Book of the Week: The Incredible Book-Eating Boy

August 10, 2010

In one of our recent book discussions, several of you sent kind emails and encouraged me to pick up one of Oliver Jeffers’ books. So I did. I ordered The Incredible Book-Eating Boy and am happy to report it is one of the very favorite selections during bedtime stories.

The story is so clever. Henry discovers he likes to eat books. He devours them whole and all the information in the books is absorbed by his brain. But he starts to eat books so fast and so often that his body can’t absorb all that info and things start to go haywire.

Even if I didn’t like the story (which I do!), I would want this book for the illustrations. They are wonderful. Lots of details and texture and mixed media. Very cool. Makes me want to collect all of Mr. Jeffers’ books.

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{ 30 comments… read them below or add one }

1 The real L.A. love story. August 10, 2010 at 1:46 pm

the bite out of the back cover seals the deal.


2 Design Mom August 10, 2010 at 1:59 pm

Isn’t that the perfect touch? It’s practically irresistible.


3 Wendy August 10, 2010 at 1:47 pm

I’ve never heard of this book. I will be purchasing said book forthwith. Thank you!


4 Design Mom August 10, 2010 at 1:59 pm

I hope your kids will love it as much as mine, Wendy.


5 Jenny August 10, 2010 at 1:48 pm

That’s awesome… would be great for my little bookworm.


6 Design Mom August 10, 2010 at 1:59 pm

Yes! I’m sure Book lovers will especially enjoy this.


7 Vintage Kids' Books My Kid Loves August 10, 2010 at 2:00 pm

So cute… Thanks for sharing. I obviously need to get to the library more!


8 Debbie August 10, 2010 at 2:09 pm

We have this book also! Even though my guy is a little young for it I had to buy it for him since his name is Henry just like that book eating boy and he loves books too! It is essential for any child who loves books..


9 the milliner August 10, 2010 at 2:10 pm

We have the pop-up version of this book and I absolutely LOVE it. Our little bookworm is only 2, so I’m keeping it tucked away until he can enjoy it without ripping all the tabs out. But we also have the board book version of Lost and Found. The illustrations and stories of all of Jeffers’ books are so, so charming.


10 Jen August 10, 2010 at 2:16 pm

Oliver Jeffers’ most recent book, titled “The Heart and the Bottle” was released in March of 2010.

This is an interesting video from him that shows the making of the book, plus you get to hear his accent AND see his studio!


11 Disco Mom August 10, 2010 at 3:26 pm

We got this book from the library and I thought it was funny and pretty and I do love that bite out of the back. But my kids (age 3, 5) got a bit freaked out and I got tired of answering their questions and trying to calm their confusion…so we’ll wait a few more years until they can just appreciate it for what it is – a fun book.


12 damaris August 10, 2010 at 4:19 pm

as a foodie mama I’m definitely gonna have to look at this book. it looks super fun.


13 Torrie @ a place to share... August 10, 2010 at 4:22 pm

My Amazon wish list suuuuuuure is getting big!!

Seriously- This books looks very, very cute and I have never heard of this author before, so I’m so happy for the ‘introduction!’


14 Jim A August 10, 2010 at 4:24 pm

Love Jeffers. Somehow his art is naive and sophisticated at the same time. Really appealing.


15 Sara August 10, 2010 at 4:53 pm

He has another about catching a falling star. It’s pretty adorable too. My class loves it. Also, if you’re looking for books for your kids- go with Mo Willem’s “Elephant & Piggie” series. “There’s a Bird on Your Head!” cracks my kids up EVERY TIME. I have a hard time reading it aloud and not bursting out laughing too! :)


16 amy August 10, 2010 at 5:31 pm

i came across a couple of oliver jeffers books on a recent trip to ireland and had to bring them home with me – the illustrations are so irresistible, and the prose sweet and thoughtful. needless to say, we now have most of his collection!


17 heather August 10, 2010 at 6:00 pm

We LOVE this book!!! Jack takes it for his favorite book EVERY TIME!!! But, we also really love Mr. Jeffers “How to Catch a Star”…different feel for sure, but such a wonderful book!!!! LOVE!!!!


18 Sara August 10, 2010 at 6:52 pm

I love, love, love Jeffers’ books! We have one of his illustrations framed on my daughter’s wall (from “How to Catch a Star”). We haven’t read this one, so now I will have to get it next time we order books. Thanks for sharing.


19 Melissa August 10, 2010 at 7:34 pm

We discovered Oliver Jeffers last summer at our teeny-tiny library branch and fell in love. His sweet stories and great illustrations make them instant favorites!


20 nicole i August 10, 2010 at 9:08 pm

this is the best boook…EVER. I read this book at the kids school every year at “read across america” time of the year and it is big hit with all ages…teachers included. i secretly love bringing books that the teachers don’t know but are great books. prideful i know!
have you read any of amy krouse rosenthal’s books? you would like them. i am fond of “spoon” in particular. check it out.


21 bdaiss August 10, 2010 at 9:16 pm

We found this one at the library. Loved it, but we forgot all about it. Might have to add it to my wish list for someone’s birthday.


22 lakshmi August 10, 2010 at 9:53 pm

lovely book …My son would love it… he loves books..I have a feeling he might try to copy the boy and eat books ! hmmm…
I am in love with the illustrations…:) so so quirky !
Thanks for sharing! You always find such cool stuff :)


23 Heidi August 11, 2010 at 12:55 am

I don’t even have kids but I had read Lost and Found to a little boy I know and fell in love with it. I frequently give it, or How to Catch a Star, both of which are always a hit!


24 Keia August 11, 2010 at 9:04 am

Too Cute! I love the bite out the back of the cover!


25 Angel August 11, 2010 at 10:48 am

I have this book – and I love it! The story is great, and the bite taken out of the cover is just icing on the cake. Excellent book choice!


26 Lisa Konchal August 11, 2010 at 10:15 pm

One book that I definately recomend is Jack Kent’s Socks for Supper. It was one of my favorites and is now the family favorite. Reading is one of the best ways to spend time with children.


27 Loopeeeee August 12, 2010 at 7:41 am

My son just received this book as a gift for his birthday. we read it all the time. I love the bite out of the back.


28 brenna August 12, 2010 at 11:40 pm

BIG fan of your “book of the week” series…. a great go-to for birthday gifts in my case. Love it! :)


29 jackie August 25, 2010 at 8:34 pm

This is an all time fave in our house too, for all the reasons you mention. Have you seen the pop up version though? It’s one of the most clever pop ups I’ve seen!


30 Rilla September 2, 2010 at 3:51 pm

I LOVE your Book of the Week picks and book suggestions. I ordered this for my son and got it today. Perfect for a back-to-school night present. I already read it, and am in love with the pictures and the story.


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