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George and Martha

(George and Martha)

4.17  ·  Rating details ·  5,253 ratings  ·  176 reviews
Two lovable hippos teach the meaning of friendship in five separate vignettes: "Split Pea Soup," "The Flying Machine," "The Tub," "The Mirror," "The Tooth." ...more
Paperback, 48 pages
Published September 11th 1974 by HMH Books for Young Readers (first published 1972)
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Average rating 4.17  · 
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 ·  5,253 ratings  ·  176 reviews

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Jul 30, 2018 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
James Marshall pens five short pieces about two hippos who are the best of friends: George and Martha.

- Split Pea Soup: George attends lunch with Martha every day and on each occasion split pea soup is on the menu. George soon tires of this and thinks he is being sly by hiding the soup away. However, Martha sees him and has a lesson that George will not soon forget.

- The Flying Machine: George has a chance to ride in a hot air balloon, but things do not seem to 'get off the ground'. He makes an
Oct 16, 2016 rated it really liked it
Is there something in the George and Martha series that reminds me of a comic strip. Each of the three or four pages of the story seems like a box in a comic strip.
Who doesn't love George and Martha?! I loved this book as a child and have read this many times to my own. ...more
Danni Green
cw: calling out sexism and sexually predatory behavior in a children's book
I liked this book as a kid, but one of the stories -- "The Mirror" -- always really bothered me. This is a story in which Martha, a hippopotamus, loves to look at herself in the mirror; George (also a hippopotamus) plays a trick on her to get her to stop doing that, and the moral of the story is supposed to be that she deserved it because she shouldn't have been so vain. I'm currently involved in a group reading of
Dec 20, 2017 rated it liked it
The book is five extremely short stories about two good friends - George and Martha. It’s a decent book, but I wouldn’t go out of my way to buy it for someone
Luisa Knight
Dear and silly, these two hippos are quite the comical duo. But you can learn some valuable lessons from them too. Like not putting split pea soup in your shoe and telling friends the truth. Two of my favorite characters!

Each book usually contains five short stories. Short. Very short. But oh so fun!

Ages: 3 - 8

Cleanliness: one odd story has George peeking into the window when Martha is taking a bath.

**Like my reviews? I also have hundreds of detailed reports that I offer too. These reports give
Shannon Brasher
Sep 24, 2015 rated it it was amazing
George and Martha is an old favorite for me and is a new favorite for my three year old daughter as well. George and Martha are two great friends who have some quirky stories and adventures. Children will love reading these silly stories and also understand the power of friendship. I would read this to my students or just have the books available in the classroom library for personal reading. I could see this book turning into a fun writing prompt to have the students write their own George and ...more
Apr 17, 2011 rated it really liked it
The other day I was intensely aware of the corruption in the world, and so searching for something pure and true, I dug through my favorite childhood books and was delighted to find James Marshall's George and Martha. I'd somehow forgotten about these two lovable buffoons. I have to admit that I sat and read this three times in a row, with a hugs smile on my face.
Thank you Mr. Marshall for reminding me of the beauty of simplicity.
Rachel Smalter Hall
George and Martha inspired me to write my own book about hippos when I was in third grade. It involved the underground railroad (which I thought was literally a railroad reached by trapdoor) and a claw-foot bathtub.
Oct 27, 2015 rated it really liked it
Shelves: children-s
George and Martha are "friends" that learn a lot from each other. That cheeky George learns not to be a peeping Tom from Martha, too. What are friends for, right? ...more
Nov 14, 2010 rated it did not like it
Shelves: picture-books
Childhood favorite not good enough for my child.
Jun 21, 2020 rated it liked it
I had a different picture book from this George and Martha series as a kid, so I decided to look up the author and check out one of his others books from the library. I really love the very 60's color pallet of these books. Beyond that it definitely just hits the nostalgia button for me. ...more
This was so cute. I love how it ended how it started with the little moral that "friends tell the truth." A great example of applying what one has learned and seeing on the bright side. ...more
Feb 19, 2016 added it
Shelves: picture-books
Target audience: 3-7

George and Martha is a picture book containing five vignettes about a friendly pair of hippos. Each vignette is very short and stands alone. The five stories are Split Pea Soup, The Flying Machine, The Tub, The Mirror, and The Tooth.

-Simple, unbusy illustrations
-Very short vignettes that still convey a story and message.
-The 1970s minimalist color scheme looks very dull and boring today
-Outdated vocabulary that might be hard for a modern child to unders
I watched an awful lot of George and Martha on tv when my kids were little, never once suspecting there was a book in the background. But good things come to those who wait and this book showed up at a perfect time. It's a set of four funny stories about friendship and honesty with just two characters.

Then it gets interesting. But probably only if you are a teacher of young children. Here's how I used this book with great effect in my Year 1/2 classroom . . .

Firstly I'm really keen on stories w
Sep 26, 2015 rated it really liked it
This review has been hidden because it contains spoilers. To view it, click here.
Al James
Sep 13, 2011 rated it really liked it
The power of friendship is always something that everyone should learn about and cherish. A good way for a person to learn about this is through this book. I like how the book doesn’t teach friendship by some serious and overly dramatic way, but as a humorous and often times goofy. This tone of happiness also shows in its illustration. The colors which seem to be crayoned have an upbeat feel as well as the characters portraits of gigantic hippos with equally gigantic teeth. I highly recommend te ...more
Oct 05, 2011 rated it liked it
I really liked reading George and Martha, and thought it was a wonderful inspiring book, that little kids would enjoy. It would be a great book to read to a class because it would help teach kids about the bonding of friendships and especially learning the golden rule "Treat others the way you want to be treated." I think a great activity to do with this book would be having the kids think of ways that you good be a good friend to someone and write a story about an adventure you took with this f ...more
Apr 25, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: picture-book
This is a great friendship book. Sometimes, friends need space. It's okay for friends to want space and it's okay for friends to want to do other things. Sometimes young kids forget these things and they panic the first time someone says they don't want to hang out with them for the day. This would be a good book for the students to read who are going through friend troubles or friends who are in a fight! ...more
Dec 20, 2011 rated it it was amazing
I love this series. I told the librarian the other day that George and Martha should be marriage counselors. One of my favorite lines is, "And Martha didn't say a word." This after she jumped off the dreaded high dive to save George's self-respect. I love George's gold tooth (the original was lost in a roller skating accident) and the flower Martha wears behind her ear. My kind of humor, and even my kids get it. ...more
Heidi Hart
Apr 07, 2014 rated it it was amazing
Rediscovering Old Favorites with My Kids James Marshall's George and Martha stories were some of my favorite read-aloud books when I was a kid (back when dinosaurs roamed the earth). I thought the idea of pouring split pea soup into one's loafers was hilarious, and I loved the way Martha got revenge on George for violating her privacy in the bathtub. Now, I am delighted to find that these stories are truly timeless, and my little boys (1 and 3) love them as much as I did. ...more
Samantha Penrose
Apr 06, 2009 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kids-books
Always be honest with your friends.
Sometimes friends can be selfish, or have their own best intrests in mind.
Friends need privacy.
Dont be annoys your friends.
Always be kind to your friends.

I remember just loving this as a particular reason...
Feb 26, 2014 rated it really liked it
Laugh out loud funny-I can't believe I haven't read these...or maybe I was just too little to remember them. ...more
Anna H
Jan 30, 2015 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
I LOVE, LOVE, LOVE this!!!
(Even though I *do* like split pea soup...:D)
This is the first book of the George and Martha and series. A simple picture book of short stories. A little too moralistic for me. But good enough art and text. Not bad.
Twila Newey
Oct 17, 2015 rated it it was amazing
George and Martha: The Complete Stories of Two Best Friends: Buy this, read this, even if you have no kids. The stories are hilarious and sweet.
Mar 29, 2016 rated it it was ok
Shelves: picture-books
I like imagining myself and my husband in 20 years as George and Martha. Though they're sweet, this book is outdated and probably wouldn't be engaging for today's kids. ...more
George likes to look in windows. What else is there to say?

The first story was engaging, tho very short. The others were too short.

And again, George likes to look in windows!
I don't think the book has aged well. The best stories were inane. The worst stories were mysoginistic and a little creepy. ...more
Mar 04, 2019 rated it liked it
Hippopotamuses George and Martha are friends.

This book contains five stories:
* "Split Pea Soup"
* "The Flying Machine"
* "The Tub"
* "The Mirror"
* "The Tooth"

Each tale recounts an episode in George's and Martha's friendship. Some are silly adventures, and some espouse a definite moral.

In "Split Pea Soup," George is reluctant to tell Martha how much he detests split pea soup because he knows how much she enjoys cooking it. The tension is between eating something to be polite and politely decli
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James Edward Marshall (October 10, 1942 – October 13, 1992), who also wrote as Edward Marshall, was a children's author and illustrator.

His father worked on the railroad, was a band member in the 1930s, and his mother sang in the local church choir. His family later moved to Beaumont, Texas. Marshall said: "Beaumont is deep south and swampy and I hated it. I knew I would die if I stayed there so I

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“That's silly,' said Martha. 'Friends should always tell each other the truth.” 7 likes
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