Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “Max's Words” as Want to Read:
Max's Words
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

Max's Words

4.21  ·  Rating details ·  865 ratings  ·  162 reviews
Max’s brothers have grand collections that everyone makes a big fuss over. Benjamin collects stamps and Karl collects coins, and neither one will share with their little brother. So Max decides to start a collection of his own. He’s going to collect words. He starts with small words that he cuts out of newspapers and magazines, but soon his collection has spilled out into ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published August 8th 2006 by Farrar, Straus and Giroux (BYR)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

To see what your friends thought of this book, please sign up.

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.21  · 
Rating details
 ·  865 ratings  ·  162 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of Max's Words
Jan 12, 2014 rated it really liked it
I wasn't totally happy with the frame narrative of the older brothers and their collecting, and how the author seems to disparage them -- it doesn't seem necessary to put down one hobby to make another look better -- but otherwise this story of a small boy who begins to play with words was quote good, especially for something that is clearly intended to be of educational value.

My favorite aspect of the story was the part where the brothers collaborate on making a story from the piles of words.
Nov 10, 2009 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: monarch-award
Banks illustrations are fabulous! I loved this book, my kids and I have already read it twice and each time we have found something that we missed when we read it the first time. The illustrations jump out at you and defiantly caught our eye. I love when the words become the pictures it really helped my children associate words with the picture if they were not familiar with them.

Max stood out with his red, spiky hair right at the beginning of this book. On the first page he was on the side of
Grades K-3
Max's brothers collect stamps and coins, and they will not share their collections. Max decides to collect words. At first his words are small: at, but, the, but then his collection grows to include the words of his favorite colors, food, and animals. He starts collecting words he doesn't know, and soon, he begins writing stories. This book has an enjoyable plot and is a metaphor for learning to read and write. This is an exploration of how words can be combined and manipulated to form
Olivia Bailey
Nov 11, 2011 rated it really liked it
I loved this book. I would use this just as max did. I would have the students cut out words they know from magazines ( words they like, ate, played with, etc). Then I would challenge them to from word they dont know and look them up so it can be words they do know. While finding words they dont know, they will find more words that they do know. Next I would have them make sentences with the piles of words they have. Then they could turn thier sentences into stories. I love that this helps ...more
Jasmine Stocker
Sep 06, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Max’s Brothers both collect items and Max is feeling a little left out. He decides to collect words, one word leads to another until Max has a story worth telling. This book aids in language development and makes writing stories seem fun. Would be a great book to read to students who are learning to write sentences and trying to differentiate sentence set-up.
Dec 29, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-book
Good book. I enjoyed it and found it clever, but my 6-8th graders weren’t too interested in this one (I was using it as a hook for a word project we were doing)... On the other hand, my friend, who teaches 3rd grade, said her kids loved it. So it’s probably just the age group. It’s a clever story, so I recommend it for elementary grades.
Syeda Nasir
Jul 11, 2018 rated it liked it
Max’s Words is characterized as a work of non-fiction that falls into the Arts & Leisure category. It is designed particularly for children who are between ages five and eight. This book is about a little boy, named Max, who sees that his brothers have grand collections; Benjamin collects stamps while Karl collects coins. When Max requests to have a stamp or a coin, neither is willing to share with him so Max decides to collect words himself.
In consideration to the organization of the book,
Apr 28, 2014 rated it liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Oct 31, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children-s-books
I loved this book. I loved the story. I didn't think the older brothers got "put down" as described in some reviews. I just thought that there was one brother (of three) who hadn't found his niche and his passion as soon as his siblings had. But then he found it. And it was as good as his brothers'. I loved that. This is an important topic for children. Finding one's "pursuit" is an important step in figuring out who one is. I think this is a worthy and important book. The illustrations are ...more
Nov 18, 2019 rated it really liked it
Max's older brothers collect stamps and coins. Max wants to collect something too. He decides to collect words and uses them to make up stories. Soon his brothers want to help him make up stories and want some of his words so that they can make up their own stories. I love this book, maybe because I like to collect things myself. This book could be used to introduce the topic of collections. Children could write about what they like to collect or would like to collect. One of the literacy ...more
Aug 13, 2017 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books
Max wants a collection like his older brothers (one has stamps and the other has coins). Neither will give him anything from their collections. He decides he will start his own and it will be words. He is using the words to make a story and his brothers join in. Eventually they trade a coin and a stamp for some of Max's words.
CreateEveryday Classroom
Dec 07, 2017 rated it really liked it
what a splendid idea! making the act of collecting words more appealing (and exciting!) than almost anything. I highly recommend this book for young children who are on the verge of reading. An enjoyable read aloud book at anytime too.

I must say, though, I miss Georg who used to illustrate Kate Banks' books!
Chance Lee
Jan 24, 2018 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-it
I like the story about a boy who collects words to make a story. But I find the art unappealing. The characters have big lifeless eyes, oddly proportioned noses, and are depicted from unusual angles.
Lynn  Davidson
May 03, 2018 rated it really liked it
Max's brothers collected coins and stamps but they wouldn't share with Max. Wanting to collect something,too, Max decided on words. His brothers scoffed until they saw what he could do with words. A beautiful story with wonderful illustrations.
Jul 16, 2018 rated it really liked it
Max's brothers collect stamps and coins and they won't let him play with the collection. Max decides to collect words. Stamps and coins don't do anything, but words make stories. Good to use in the classroom for word building
Sam Weigert
Good book for vocabulary of young students. Great for language development.
Trevor Rau
Sep 06, 2019 rated it liked it
Shelves: 25-picture-books
I like how Max decides to collect words and begins to make stories out of them. He gets the stamp and coin from his friends when they want to take some of his words.
Sep 14, 2017 rated it really liked it
2010 Monarch Award Nominee. Great story about the power of words.
Christine Grant
Dec 10, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: storytime
Countdown to Kindergarten: Letter X.

Oh the power of words!
A beautiful story illustrating the power of words. It also highlights the importance of sharing and the fun of collecting.
Magnificent example of the magic of words and how they create stories that can carry us away! I love the dynamics of Max's brothers.
Mar 15, 2019 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: read-alouds
If you're going to collect something, why not collect words? Follow Max as he discovers and explores his new collection.
Tonya Shaw
Nov 15, 2018 rated it really liked it
Great book to hook kids for a vocabulary lesson! I loved the illustrations and when I shared it in class, my students found things I had missed. Definitely one I will read again in the future!
Jamie Reynolds Spellerberg
Dec 22, 2018 rated it it was amazing
Great for vocabulary motivation.
This book is fantastic! I love the creativity of the boy writing a story within the story!
Kris Dersch
It's fine, with old timey illustrations, but honestly it's just not as good as The Word Collector. And there was too much sibling rivalry.
Grant Thomas
Max wants to collect something like his brothers, so he begins collecting words.
Mar 17, 2017 rated it really liked it
I loved this book and shared it with my class. Max's brothers each have collections. He decides to collect words. After he wrote a story using his words, his two brothers wanted more stories. His brothers decided to share their collections so that Max would keep sharing. I love how he used words from magazines and newspapers to put his story together.
Nathaniel Chattic
Grades: K-4th

Author Kate Banks creates a "story within a story" within the pages of this book. The use of text and space here is cleverly inventive. I enjoyed the creativity of layout by using the text to serve as a template for Max's word collection, to the point where the main text is telling Max's story. In addition, Boris Kulikov uses a combination of realism and detail with elements of asymmetric balance (with Max and his Alligator friend, and the Crocodile and little Snake in his story)and
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 next »
There are no discussion topics on this book yet. Be the first to start one »

Readers also enjoyed

  • There's a Wocket in My Pocket!
  • Diary of a Worm
  • The Good Egg (The Bad Seed, #2)
  • Perfect Square
  • The Proudest Blue
  • Spencer's New Pet
  • The Scarecrow
  • Just Like Beverly: A Biography of Beverly Cleary
  • The Other Side
  • Nerdy Birdy
  • 7 Ate 9: The Untold Story
  • School's First Day of School
  • The Girl Who Thought in Pictures: The Story of Dr. Temple Grandin
  • The Rooster Who Would Not Be Quiet!
  • Lexie the Word Wrangler
  • Miss Alaineus: A Vocabulary Disaster
  • Truman
  • I Walk with Vanessa: A Story about a Simple Act of Kindness
See similar books…
Kate Banks has written many books for children, among them Max’s Words, And If the Moon Could Talk, winner of the Boston Globe–Horn Book Award, and The Night Worker, winner of the Charlotte Zolotow Award. She grew up in Maine, where she and her two sisters and brother spent a lot of time outdoors, and where Banks developed an early love of reading. “I especially liked picture books,” she says, “ ...more
No trivia or quizzes yet. Add some now »