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Awful Ogre's Awful Day

(Awful Ogre)

3.65  ·  Rating details ·  233 ratings  ·  64 reviews
I'm an awful, awful ogre,

Absolutely awful ogre.

I'm so awful, Awful Ogre

Is my awful ogre name ...

Awful Ogre is huge, hungry, horrible –– and totally lovable. Larger than life, Awful Ogre packs into one day enough excitement, imagination, emotion, and sheer ebullience to last most of us a lifetime. In his awful, irresistible way, he steals the heart of every reader.

Ages 6+
Paperback, 40 pages
Published July 26th 2005 by Greenwillow Books (first published 2001)
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Average rating 3.65  · 
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 ·  233 ratings  ·  64 reviews

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Steve Holden
Jul 28, 2017 rated it really liked it
My other favorite childhood poet, Jack Prelutsky! He has a lot of fun, often themed, poetry books. This wasn't one of my childhood, but I grabbed this as it came out and have had copies in my room my entire career. It's funny, silly, and sometimes gross. Young children enjoy the gross out moments and laugh at some of the poems. This is usually a popular one off of the shelves at various times!
Kirsten Whisler
It was absolutely entertaining. The illustrations were wonderful and eye catching and each poem was hilariously interesting.
NS - Cami Houston
Nov 19, 2009 rated it it was amazing  ·  review of another edition
Shelves: poetry
Appropriate 3-5, My rattlesnake awakens me, I swat its scaly head. My buzzard pecks my belly Till I fling it from my bed. My rats attack me as I rise But scatter when I roar. boot my sweet tarantula Across the stony floor.

I tickle my piranha, Who rewards me with a bite, Then disengage the leeches That besiege me overnight. I flick aside the lizard Clinging grimly to my chin, And now I feel I'm ready For my morning to begin.

Thus starts the first quirky poem of many about the charming ogre's
Sep 29, 2008 rated it it was amazing
I thought this book was great. It consists of different poems about an ogre's summer. My favorite is "Ogre Attends a Concert." The poems use a lot of colorful words that student's probably wouldn't see often. It is also a very funny book because it shows ogres in a comical way. The pictures are great and very detailed.

I would definitely use this book in my classroom. After reading the book to the class, I would have the students write their own ogre poem. We would discuss that all of the poems
Dec 11, 2016 rated it really liked it  ·  review of another edition
Ogre's day is just packed with awful things. It begins with a rattlesnake awakening, and ends with a cactus-cuddle. In between, our Ogre dines on Scream of Wheat, sips some gargoyle bile, enjoys a glorious thunderstorm, plays music and dances a bit, sends a love letter, and watches the telly . . . all in inimitable Ogre style. A perfect read for the "stranger" children (and adults) in your life.
Nov 10, 2018 rated it it was amazing
I had a great time reading Awful Ogre's Awful Day to my two youngest. There were a ton of fun words you usually don't see in a kid's book that really gave the book an interesting sound and cadence to read out loud. The girls stopped me on almost every page to point out something hidden in the illustrations that made them giggle and gasp. We will definitely be reading this one again.
Chelsea McMillon
Nov 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Shelves: favorites
This is a fun book of rhymes that any child, especially those that enjoy creepy crawlies or gross things, would enjoy. You can't just read a page and turn to the next. There is so much to explore in the illustrations as they fit the rhymes perfectly.
Kimberly Austin
Jun 27, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Super cute poetry book about Ogres and how they eat breakfast, groom themselves, dances, and much more. Good book for preschool through 5th grade.
Dec 26, 2019 rated it really liked it
Shelves: poetry
Our favorite Prelutsky so far--gross, witty and funny.
Allie Mueller
Sep 08, 2016 added it
Shelves: 1-10

Type of book: Picture book
Literary genre: Poetry, fantasy,
Awards the book has received: Dorothy Canfield Fisher Children's Book Award Nominee (2003)

Summary: This picture book is a compilation of poems which give the reader a glance into an awful ogre’s life. The poems include the ogre’s meals, his morning routine, some of his favorite hobbies, and even his dreams.

Critique of the book substantiated with at least one reason:
Although this book may have some very challenging vocabulary, the
This is silly. But I like silly.
Kim Valentine
Aug 22, 2008 rated it it was ok
This is a book of poems by children's Poet Laureate Jack Prelutsky. It is recommended for children preschool to 4th grade. Written about an ogre's summer. Each page is a poem about something the order does during the summer like eat weasels or paint rats. I think the words would be above what a preschool or kindergarten would understand but the pictures and the gross things the ogre does would appeal to little boys. This author has written over 30 books so if I were to find a student who enjoyed ...more
May 03, 2015 rated it really liked it
thought this book was an absolutely excellent childrens book. It is filled with adorable poems, so it would be great for a poetry lesson. The illustrations are very adorable and caught my attention while I was reading this book. The character named "Awful Ogre" tells about how he spends his day in poetic form. Every time you turn the page, you find a new section such as "Awful Ogre Takes His Supper" and "Awful Ogre's Bone Collection." I found it surprising that this book was filled with a lot ...more
Little D
Feb 10, 2017 rated it liked it
Perhaps at 4 I am just too young for this one!!
Mar 09, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: at-bjhs, with-hugh
Of course the poems- the rhyme, the rhythm, the humor - are great: it's Jack Prelutsky! My oldest is not a huge poetry lover, but he's always game for Prelutsky - The New Kid on the Block is one of my all-time favorites, and now it's one of his, too. Awful Ogre is definitely related to Shrek (the William Steig original, not the Dreamworks softie.) He's mean and rude and gross - absolutely perfect for little boys! Next up, Awful Ogre Running Wild!
May 14, 2010 rated it really liked it
Shelves: picture-books, poetry
The rhythm and ridiculousness makes this poem fun to read and engaging for children. For lack of a better word, some of the text and illustrations are a little gross, however, the absurd notions of what makes an ogre happy diminish the effect of such “grossness.” I think it is a very silly and effective way to teach children that what you might consider awful, someone else might consider wonderful.
Mary Ann
Apr 30, 2012 rated it it was amazing
Gross and yucky poetry that will have kids laughing, Awful Ogre's Awful Day gives the disgusting details of Ogre's day: eating his gargoyle bile breakfast, tending his carnivorous roses, to bidding goodnight to savage raptors and nasty maggots. Along the way, Prelutsky's book introduces some excellent vocabulary words and clever rhyme, not to mention plenty of funny drawings for kids to enjoy. Sure to make your day more Awful!
Anja Manning
I know I have issues with books revelling in ugliness (the 'original' Shrek for example). But as much as I couldn't appreciate Paul O. Zelinsky's beautiful illustrations with their ugly elements, the poems are truly wonderful.
I can imagine how kids would have a favorite poem that they can't get enough of. The 'naughtiness' and 'otherness' of the Awful Ogre's life is adorable.
NS- Sarah
Nov 20, 2009 rated it liked it
Shelves: poetry
This is a book that I envision older readers picking up. I also think boys might like it more than girls would. The ogres in this book are quite strange looking which I think boys would find amusing. The rhyme is fun to read and I liked the variety of the topics that the poems covered. I don't think this would be a book I would purchase for my classroom, though.
Dec 01, 2012 rated it really liked it
Shelves: kidslit-645
Illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky. I thought that this was just a hilarious, perfect-for-boys book. It was so gross and funny. I think it would be best for a little bit older than the picture book crowd so that they could understand more of the humor, but I'm sure all ages of boys would like it since the illustrations are so great as well.
Nov 27, 2012 rated it really liked it
Gross and funny poems fill this book by master Jack Prelutsky. Each poem, through related to each other and organized in a chronological fashion to reflect the activities of Ogre's day, stand alone in their story, hilarity and skillful construction. Great potential for use as additions to a variety of storytimes.
Sep 26, 2013 rated it really liked it
Very original poems, very funny ideas with a lot of irony. Not sure an ogre is the best role model, but that is probably just what kids are looking for. They actually have some racial (and species) diversity, although the love poem had some beauty stereotyping which I could have done without. The ideas are sometimes advanced, and by that I mean maybe age 7(?) rather than age 4.
May 06, 2015 rated it really liked it
I think that this book was a fun way to teach kids about poetry, but that is where it was limited with me. I will say that the illustrations in this book were amazing. That will be the draw in for the kids. I will say that I found the poems to be a bit more funnier and inviting than the first book by this duo.
Jun 03, 2014 rated it it was amazing

I always hear that if you write children's books, don't make them rhyme unless you are Dr. Seuss. Thankfully Jack Prelutsky ignored that advice and wrote a very entertaining rhyming book with the ogre doing lot's of gross things that me and my kids loved. The detailed pictures make it fun to go back and see what you missed the first few times you read it.
Susan Menk
Tags: ogres, exaggeration, opposites, day in the life, children, picture book, poetry, humor, non-fiction

Poems about the ogre take the reader through all the parts of Awful Ogre's awful day.


Prelutsky, Jack, illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky. "Awful Ogre's Awful Day." New York: Greenwillow Books, 2001.
Aug 30, 2011 rated it liked it
Shelves: fantasy, children, poetry
Awful Ogre has a truly awe-inspiringly awful day eating a gross breakfast, hanging out in his terrible garden, and thinking various horrible thoughts--all in rhyme. Wasn't quite as lol-funny as some of Prelutsky's other titles, but fun anyway. I bet kids love it. My favorite part was Awful Ogre's frightening nightmare of a lovely pastoral landscape.
Apr 30, 2010 rated it liked it
Shelves: children
Author: Jack Prelutsky
Illustrator: Paul Zelinsky
Publisher: HarperTrophy
Genre: Poetry Book
Summary: A collection of poems about the activities (waking up, eating, hygiene) during an Ogre’s awful day.
Response: In my opinion, the illustrations in the book were the most attractive aspect.
Theme/Concept/Connection: Poems, rhymes
Karin Adams
Apr 16, 2012 added it
Shelves: lis-645
An unusual picture book of poems, for sure! I found Awful Ogre completely disgusting and awful! The pictures really brought the poems to life, the details of disgusting things within the illustrations were truly gross!
Jan 01, 2017 rated it it was amazing
Ultimate Reading Challenge 2017. A book with pictures.

Illustrated by Paul O. Zelinsky. One day in the life of an ogre. What wonderful sing song poetry, especially for young boys! I love the poetry of Jack Prelutsky.
Cody never gets tired of this book, I can't imagine how many times I've read it to him. It's written in poem form; very clever and funny. But it's the pictures that make it so much fun, plenty of gross ogre type things to keep his boy mind riveted.
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Jack Prelutsky is an American poet. He attended New York public schools, and later the High School of Music and Art and Hunter College. Prelutsky, who has also worked as a busboy, furniture mover, folk singer, and cab driver, claims that he hated poetry in grade school because of the way it was taught. He is the author of more than 30 poetry collections including Nightmares: Poems to Trouble Your ...more

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Awful Ogre (2 books)
  • Awful Ogre Running Wild