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63 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Down goes the first one, down goes the second one, oh how they wiggle and squirm
To my mind, "How To Eat Fried Worms" is an American children's classic ranking just behind "Harriet the Spy". In school, kids are constantly being forced to read books that, while excellently written, haven't a funny or amusing sentence anywhere to be seen. This is a foolish act on the part of schools. If you want your children to become good readers, you need to...
Published on August 17, 2005 by E. R. Bird

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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad but not necessarily a personal favorite either
I remember being intrigued by the title of this book as a child. Was this book REALLY about eating fried worms? If so, YUCK!

Needless to say, after reading the book, it really IS about eating fried worms. Billy is challenged to eat fifteen worms in fifteen days, with the strict rule being that he could only eat one per day and could not skip a day. His...
Published on November 17, 2005 by J. Hamer


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63 of 69 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Down goes the first one, down goes the second one, oh how they wiggle and squirm, August 17, 2005
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
To my mind, "How To Eat Fried Worms" is an American children's classic ranking just behind "Harriet the Spy". In school, kids are constantly being forced to read books that, while excellently written, haven't a funny or amusing sentence anywhere to be seen. This is a foolish act on the part of schools. If you want your children to become good readers, you need to soften the meaningful with the flamboyant and silly. I was actually expecting, "How To Eat Fried Worms" to be some kind of mildly amusing but essentially meaningless tale. I certainly didn't expect anyone to actually EAT a worm. Instead, I found that this is a brilliantly plotted war between two factions of friends and a book that can do a lot of good in teaching kids about rising action, climax, and satisfying endings. Plus lots of worms get munched.

When four friends, Billy, Tom, Alan, and Joe meet one day to discuss why Tom failed to join the others in a trespassing incident, they learn that he was kept indoors for not eating his dinner. Billy, the group's unofficial leader, pooh-poohs Tom's finicky ways, claiming that he could eat almost anything. This kind of statement leads to a dare. Could Billy eat a worm? How about fifteen worms? How about fifteen worms in fifteen days for fifty dollars? The bet is made, hands are shaken, and the rules are clear. Billy can use any condiment he chooses and may eat the worms broiled, fried, baked, or however he prefers. As the contest continues, Alan and Joe attempt to find ways to win an increasingly desperate war against Billy. They try psychological warfare. They try out-and-out cheating. They try using Billy's parents against him. They try using Billy's greed against him and at the last minute come up with a plan that very nearly finishes their friend for good. This all inevitably leads to fights, panicked late-night worm hunts, and an ending that will have kids gripping the edge of their seats as Billy's little brother Pete comes through at the last minute.

At the heart of the tale, however, is the worm eating. It's funny, but as the years have gone by the covers for "How To Eat Fried Worms" have grown more and more explicit. At first they wouldn't even show a worm. In the 1980s the cover displayed two kids presenting two others with a steaming silver plate of ... something. Now, at last, the worm is displayed on the cover in all its magnificent ickyness. Rockwell balances out the gross with the funny with the thoughtful. Some reviewers of this book have shown confusion over such chapter headings as "Admirals Nagumo and Kusaka on the Bridge of the Akaiga, December 6, 1941" or "Guadalcanal". I don't think it takes too much intelligence, however, to determine that these titles show that the boys are in a state of war. It's mind against not-so-queasy stomach and the stomach seems to have the obvious advantage. Reading this book, kids get easily sucked into a slowly escalating battle between two desperate sides. It's like a war without much in the way of pain and blood and gore. By the way, the original pen and ink illustrations by Emily McCully (who later went on to give us the Caldecott winning title, "Mirette On the High Wire") are simple but effective, complimenting the text very nicely indeed.

I'd like to state for the record that those of you who eschew this title without having read it are doing yourself a disservice. This is a consistently amusing, intelligent, and really well-written title that'll get even reluctant readers engrossed... and grossed. To those schools who already assign this book for Summer Reading I commend you. To those schools who do not, I would like to point out that "How To Eat Fried Worms" was originally published in 1973. What on earth are you waiting for?
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17 of 18 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars How to Eat Fried Worms, May 8, 2000
By A Customer
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
This book was a delightful read, even for someone who is 36 years old. It tells the tale of a group of boys who make a bet that one of them is to eat 15 worms in 15 days.
Although this book has been banned in schools in some states, I think it is a must read for elementary school children (2nd-4th or 5th grades) because the main point of the book is peer pressure. After I read it, I would like my kids to read it, then discuss peer pressure they may be getting now, as well as what they will face in the future. As a parent, highly recommended!
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9 of 10 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars DANiELLE'S REViEW, April 3, 2006
A Kid's Review
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
How To Eat Fried Worms?! Ewww!! Doesn't that sound disgusting! This was a great book that was very interseting and humorous. This book is about a boy who is dared to eat worms for a certain amount of money. Some of his friends who dared him to eat the worms took him to a carnival and tried to brain-wash him. If they got him to forget about the worms before 12'o clockhe would have to pay his friends money for not doing it. the boy comes home and his mom wakes him up and says ''Dont you have to eat two worms?'' The boy autimatIcally ran down into the back yard and ate two worms before 12'o clock. So the story goes on very adventureous. I reccomend this book because it is fun, exciting,mysterious, and awesome! That is why you should read this book.
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6 of 6 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars Growing up on Fried worms, April 24, 2006
Of all the books I have read in school (required and for pleasure) the one book that I remember reading and consider to be trademark of my youth was How to Eat Fried Worms.

Now as a teacher I enjoy sharing this wonderful book with my students! After all the boring stories we have to read, this one always get several laughs and a few ewwws but always a big hit.
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4 of 4 people found the following review helpful
5.0 out of 5 stars What I Think of "How To Eat Fried Worms", April 29, 2007
A Kid's Review
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
I recently read the book "How To Eat Fried Worms." It was hilarious, interesting, and gross - all at the same time! I highly recommend it to children (especially boys) who are in second or third grade. The story is about a boy named Billy Forrester who accepted a bet with his friends, Alan Phelps and Joseph O' Hara. The bet was that Billy had to eat fifteen worms in fifteen days or he would have to pay them $50.00. Alan and Joe provided the worms. Billy ate them boiled, raw, and fried.

I think the characters and the whole story were very believable. It is very possible for four boys to have a bet about eating fifteen worms in fifteen days. I really loved the way the story ended! I was very relieved.

My favorite part was when Billy and Tom fantasized about what they would do if they had a minibike and the opportunity to do crazy and unrealistic tricks with it. Another part I liked was when Tom and his friend made up a rhyme together.

Personally, I thought that "How to Eat Fried Worms" was very simple to read. Well, to compare, I am reading "Harry Potter and The Order of the Phoenix" right now in 3rd grade, and I think that book is easy. I think many readers would enjoy "How to Eat Fried Worms." Also, the author, Thomas Rockwell, is very talented and uses good detail in the right places.

If you want to, you can go to your local bookstore or library and get "How to Eat Fried Worms." They also made a movie based on the book, but the story is very different. For instance, one character's name is "Tom" in the book and "Adam" in the movie. Another change is that, in the movie, the bet was very different from the one in the book. He still had to eat worms, but a smaller amount and over a shorter period of time.

If I were you, I would get the book. All I am saying is that this is an interesting and fun book and will bring you and your family lots of laughs.
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10 of 13 people found the following review helpful
3.0 out of 5 stars Not bad but not necessarily a personal favorite either, November 17, 2005
I remember being intrigued by the title of this book as a child. Was this book REALLY about eating fried worms? If so, YUCK!

Needless to say, after reading the book, it really IS about eating fried worms. Billy is challenged to eat fifteen worms in fifteen days, with the strict rule being that he could only eat one per day and could not skip a day. His reward if he completes the challenge? Fifty dollars to buy a beautiful brand new mini-bike! The first day, when push came to shove, Billy was truly disgusted at having to eat the worm. Over the next few days, he gets rather creative with how the worms are prepared. Somehow eating a worm that has been breaded and fried seems a bit easier to take, it seems. When the fifteenth day is drawing near, his friends start to worry that they will have to part with the fifty dollars and try to sabotage his ability to stick to the challenge, often with pretty funny results. Does Billy end up completing the challenge though? Or can his friends outwit him?

So finally I read this book recently and must admit that I was a tad disappointed after being so enticed by the title. First of all, each chapter is the length of two facing pages. I personally found that this made the storyline more choppy and awkward this way. Admittedly, I had a difficult time following the story at times. I can't put my finger on why, but there was just *something* about how the book was written. I did find it very distracting that he used words like "goin'", "doin'", (for example) instead of "going" and "doing". I understand that this is supposed to accurately portray how the kids in this story really talk, but there was something about reading it on paper that wasn't pleasant for me. Also, I have never really considered myself an overly "girly girl" or anything, but I found this book to be very boyish! Not that there's anything wrong with that! Hehe. However, I did not deduct stars because of this minor issue that I had.

Boy, don't I sound negative! I really did not mind the book as much as it sounds. The creative ways in which Billy tried to prepare the worms to eat was amusing and the general idea of this book was a cute one. However, as I always say, to each his own! I am delighted to see that so many people love this book, but I respectfully state that it wasn't one of my favorites!
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How to eat fried worms review., January 1, 2007
A Kid's Review
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
The book How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell I thought was a good book because the main character in the story Billy is a lot like me. In this book Billy's friend Alan bet Billy that he couldn't eat 15 worms in 15 days. If he did Alan would pay Billy fifty dollars. Billy was eager to win the bet because he was trying to save up to buy a mini bike. Over the fifteen days Alan and Billy go to a barn where these two 12 year old boys along with two other friends have to watch Billy eat all the worms. In the barn Billy eats worms that are covered with ketchup, salt and pepper, mayo, horseradish, mustard, fried and many other ways. Each day he tries a worm a different way. In the end filled with a lot of hard work and determination Billy ate all the worms and got his money to buy his mini bike. I really liked this book because it was filled with lots of humorous situations that really made you laugh as well as say yuck!! I hope you find this book as good as I did.
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars How To Eat Fried Worms, April 10, 2001
A Kid's Review
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
I really like this book because it gave a great perspective of how the characters all thought. The dialog was also another thing why I liked it. The dialog was very detailed. And then there was the great plot which was just so fun to read about.
I think that the best part in this book was all of the parts when the main characters (which were the boys) were always talking about how it feels to eat a plump, juicy, muddy, sqiushy, and slimy worm. I love that kind of detail.
I think that one very important story element is the way that the chararcters interacted with eachother. I could see that, because there was a whole lot of text! I think that the other important story element is the theme: Anything tastes good with catchup or mustard! (that's what I think it is!)
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars A wormy book!, March 3, 2005
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
Ever wonder what worms taste like? If you have wondered, then you might want to read How to Eat Fried Worms. It is a really interesting book. Once you start reading it, you can't put it down. The book is about a boy named Billy, who is the main character. Billy was dared by his friend Alan to eat 15 worms in 15 days. If Billy ate all the worms, then he would get $50 from Alan. The night after ate the 10th worm, Alan worries because he doesn't have all the money to pay Billy. So he tries to trick him. To find out how, read the book! --Alejandra Leal, Quirshantee Collins, Angel Duarte and Janelly Reyes in Ms. Marik's 6th grade class
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3 of 3 people found the following review helpful
4.0 out of 5 stars how to eat fried worms doesn't suck, October 11, 2000
A Kid's Review
This review is from: How to Eat Fried Worms (Paperback)
How to eat fried worms doesn't suck it's an exciting book it has suspense the reason I got this book was because I needed to do a book report I saw it was short and simple so I got it.Boy was it better than I thought. I think this book does need to be read.My congradulations to the author for making a succeful book.
Oh and the video is great not as good as the book but hey get this book now
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How to Eat Fried Worms
How to Eat Fried Worms by Thomas Rockwell (Paperback - July 11, 2006)
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