Hardcover, 72 pages
Published August 12th 1961
by Random House Books for Young Readers
Summary from back of book
Ten years ago, Dr. Seuss took 220 words, rhymed them, and turned out THE CAT IN THE HAT, a little volume of absurdity that worked like a karate chop on the weary little world of Dick, Jane and Spot.” Ellen Goodman, THE DETROIT FREE PRESS, Nov. 1966
From this magically right beginning came the concept of Beginner Books, exacting blends of words and pictures that encourage children to read – all by themselves. Hailed by elementary educators and remedial reading specialists, these enormously popular books are now used in schools and libraries throughout the English-speaking world.
Mary’s review: This is a wonderfully written story about a young boy who buys a small gold fish from Mr. Carp who warns him about feeding Otto the fish too much. “Just this much”, he says, “and no more” as he holds his fingers in a small pinch. “Never more than a spot, or something may happen. You never know what“.
The little boy doesn’t listen and feeds Otto his fish more than he should and quickly learns the consequences of not listening. He calls on many people to help him out of the predicament he has gotten himself into.
It reminds me of how we get ourselves into situations by not paying attention and then having to take accountability for our own actions. It is a simple concept in learning to listen, obey and choose – that choices we make do result in consequences but that we don’t have to be afraid to ask for help when we need it.
After I read this to my 3 and 5 year old granddaughters, they each read it back to me in their own way as I had read to them separately. They basically came up with the same concept, but at different age levels.
They loved the illustrations and the colors. The 5 year old even colored in the black and white portions of the illustrations to suit her.
This is a great little book and I recommend it for children ages 3-9, although I feel it wouldn’t hurt for anyone to read it at least once.
Other Books by Helen Palmer Geisel
Bobby and His Airplane (The Little Golden Library)
Tommy’s Wonderful Rides (The Little Golden Library #63)
Walt Disney’s Uncle Remus Stories (A Giant Golden Book)
Why I Built the Boogie House (Beginner Books)
Add A Fish Out of Water to your Goodreads shelf or visit the publisher’s website.