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Frog and Toad #1

Frog and Toad Are Friends

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Celebrate the power of friendship in these five adventurous stories starring Frog and Toad—a Caldecott Honor Book!

From writing letters to going swimming, telling stories to finding lost buttons, Frog and Toad are always there for each other—just as best friends should be. Frog and Toad Are Friends is a Level Two I Can Read book, geared for kids who read on their own but still need a little help.

The classic Frog and Toad stories by Arnold Lobel have won numerous awards and honors, including a Newbery Honor (Frog and Toad Together), a Caldecott Honor (Frog and Toad are Friends), ALA Notable Children’s Book, Fanfare Honor List (The Horn Book), School Library Journal Best Children’s Book, and Library of Congress Children’s Book.

64 pages, Paperback

First published August 26, 1970

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About the author

Arnold Lobel

304 books464 followers
Arnold Stark Lobel was a popular American author of children's books. Among his most popular books are those of the Frog and Toad series, and Mouse Soup, which won the Garden State Children's Book Award from the New Jersey Library Association.

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5 stars
47,117 (51%)
4 stars
23,841 (26%)
3 stars
15,175 (16%)
2 stars
3,471 (3%)
1 star
1,338 (1%)
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,919 reviews
Profile Image for Julie G .
883 reviews2,742 followers
May 4, 2021
I have a friend, who I grew up with, who is convinced that Frog and Toad are gay.

My friend is a gay man, so I often accuse him of projecting his beliefs onto unsuspecting puppets like Bert and Ernie and singers like George Michael (yes, he was the first person to tell me that my future dream husband and soul mate, George Michael, was gay, and I still hate him for that scandalous lie). He claims that Frog and Toad were early role models of his, and I am fascinated by such a notion, but, I must admit, I've always thought of them less as gay and more as amphibious.

Growing up reading them, I never wondered at their possible sexuality; I could only admire them for their plucky independence (they lived alone in their own homes, with no parents!), and their freedom to stop whatever they were doing, mid-day, to sip tea with cookies (hey, maybe they were gay. . . or perhaps just British?).

Either way, I think that maybe it's enough to anthropomorphize two chapter book amphibians by giving them classic 1970s style corduroy blazers and bell bottoms. I mean, why make it more confusing than it already is?

Whatever they were, they were two relatable sort-of hippies that became iconic figures of the 1970s and have lived on through all three of my kids' childhoods.

This is a chapter book, published 51 years ago, that doesn't feel one bit dated, unless you take their clothing into consideration.
Profile Image for Diana • Book of Secrets.
780 reviews570 followers
February 22, 2020
"We will skip through the meadows and run through the woods and swim in the river. In the evenings we will sit right here on this front porch and count the stars."

One of my top three favorites from childhood. ♥ Sweet tales about friendship.

• Spring
• The Story
• A Lost Button (love the jacket of mismatched buttons!)
• A Swim
• The Letter

{Olathe Public Schools Core Literature List, Grade 2}
Profile Image for Brian.
Author 1 book978 followers
March 20, 2014
To be making books for children is to be in a sort of state of grace.
- Arnold Lobel

Books have their own special resonance in the portion of our brain that holds Nostalgia. Those stories of our youth, when the life-long joys of reading were just begin to flourish, are often some of the most special. Those of us fortunate enough to have cut our teeth on Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad series have experienced all of the great things of reading twice: the first is when we read these touching, funny and beautiful books that detail the wonderful parts of friendship; the second is recalling fondly those moments spent in Frog and Toad’s world – whether revisiting that world accessing Nostalgia or reading the stories to your children, grandchildren and seeing Frog and Toad anew through their eyes.

The Contemporary Jewish Museum here in San Francisco has hosted an exhibit on Arnold Lobel for the past few months – it closes this weekend, so today my wife, daughter and I paid a visit to the exhibit. 11:00 am on a Thursday is the right time to visit a museum; we had the entire Lobel exhibit mostly to ourselves. The Frog and Toad series was the centerpiece and included original ink drawings, notebooks of scrawled pictures and story ideas. There were finger puppets from the Mouse Soup book series for kids to enjoy, drawing tables and stacks of Lobel books. The exhibit was geared towards children, as it should be. Lobel states that he knew as a child that he was destined to write children’s books. It shows in everything he created.

If you have enjoyed the Frog and Toad series, and are reading this, I hope that the recollection of those friends brings a smile to your face. If you haven’t read them yet, now is the perfect time.

Belinda and the Mouse Soup finger puppets
Profile Image for Calista.
3,872 reviews31.2k followers
April 1, 2019
This is a beginning reader classic book. Funny, I have never read this, but I have seen this everywhere and most other people have seemed to have read this book.

It is a story about a great friendship between Toad and Frog. Frog is like the sunshine and Toad needs that sunshine. Toad likes to sleep while Frog likes to bring joy. I have a close friend and she is like Frog and I’m am like Toad. I’m always tired and want to sleep and she gets me out to do things.

The artwork is a picture on half a page. This is a lot more words. The kids enjoyed this book. There is a story where Frog and Toad go swimming and Frog takes off his clothes while Toad puts on a bathing suit which embarrasses him. The kids laughed at Frog, who got naked and they didn’t think Toad was funny. They wondered why Frog wanted to get naked. The niece thought this was a great story. She gave this 4 stars while the nephew thought this was an ok story and he gave this 3 stars.
Profile Image for Manybooks.
3,123 reviews104 followers
May 29, 2020
Well, I simply adore the supremely and sweetly cute and delightful accompanying illustrations. They are tenderly caressing and evocative, and in my opinion, they actually tell the story of frog and toad's friendship in a way that the rather simplistic narrative just does not and cannot. And yes, I also do well know that Arnold Lobel’s Frog and Toad Are Friends is considered to be a classic of American children's literature and that for many, the book likely also holds very fond and nostalgic childhood memories.

However, I have always found Arnold Lobel's presented text rather annoyingly dragging (both when I first read Frog and Toad Are Friends as a child, and when I recently reread the book for a group discussion in the Children's Literature Group's Picture Book Club). Therefore, and personally, I do think that while the narrative does manage to more than adequately show the deep friendship between frog and toad, the accompanying illustrations are actually so so much more evocative and expressive of that comradeship and certainly considerably more fun and engaging (for honestly, I was actually getting more than a bit annoyed at the many textual repetitions and at times really just wanted the stories to be over and done with). But that being said, I would still and strongly recommend Frog and Toad Are Friends as both a read-aloud and for independent first reading activities, but I truly (and very much in my opinion) cannot really see all that much in Arnold Lobel’s content and the style that is really magical or all that exciting (and in fact, I do think that forbfor me, Frog and Toad Are Friends would probably work much better as a wordless picture book).

But I do have one small (and likely revealing and important) confession to make. The very first time I read Frog and Toad Are Friends was in 1976. I was ten years old, and we had just immigrated to Canada from Germany. It was given to me as an in-class ESL reading assignment, and I felt annoyed and embarrassed that I, a grade four student, who had been reading rather lengthy German children's books for more than two years (since grade two), was suddenly placed in a position of having to read books originally conceived for much younger children (due to my lack of English). And yes, I have always wondered if that feeling of childhood embarrassment might have contributed to my rather lukewarm reaction to Frog and Toad Are Friends. However, even now, as an adult, I simply cannot get myself to really, really enjoy Arnold Lobel's writing, his text (of course, I now no longer feel that sense of embarrassment and I truly am able to appreciate the marvellous, wonderful illustrations, but the narrative of Frog and Toad Are Friends continues to feel at best a trifle ho-hum and monotonous to me).
Profile Image for Matt.
3,719 reviews12.8k followers
January 18, 2019
A delightful collection of stories that Neo could take the lead in reading and enjoying. Frog and Toad are great friends, even if they are not always on the same page where it comes to things. As Arnold Lobel explores in these five stories, they are able to help one another and find the best in any situation, without getting too troubled about anyone else. Neo quite liked the pictures and some of the funny aspects of the stories, but also found them easy to read and the plot seemed to make sense. Wonderful for the newly liberated reader, just poking their head out to try some solo efforts.
Profile Image for Bob - in & out - on assignment.
205 reviews77 followers
October 5, 2021
Frog and Toad Are Friends by Arnold Lobel
Hardcover, An "I Can Read" Book, 64 pages
Published August 26th 1970 by Harper & Row, Publishers

I'm waiting for the Richard Osman book I have on hold to come in to my library, so I pulled something off my shelves. It's 'Frog and Toad Are Friends ' - a book my daughter read over and over back in the mid 1970s when she was getting her start as a reader. Frog and Toad are friends - yes, they are! The simple lessons will hold true for ever. Toad is my main man, but, then again, so is Frog.
Profile Image for Shawn Thrasher.
1,807 reviews43 followers
June 3, 2016
Frog and Toad are my spirit animals. I love them. Sometimes, I'm Frog, who seems to be the suaver, gentler one of the pair. Mostly here though, I'm Toad, who is electrically charged and loud, can be sad for small reasons, throws occasional tantrums, and loses things.

Lobel crafted this amphibian duo with love and care, which is apparent from beginning to end. The illustrations are comforting and classic; the greens, browns, ochres, dijon mustards of the palette are perfect for this world. The plots are small and beautiful, but far from simple; each story contains a kernel of psychological truth, and even occasionally a bite. Kids will certainly understand Toad's unnecessary temper tantrum and his shyness when it comes to revealing an unflattering bathing suit or Frog's jumping and joyfulness at the beginning when all Toad wants to do is just stay in bed. I imagine parents reading this with their kids will probably see something of their kids in each and every Frog and Toad story. But I think Lobel's gentle genius is that we can see our grown up selves, not always flatteringly, in these stories too.

A must read; if you have not yet read a Frog and Toad story, go forth and do so.

Profile Image for Steph.
541 reviews269 followers
March 22, 2023
mi segundo libro leí en español! leí sapo y sepo son amigos con mi parejo (que habla excelente español). me encantó leer juntos, especialmente que libro tan acogedor y dulce.

it’s a book about love. a tender, simple sort of care. a friendship that requires only the other person, there with you, willing to stay close and help you be less alone.

the only exception is the penultimate story, in which toad is bullied by a bunch of forest animals down by the river, and frog joins in. this story felt very out of place among the others.

overall, highly recommended if you need something simple, gentle, and emotionally restorative.
Profile Image for Kathryn.
4,240 reviews
February 7, 2012
Haha, oh, gosh, I can SO relate to that sometimes ;-) And to poor Toad, looking all over for his missing button, finding many others but not his! But, the nice thing is, he has his best friend Frog to help him look. And when he finds out he has caused Frog a big inconvenience, Toad does something very nice for his friend.

This beautiful give-and-take of friendship is so masterfully captured in Arnold Lobel's charming classic. I loved Frog and Toad when I was little, and I love them now. I can so relate to both their personalities and how they compliment one another so well. (They remind me a bit of Bert and Ernie, from "Sesame Street", whom my childhood self also love for the same reasons.) I wanted to give poor old Toad a big hug and tell him to stop being such a grump, and I wanted to invite Frog over to bring some of his cheery spirit to my day. Yet, beneath the grumbly exterior, Toad has a good heart and always looks out for his friend.

My favorite chapters were the aforementioned "The Lost Button" as well as the final chapter, "The Letter" (since I love getting letters, I so sympathized with poor Toad; though I also have a few good friends who do send me letters, thank goodness!) It was so sweet and poignant. I really marvel at children's book authors, who can convey so much with so few words. The illustrations are also utterly charming.

(The only chapter I wasn't a huge fan of was "A Swim" because, while I could see the humor and understand that sometimes it is very hard to resist laughing at something absurd (and the little "moral of the story" that Toad brought the attention on himself by being so concerned about how he looked, I'm not sure I liked that Frog did laugh at him.)

All in all, highly recommended and a great book about friendship!

Profile Image for Sophie Crane.
3,714 reviews121 followers
April 4, 2020
Great characters, written in an easy to follow style. This books has a number of different stories with lovely illustrations and gentle humour. We love it.
Profile Image for Greg.
70 reviews73 followers
August 29, 2007
I miss quiet cheerfulness like Frog and Toad. I enjoyed very much the whole 15 minutes it took me to read the 5 stories in here.
I couldn't read it to the kids at my job (the story is geared toward much younger children than those who would understand the book as esl learners), which is a shame. That said, it merits repeated reading as an adult. It cheered me up darned well.
Yes, it's cowardly to give a Caldecott Honor book five stars. It was fun. I wish I had a friend like this. It's been a good 14 years or so.
Profile Image for Amar Pai.
960 reviews101 followers
September 13, 2012
There's one story where Toad and Frog go swimming. Toad can't go in the water without a swimsuit, for some reason, and he's embarrassed by how he looks in it, so he makes Frog look the other way while Toad gets dressed and jumps in the water. Later when it's time to come out Toad tells Frog to look away, but then a mouse overhears and the mouse's ears perk up at the sound of potential embarrassment. "Ooh I gotta see this!" More and more animals are drawn by the prospect of a spectacle, until seemingly the whole forest is amassed at the edge of the river waiting for Toad to come out. Toad tries to outwait them, but eventually he has to come out. So he climbs out, and all the animals laugh at his silly bathing suit and how funny he looks. Toad walks home to change.


That's kind of a messed up story, isn't it? What's the point? To teach kids that if you're a funny looking unpopular weirdo, you should expect to be mocked, teased and/or publicly humiliated?

Hang in there Toad, revenge is a dish best served cold. Also, living well is the best revenge. Finally, a stitch in time saves nine.
Profile Image for — nova.
442 reviews323 followers
March 21, 2022
Whenever I hit a reading slump, there are a few different things I do depending on what kind of reading slump I’m in (because, yes, there are different levels.) If I don’t feel like reading, then I don’t. I do other things & try not to push it (unless it’s been too long and I’m getting behind on my reading goal, then I might try one of the other things.) If I do want to read, but nothing is holding my attention, I usually turn to graphic novels, comic books & manga, because I’m almost always in the mood to read those. But sometimes, when all else fails, and not even Wonder Woman can hold my attention, I turn to kids books. I LOVE reading children’s books. I like adding them to the list in my head titled: “Books I Want To Read To/With My Future Children” and I dream of the day where I’ll own them all and have a cute little bookshelf for my kids. So if there’s ever a point where you’re like “wow, they’ve been reading a lot of kids books” ....it’s probably because it’s the only thing I can read at the moment, & I’m just working my way out of a slump.

I loved the Frog & Toad books when I was a kid. I don’t remember how I was introduced to them, but it probably had to do with my love for frogs & toads. (I’ve owned my share of both over the years.) And my mom had a knack for finding me silly books to read, since I devoured them so eagerly. But one of the great things about , Frog and Toad Are Friends and rereading it, is I have a new appreciation for it.

First off, Frog and Toad are friendship goals, taking care of each other when they’re sick, helping look for lost things no matter how long it takes. At one point, they went swimming and Toad thought he looked funny in his bathing suit so he made Frog promise not to look – Frog didn’t, and even went so far as to tell other animals to leave the pond so they wouldn’t see Toad in his swimming suit. And in the last chapter, Toad is sad because he never gets any mail (same, Toad, same; it’s always bills) & so Frog goes home & writes him a letter.

This is just a cute book, and it makes me feel nostalgic.
Profile Image for Julie.
237 reviews6 followers
March 24, 2008
Toad the not-zen gardener yells at his seeds "Now seeds, start growing!"
That is just about where I am with all my plans in life.
Yep, me with a little pitchfork prodding inanimate objects while yelling, "Move it!"

I find something new every time I reread Arnold Lobel.

Profile Image for Lisa Vegan.
2,759 reviews1,218 followers
March 10, 2012
This is an “I Can Read Book” level 2 (High-interest stories for developing readers) children’s picture book that has 64 pages and 5 chapters.

I would have adored this book when I was a beginning reader, but unfortunately it was published 10-12 years too late. I’d assumed I’d read the Frog and Toad books but after just reading this first book, I’m thinking it was my first time reading it.

Thanks to the Children's Books group for alerting me to it. I’ve found so many worthy picture books and novel because of this group, its book clubs and also its members’ message posts in the discussion threads.

This story is sweet and amusing, at times bordering on being hilarious, as I know I might have giggled at parts when I was 6 and 7 years old, and it’s extremely engaging. Frog and toad are both memorable characters, almost opposites who are best friends. There are so many wonderful lines, and although gentle and slow, quite a few different things happen in this story. There is nothing boring about it.

The illustrations are wonderful too, really superb. I have to say that Toad’s bed looks very comfy, and I love how frog and toad are each so distinctive looking.

I haven’t read the other books in the series yet, but I can see giving a boxed set to 4-8 year old children, particularly those who are able to read them independently, although this book would also be fun as a read aloud, for both reader and listener/viewer.

I’m not one whit surprised that this book has become a classic. I understand why more than one generation of children has enjoyed it and I think it’s timeless enough to last, and this is one that can be equally appreciated by both girls and boys.

4 ½ stars
Profile Image for Ronyell.
955 reviews322 followers
June 7, 2010
“Frog and Toad Are Friends” is a Caldecott Honor Book from Arnold Lobel about two amphibian pals, Frog and Toad who go through life together. “Frog and Toad Are Friends” is definitely a brilliant introduction to the “Frog and Toad” series that children will love!

Arnold Lobel’s book about true friendship has truly deserved the honorable Caldecott Honor award. Arnold Lobel makes this story truly delightful as he pairs up Frog, a free-spirited character with Toad, a somewhat grumpy yet caring character, with each other and makes them the most memorable odd-couple duo in children’s book history. Arnold Lobel teaches children about the power of true friendship as Frog and Toad, though they have different personalities, would go through everything life together and still remain to be the best of friends, which will encourage many children to stay true to their friends no matter what obstacles come their way. Arnold Lobel’s illustrations are truly beautiful and simple as Frog is drawn to be taller than Toad and is green and wears a jacket and a pair of pants while Toad is shorter than Frog and is brown and also wears a jacket and a pair of pants. The images that stood out the most in this book are the images of Frog and Toad’s expressions as Frog always has a happy expression on his face while Toad always has a grumpy expression on his face.

“Frog and Toad Are Friends” is a brilliant and cute book about true friendship that many children will cherished for many years. I would recommend this book to children ages four and up since there is no inappropriate content for small children.
Profile Image for Susan.
Author 3 books5 followers
January 20, 2008

There's Lucy and Ethel, there's Felix and Oscar, there's George and Martha, and there's Frog and Toad. Another great pair. Shelved in the easy reader section of the library (or stashed on our bookshelves in a horribly disorganized manner at home), these books rise above so many of the learn how to read books because of the stories and characters. Nothing is sacrificed to easy vocabulary. These are great stories - funny, poignant, silly - stories that are a great reward to parents because they can enjoy them while they help their fresh young readers stagger across the sentences.
Profile Image for Lauren Hegedus.
206 reviews6 followers
June 10, 2021
Since I’ve decided to base my entire aesthetic/personality on this book, I figured that I should actually read it. I can *officially* confirm that I am Toad, and I am now accepting applications for Frog. Serious inquiries only.
Profile Image for Belinda Vlasbaard.
3,269 reviews55 followers
June 22, 2022
4 sterren - Nederlandse paperback

This book is a classic. One of my very first books that I loved reading as a Nanny in England. I was an avid reader and enjoyed laughing at the adventures of frog and toad. They taught me at a young age about the value of friendship.

It is for children young and old, and the main theme that runs through it is friendship. This just shows me how important books are to children, you never know what will spark their heart and stay with them. Read this classic to your child and let them treasure it in their heart, not knowing what it may lead too!
Profile Image for David.
579 reviews137 followers
November 28, 2020
Nice simple words for kids learning to read. All stories revolve about these two dedicated friends. This librarian remarked to me that her 13 year old daughter asked to go see "Frog and Toad" as a play, that had slightly pricey seats, but she caved in. Then the performance reduced her almost to tears it was so good. This book promotes the value of true friendship.
Profile Image for Dee.
37 reviews20 followers
February 6, 2020
Ah nostalgia is hitting me. Going back to school to volunteer for some storytelling and this might be a good place to start off.
Profile Image for Tatiana.
839 reviews59 followers
February 8, 2013
Through five engaging stories, the friendship between Frog and Toad is on display as they look for lost buttons, greet spring weather, and wait for mail. Each simple plot is resolved in a few pages, usually through a clever manner: the buttons are refashioned as embellishments on Frog’s jacket, Toad finally wakes up in time to enjoy spring, and Toad receives the best pen pal he could ask for: his friend, Frog.

The text features short sentences with both monosyllabic and multisyllabic words, and some specialty words (“November” and “sparrow”). Repetition of words and phrases, without rhyming, within each short story encourages independent reading for emerging readers. Animal personification is obviously a characteristic of the Frog and Toad Series, as is large print, chapter-like divisions, and decorative illustrations that are sure to engage younger students.
Displaying 1 - 30 of 1,919 reviews

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