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Grandpa Toad's Secrets Hardcover – April 19, 1995


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Product Details

  • Age Range: 3 and up
  • Hardcover: 32 pages
  • Publisher: Putnam Juvenile (April 19, 1995)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399226109
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399226106
  • Product Dimensions: 0.5 x 9 x 11.5 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 8.8 ounces
  • Average Customer Review: 4.6 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (5 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #573,139 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

Kasza's (The Pig's Picnic; The Wolf's Chicken Stew) characteristic cleverness and droll art enliven her fetching tale of a young toad who proves an especially adept pupil. Out for "a walk in the forest," Grandpa Toad shares with Little Toad his secrets for survival. When a snake threatens to devour the elder toad, he puffs himself up in order to appear too large to swallow. Next an oversize snapping turtle pegs Grandpa as a tasty snack, but the savvy senior replies, "Wouldn't you rather have a feast?" and sends his would-be devourer scurrying after the snake. But when an enormous monster appears-so large that readers must turn the book sideways to see him in his full-spread ferocity-it is Little Toad who, quickly applying his grandfather's advice about bravery and intelligence, saves his relative from being gobbled up as a "toad sandwich." Though the underlying message here is less profound than in some of Kasza's previous books, the story serves as a witty case study in resourcefulness. Ages 4-8.
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

From School Library Journal

PreSchool-Grade 1?Cleverly plotted and expressively written, this book is bound to become a story-hour favorite. While on a walk in the forest, Grandpa Toad warns Little Toad: "Our world is full of hungry enemies," and proceeds to tell his grandson some survival skills. The first rule?to be brave?helps them escape from a snake. The second?to be smart?keeps them safe from a snapping turtle. But Grandpa hasn't yet divulged the third secret when the most threatening danger appears, an enormous monster who lifts up Grandpa and places him between two slices of bread. In a humorous and satisfying conclusion, Little Toad tricks the monster and saves his grandfather. Repetitive phrases, perfect for inviting participation, add to the appeal. Kasza's animal characters are great, both comical and realistic in a way that allows youngsters just enough emotional distance from the "scary parts." As usual, her watercolors are set on lots of white space, another plus for group sharing. And the monster himself is so big that he's sideways on the page, an interesting design element. Another winner from an author/illustrator who really knows what children like.?Lauralyn Persson, Wilmette Public Library, IL
Copyright 1995 Reed Business Information, Inc.

More About the Author

Keiko Kasza was born on a small Japanese island in the Inland Sea of Japan. She grew up in a typical Japanese extended family with her parents, two brothers, and grandparents. Uncles, aunts, and cousins also lived nearby. "All the steps I took growing up were very normal," Ms. Kasza says. "The only unusual thing I did was go to college in the United States." She graduated with a degree in graphic design from California State University at Northridge. Ms. Kasza married an American, and the United States has been her home ever since.After publishing five children's books in Japan and working as a graphic designer for fourteen years, Ms. Kasza decided in 1988 to devote her time to picture books. She says, "Having two small boys and two professions was too much to handle."Ms. Kasza admires many great picture-book creators, such as Leo Lionni and Maurice Sendak, but says that the work of Arnold Lobel has influenced her the most. The subtle humor and warmth he created in his books continues to inspire me," she says. "I often go back to his work when I get discouraged or lose confidence."Ms. Kasza compares the process of making a book to acting on stage under the lights:"I become the character that I'm working on at that moment. I pretend that I'm a bird looking for a mother, or a pig trying to impress his girlfriend. When I'm acting, I'm a child myself."Ms. Kasza's ambition is not to create a hundred books, but to "create one really good book that will be kept on the family bookshelves for generations, although a hundred really good books would be even better, of course!"Keiko Kasza lives in Indiana with her husband and two sons.

Customer Reviews

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Most Helpful Customer Reviews

1 of 1 people found the following review helpful By Julie on June 24, 2001
Format: Paperback
Keiko Kasza writes wonderful books for children. I have all of them and my children love the books. They are among our favorites. These books would be great gifts to give grandchildren, friends or as a keepsake for a baby gift. Buy them and enjoy !
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By Cathron on February 2, 2010
Format: Paperback
When I was a library media specialist in an elementary school, my students loved hearing Keiko Kasza's books. Now that I teach children learning a second language, I continue to use her books in my teaching. I can always count on her books to keep kids listening with rapt attention. Also, Keiko's artwork is very easily understood by the youngest viewers and the storylines are engaging to a wide range of listeners. Grandpa Toad's real secret is to be a friend to others when they need you. Kids understand that.
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By Sarah Benjamin on November 1, 2006
Format: Paperback
This is one of my all time favorite books to read aloud to a class of young children. The story is clever, exciting and laugh out loud funny. Four and five-year-olds love the part where the young toad outwits the monster to save Grandpa.
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By AC on December 7, 2014
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
A favorite!
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1 of 3 people found the following review helpful By Ulyyf on September 14, 2008
Format: Paperback
It's just not very interesting. Grandpa toad is teaching his grandson how to be safe in a world of predators - be brave and be smart. But before he can give the third tip, he gets attacked by a monster! Luckily, his grandtoad is there to be brave and smart for him and save the day, incidentally demonstrating the third tip: Have a good friend to depend on. Aw.

There's nothing wrong with this book, it's just not that interesting.
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