words visualised by a different artist this time. The kids (and wife) loved this book like anything. Almost as much as the Gruffalo. By the time we needed to return it to the library, Jack had memorised the text in record time. (He has a great stalling technique too – asking me to identify everything in the garden in the “dig” two-page spread). Interesting story to go with the rhymes, too, ripe for lots of contextual analysis. 10/10
Cara Byrne
Oct 03, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
"There once was a very hungry king/Who needed a cook like anything./So he tried out lots and lots of cooks/With their pots and their pans and their how-to-cook books." And so starts a book about a king who desperately wants to find a cook who can prepare a meal to his liking, but with time, readers learn that if you want something done to your exact liking, you should do it yourself. A sweet story, though it doesn't flow as easily as some of Donaldson's other books.
May 26, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
It will only take the adult reading this to their child until halfway to know the real moral behind the story, but rest assured this is such a wonderful book they'd better get used to it, as they'll be reading it more than a few times. I might not have given the artwork itself a full five stars – rather a decent four, with some fun details – but the bounce of the rhyming text and the fun of the simple tale come with timeless appeal.
Lee Peckover
Jul 13, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
This is a nicely illustrated and well written quick read that young children will definitely enjoy.

There is nothing revolutionary going on here and this isn't one of Julia Donaldson's finest works but none of that really matters when it's a book children will enjoy and will want to read again and again.
This has a nice story line about a chef who pushes himself and I still it helping some of my children who feel anxious or scared by certain things that may be holding them back from what they want to do. I really enjoyed the illustrations as they were commercial and told a story in themselves.
Sep 17, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
In this tale we meet a very hungry king and a scaredy cat cook.

While I enjoyed reading this book I found the cook to be slightly to whiney. I realised that I wanted to spend more time with the king.

The king might be hungry and is looking for a cook, but the king is a really good cook.
Jul 28, 2018 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: melanie
This is a very cute and beautifully illustrated picture book with rhymed sentences that bring little readers to explore the fear of the cook and the need of the king. I love how the author reverses the role of the king and cook that brings surprises and laughters. A great book to share with kids.
Jun 02, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books, humor
Not as wonderful as her previous books, but still a pretty solid humorous tale. Recommended for ages 4-6.
May 13, 2019 rated it it was ok  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
The king assists a nervous cook and discovers his own culinary talents.
The basic plot is amusing but this lacks Donaldson's usual story spinning.
Another amusing read from Julia Donaldson about a very hungry king in search of a new chef. This picture book embraces role-reversal, sharing and friendship :)
Rebecca Gomez
Delightful and silly.
June 2019 - the bouncing rhymes and funny story that you expect from Donaldson, and fun pictures (we enjoyed looking for the mouse on each page).
Lindsay Paige
I loved this book!
Alyssa Gudenburr
A very silly book about a king who is looking for the perfect cook. This would be a good read aloud for lower elementary children.
May 13, 2019 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: picture-books
A king needs a cook and finds someone who might be able to do the job!
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Growing up
I grew up in a tall Victorian London house with my parents, grandmother, aunt, uncle, younger sister Mary and cat Geoffrey (who was really a prince in disguise. Mary and I would argue about which of us would marry him).

Mary and I were always creating imaginary characters and mimicking real ones, and I used to write shows and choreograph ballets for us. A wind-up gramophone wafted out