Goodreads helps you keep track of books you want to read.
Start by marking “The Incredible Book Eating Boy” as Want to Read:
The Incredible Book Eating Boy
Enlarge cover
Rate this book
Clear rating
Open Preview

The Incredible Book Eating Boy

4.30  ·  Rating details ·  6,766 ratings  ·  751 reviews
Like many children, Henry loves books. But Henry doesn't like to read books, he likes to eat them. Big books, picture books, reference books . . . if it has pages, Henry chews them up and swallows (but red ones are his favorite). And the more he eats, the smarter he gets--he's on his way to being the smartest boy in the world! But one day he feels sick to his stomach. And ...more
Hardcover, 32 pages
Published May 1st 2007 by Philomel Books (first published April 19th 2006)
More Details... Edit Details

Friend Reviews

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

Reader Q&A

To ask other readers questions about The Incredible Book Eating Boy, please sign up.
Popular Answered Questions
Hope Yep you can Are you because this book is cool

Community Reviews

Showing 1-30
Average rating 4.30  · 
Rating details
 ·  6,766 ratings  ·  751 reviews

More filters
Sort order
Start your review of The Incredible Book Eating Boy
Mar 15, 2009 rated it really liked it
in the future this book will make sense to no one. it will have to be re-named the incredible kindle-eating boy. i wrote this review only to prove that even when i take a break from paper-writing to read a childrens book, i am still on-topic mentally. so give me an a please...
Dec 05, 2017 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Of course I’ve heard of this author, so I grabbed it straight away from work. Brand new!

A funny little boy gets greedy. Greedy for books. To eat! This is all well and good, he could even become the smartest boy in the world! But this glutenous book eating, which started with a sentence - page - chapter - then gulp - A WHOLE BOOK! - made him quick green with sickness.

Then it turns out it may be slower, but he could still be the smartest boy in the world. Now he loves to read, isn’t sick, and is
Jun 16, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I loved this book, I loved the funny storyline and I really LOVED the illustrations! I think Oliver Jeffers is fast becoming one of my favourite writers for children storybooks.

This story is about Henry who really, really, really enjoys ALL sorts of books...But...he enjoys the books a little different from you and I. In fact he EATS any sort of book he can find, especially the red ones! This allows his brain to do the most interesting thing, it internalises all the info out of each book until...
Aug 24, 2017 rated it really liked it
I believe the last picture book I reviewed was A Child of Books by Oliver Jeffers and here I am with his earlier gem. I love the illustrations and the use of book pages in the backgrounds. I love the bite taken out of the back cover and the disclaimer advising against eating the book. I love that the boy becomes the incredible broccoli eating boy in the end. But mostly I just love a book for children that celebrates reading. This book does that in a clever, catchy way. 4.5 stars ...more
Lisa Vegan
Jan 17, 2008 rated it it was amazing
Recommends it for: kids with a sense of humor; kids who love books and kids who don’t love books
Oh, I just loved this, and its outlandish humor will, I think, appeal to most kids. I can see reading it with kids in all sorts of settings, and independent readers should enjoy perhaps it even more.

The humor is wonderful, all the way through, including the “eaten out” page corners of the last few pages and the back book cover. I also love it when children’s book authors use a childhood photo of themselves in the author bio section, and that’s the case for this book.

The illustrations were wonder
Jun 09, 2020 rated it really liked it
Henry eats a book, and absorbs the knowledge contained within the pages.


But, too much of even a good thing can sometimes lead to trouble, as Henry discovers. This is a fun story with imaginative artwork by the author. Fun fact: Seeing the little bite taken out of the back of the book led one of my coworkers to confess that as a child, she used to chew on her headboard at night.

Hmm . . . I'm assuming she was impervious to splinters.
Nov 06, 2019 rated it really liked it
Recommends it for: Fans of Oliver Jeffers / Readers Looking for Picture-Books About Books & Reading
Henry loved books. Specifically, he loved to eat them. The more he ate the tasty tomes, the smarter he got. Until the day, that is, that the knowledge he was ingesting began to become a little mixed, and he began to feel a little ill as a result of his unusual diet. Following the advice of parents, doctors and librarians, he stopped scarfing down books, but subsequently found life a bit dull and flat. What could he do...?

READ!!! (of course!) Although I saw the ending of The Incredible Book Eatin
Dec 14, 2010 rated it it was amazing
The three-year-old ADORED this book, then went and took a bite out of another library book. Sigh.
Henry, everything must be done in moderation!

What a cute book! It was an accident really, the way this all started. Henry wasn't paying attention when he took his first bite, it was one single word out of a book. Henry enjoyed it so much that he continued eating words until eventually, he was eating whole books! Henry got so good at eating books that instead of taking the books apart, Henry was swallowing the books whole! This part made me smile as I thought Henry must be related to the, "I know
Hannah Higson
Jan 22, 2018 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picturebooks, ks2, humour, ks1
This is a really good book to engage children with a love for reading.
It is about a boy who loves to eat books. Everytime he eats a book he gets smarter and smarter. However, not after long this boy starts getting all the information in his head confused. Henry learns that you can get information from reading books and also love the process.
Aug 24, 2016 rated it it was amazing
I confess, I have an artistic crush on Oliver Jeffers! I'm falling in love with his work. Who does Oliver Jeffers write and illustrate for? My almost-4-year-old loves him, but so do I. At this point, I'm not sure which one of us I keep ordering his books for. I want to keep them in my office/library, but I've been reluctantly keeping them in my son's room so they're handy for bedtime.

This book is enchanting, humorous, and gorgeously illustrated. There is even a "bite" taken out of the last page
Jan 24, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
OMG Loved This Book!

I read a review by a friend and said I got to read that. Got a library copy and read it to myself. Read it to my four-year old grandson, who though he can't read yet, loved it. My eight-year old grandson laughed out loud at it.

A story about a boy who eats books. (Both boys loved the part where the boy 'throws up' in a real toilet cuz he gets sick eating books.) It's just so zany - there's a word I seldom used - and 'cuckoo for cocoa puffs' silly that I'm going to buy a copy
Jan 19, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
¡Genial! :D
Mar 02, 2016 rated it it was amazing
What a funny story! I could see it being a great book to frame early independent reading conversations at the beginning of the school year.
J & J
Jun 24, 2019 rated it it was ok
I like the drawings and the layout of this book but the story lacks depth and ends oddly.
Erin Murray
I thoroughly loved how in Henry's lowest overall point of the book where he stops eating them, he discovers a love for reading! The unconventional idea of a 'book eating boy' could definitely appeal to children as it's such an absurd idea to them. I've read it to my cousins before and they absolutely love it! The illustrations throughout are FANTASTIC and anyone can admire them. The added touch on the back of the corner chewed off is just a little extra but children LOVE noticing it! ...more
شغاف القلب
Oct 04, 2017 rated it it was amazing
So beautiful. The lovely bite at the end. The drawings and the laughter. Really recommended.
Fiona Hill
Nov 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: ks2, ks1, picturebooks
I absolutely loved the rustic, unique and almost tea-stained illustrations. What a great book to inspire children to read for pleasure. It also encourages children to take their time, enjoy the book, and to really appreciate all the words and illustrations when they read. I loved the hidden surprise at the end, and I’m sure children would too!
Read this book in Dutch, but will be writing my review in English.

Of course I had to read this book when I spotted it at the library. For more than 1 reason. First up it is Oliver Jeffers, and I just adore his books. Second I am a bookworm, and so I love stories about fellow bookworms, especially if they are a special kind of bookworm.

Because that is what our boy in this story is, a special kind of bookworm. You know how people often tell people who read a lot that they eat books, well this kid
Rasha Zayed
May 18, 2020 rated it it was amazing
Lovely story
Ibran Khan
May 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
A very strange story to this book but kids like strange! I read this to a class of year 2's and they were engaged from the very start.
It's about a boy who one day decides to eat a book to become smarter. He starts of eating a word, a sentence and then a whole book. This part allowed me to ask questions on the elements/features of a sentence (Capital letters, full stop etc) to illicit the childrens knowledge.
The book itself has a moral, a very obvious one that is to NOT eat books to get smarter.
Jan 31, 2009 rated it really liked it
We had read this one before, but I just had to check it out and read it again with all that is going on with books these days. Here's a book that really should be banned (tongue-in-cheek). I can't believe anyone could condone eating books with all of the lead in books out there! ha!

This is a pretty funny book about a boy who likes to eat books. As he eats he gains knowledge but pretty soon he's eating too many and getting his facts mixed up. Finally, he picks one up to read instead of eat and fi
Amy Reid
Feb 13, 2014 rated it it was amazing
'The story is about a boy who decides to eat books in order to become smarter. He starts eating a word, a sentence then a whole book. This creates opportunities to discuss elements and features of sentences to encourage children's thinking. The story carries a moral that patience is a virtue and that perserverance is key to success.

It would be most suited for KS1-lower KS2 which could be used during circle time to prompt a discussion about the importance of not rushing and that the easy route i
Randie D. Camp, M.S.
Mar 02, 2013 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: picture-books
Henry loves books. Correction: Henry loves eating books. And doing so makes him smarter. He starts eating books at a scary rate and soon he feels ill and all of the information gets jumbled. He follows the advice of others and stops eating books but he feels sad...until he picks up a book and reads it.

I love Henry's story, the bookish illustrations and most of all the ending. Recommended for all bookworms and bookworms in training.
Jun 30, 2017 rated it liked it
Shelves: sounds, funny, silly-words
Fun to read out loud, and the kids love the silly concept, as well as the (view spoiler) at the end. Not a book I'm crazy about, personally, but it works for even older elementary school students, so it's good to have on hand. ...more
I bought this for my 4 year old cousin who loves reading. I think he'll love it as much as I do. Consider me a fan of Oliver Jeffers' illustrations! ...more
Bayan Ashoor
Jun 26, 2018 rated it really liked it
This book encourages children to read in a cleaver and lovely way. I enjoyed it.
Bianey OYOS
Apr 12, 2019 rated it it was amazing
The Incredible Book Eating Boy is a fun and silly story about young boy name Henry who loved books. He literary loves books that he gulps one right after the other. His hunger for all types of books grows as he realizes that with each book he is getting smarter and smarter until one day the incredible happens and Henry is left without any other option but to change his book eating habits.

This is book is an easy read that will keep all readers engaged from beginning to end. One of the most fasci
Ben Cooke
Oct 06, 2017 rated it really liked it
The passion Henry has for eating books will be very comical for children, who will enjoy reading something completely bonkers. This picture book uses Henry's story to promote reading for pleasure, stating that he could still become the smartest person on Earth. I also really enjoyed the design features of the book, for example using the print of old texts as the background to the story, and demonstrating Henry's hunger with a bite mark shaped tear at the end of the book. I could easily see this ...more
Sadia Mansoor
Jul 28, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: children, favorites
A.M.A.Z.I.N.G Book!!!! I just loved it.. It's for all you readers out there! Only a reader can understand the condition of this boy ^_^

You guys have to read this..
« previous 1 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 next »

Readers also enjoyed

  • Wolves
  • Voices in the Park
  • Do Not Open This Book
  • The Day the Crayons Quit
  • The Day the Crayons Came Home
  • Imaginary Fred
  • The Storm Whale
  • Who's Afraid of the Big Bad Book?
  • Grandad's Island
  • Whatever Next!
  • Gorilla
  • The Bear and the Piano
  • Little Bird
  • The Red Tree
  • Frog on a Log?
  • Magic Box
  • A Mouse Called Julian
  • This Is Not My Hat
See similar books…
Oliver Jeffers' work takes many forms. His distinctive paintings have been exhibited in galleries worldwide, and HarperCollins UK and Penguin USA publish his award-winning picture books, now translated into over 30 languages.

In 2007, Jeffers was the official illustrator for World Book Day, and in 2008 Lost and Found became Oliver's first book to made into animation by London-based Studio AKA.


Related Articles

If you follow the world of food, chances are you’ve heard of David Chang. The founder of the Momofuku restaurant group, Chang is a chef, TV...
52 likes · 8 comments