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The Very Hungry Caterpillar Board Book and Plush (Book&Toy) Hardcover – August 30, 2002

4.8 out of 5 stars 68 customer reviews

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Editorial Reviews

About the Author

Eric Carle is acclaimed and beloved as the creator of brilliantly illustrated and innovatively designed picture books for very young children. His best-known work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, has eaten its way into the hearts of literally millions of children all over the world and has been translated into more than 25 languages and sold over twelve million copies. Since the Caterpillar was published in 1969, Eric Carle has illustrated more than sixty books, many best sellers, most of which he also wrote.

Born in Syracuse, New York, in 1929, Eric Carle moved with his parents to Germany when he was six years old; he was educated there, and graduated from the prestigious art school, the Akademie der bildenden Kunste, in Stuttgart. But his dream was always to return to America, the land of his happiest childhood memories. So, in 1952, with a fine portfolio in hand and forty dollars in his pocket, he arrived in New York. Soon he found a job as a graphic designer in the promotion department of The New York Times. Later, he was the art director of an advertising agency for many years.

One day, respected educator and author, Bill Martin Jr, called to ask Carle to illustrate a story he had written. Martin's eye had been caught by a striking picture of a red lobster that Carle had created for an advertisement. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was the result of their collaboration. It is still a favorite with children everywhere. This was the beginning of Eric Carle's true career. Soon Carle was writing his own stories, too. His first wholly original book was 1,2,3 to the Zoo, followed soon afterward by the celebrated classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Eric Carle's art is distinctive and instantly recognizable. His art work is created in collage technique, using hand-painted papers, which he cuts and layers to form bright and cheerful images. Many of his books have an added dimension - die-cut pages, twinkling lights as in The Very Lonely Firefly, even the lifelike sound of a cricket's song as in The Very Quiet Cricket - giving them a playful quality: a toy that can be read, a book that can be touched. Children also enjoy working in collage and many send him pictures they have made themselves, inspired by his illustrations. He receives hundreds of letters each week from his young admirers. The secret of Eric Carle's books' appeal lies in his intuitive understanding of and respect for children, who sense in him instinctively someone who shares their most cherished thoughts and emotions.

The themes of his stories are usually drawn from his extensive knowledge and love of nature - an interest shared by most small children. Besides being beautiful and entertaining, his books always offer the child the opportunity to learn something about the world around them. It is his concern for children, for their feelings and their inquisitiveness, for their creativity and their intellectual growth that, in addition to his beautiful artwork, makes the reading of his books such a stimulating and lasting experience.

Carle says: "With many of my books I attempt to bridge the gap between the home and school. To me home represents, or should represent; warmth, security, toys, holding hands, being held. School is a strange and new place for a child. Will it be a happy place? There are new people, a teacher, classmates - will they be friendly? I believe the passage from home to school is the second biggest trauma of childhood; the first is, of course, being born. Indeed, in both cases we leave a place of warmth and protection for one that is unknown. The unknown often brings fear with it. In my books I try to counteract this fear, to replace it with a positive message. I believe that children are naturally creative and eager to learn. I want to show them that learning is really both fascinating and fun."

Eric Carle has two grown-up children, a son and a daughter. With his wife Barbara, he lives in Northampton, Massachusetts. The Carles spend their summers in the nearby Berkshire hills.

copyright © 2000 by Penguin Group (USA) Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.
Eric Carle is acclaimed and beloved as the creator of brilliantly illustrated and innovatively designed picture books for very young children. His best-known work, The Very Hungry Caterpillar, has eaten its way into the hearts of literally millions of children all over the world and has been translated into more than 25 languages and sold over twelve million copies. Since the Caterpillar was published in 1969, Eric Carle has illustrated more than sixty books, many best sellers, most of which he also wrote.

Born in Syracuse, New York, in 1929, Eric Carle moved with his parents to Germany when he was six years old; he was educated there, and graduated from the prestigious art school, the Akademie der bildenden Kunste, in Stuttgart. But his dream was always to return to America, the land of his happiest childhood memories. So, in 1952, with a fine portfolio in hand and forty dollars in his pocket, he arrived in New York. Soon he found a job as a graphic designer in the promotion department of The New York Times. Later, he was the art director of an advertising agency for many years.

One day, respected educator and author, Bill Martin Jr, called to ask Carle to illustrate a story he had written. Martin's eye had been caught by a striking picture of a red lobster that Carle had created for an advertisement. Brown Bear, Brown Bear, What Do You See? was the result of their collaboration. It is still a favorite with children everywhere. This was the beginning of Eric Carle's true career. Soon Carle was writing his own stories, too. His first wholly original book was 1,2,3 to the Zoo, followed soon afterward by the celebrated classic, The Very Hungry Caterpillar.

Eric Carle's art is distinctive and instantly recognizable. His art work is created in collage technique, using hand-painted papers, which he cuts and layers to form bright and cheerful images. Many of his books have an added dimension - die-cut pages, twinkling lights as in The Very Lonely Firefly, even the lifelike sound of a cricket's song as in The Very Quiet Cricket - giving them a playful quality: a toy that can be read, a book that can be touched. Children also enjoy working in collage and many send him pictures they have made themselves, inspired by his illustrations. He receives hundreds of letters each week from his young admirers. The secret of Eric Carle's books' appeal lies in his intuitive understanding of and respect for children, who sense in him instinctively someone who shares their most cherished thoughts and emotions.

The themes of his stories are usually drawn from his extensive knowledge and love of nature - an interest shared by most small children. Besides being beautiful and entertaining, his books always offer the child the opportunity to learn something about the world around them. It is his concern for children, for their feelings and their inquisitiveness, for their creativity and their intellectual growth that, in addition to his beautiful artwork, makes the reading of his books such a stimulating and lasting experience.

Carle says: "With many of my books I attempt to bridge the gap between the home and school. To me home represents, or should represent; warmth, security, toys, holding hands, being held. School is a strange and new place for a child. Will it be a happy place? There are new people, a teacher, classmates - will they be friendly? I believe the passage from home to school is the second biggest trauma of childhood; the first is, of course, being born. Indeed, in both cases we leave a place of warmth and protection for one that is unknown. The unknown often brings fear with it. In my books I try to counteract this fear, to replace it with a positive message. I believe that children are naturally creative and eager to learn. I want to show them that learning is really both fascinating and fun."

copyright © 2000 by Penguin Group (USA) Books for Young Readers. All rights reserved.

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Product Details

  • Series: Book&Toy
  • Hardcover: 24 pages
  • Publisher: Philomel Books (August 30, 2002)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0399242058
  • ISBN-13: 978-0399242052
  • Product Dimensions: 5.2 x 3.2 x 7.4 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 10.4 ounces (View shipping rates and policies)
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (68 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #14,096 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

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Customer Reviews

Top Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
Story Synopsis:
- A caterpillar eats his way through different foods until he is full and weaves a cocoon transforming into a beautiful butterfly. Charming colorful illustrations of foods along with the fat caterpillar and catchy little holes in the foods where the caterpillar "had his snack" make this book a hit with young children.
Review:
- Eric Carle's classic, "The Very Hungry Caterpillar" has charmed millions over the years with it's simple memorable story, striking illustrations and the gimmicky holes on each of its' pages. To date, more than 12 million copies of this book have been sold in its original, full-sized edition, and mini editions. This beloved tale of science and gluttony has also been translated into 20 languages and counting. Die-cut pages (each page has a hole where the "caterpillar" ate through the food item) illustrate what the caterpillar ate on successive days. Strikingly bold, colorful pictures and a simple text in large, clear type tell the story of a hungry little caterpillar's culinary progress through an amazing variety and quantity of foods. Full at last, he weaves a cocoon around himself and goes to sleep, to emerge a few weeks later as a wonderfully transformed and beautiful butterfly! The final, double-page picture of the butterfly is a joyous explosion of color, a vibrant affirmation of the wonder and beauty of Nature. This story is a hit every time. Carle's bright colors and clever die-cut artwork never cease to entertain even the youngest child, and there is surely nothing in nature closer to magic than the emergence of a butterfly. This is a beautiful, educational and fun book.
Literary Features For Young Readers:
- Simple words appropriate to pre-readers, younger children and ELLs (English Language Learners).
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Format: Hardcover
For my grandson's first birthday, I wanted a gift that would please him visually and stimulate him mentally. A friend suggested this book because her son had enjoyed it many years ago. Feedback from my grandson, through his parents, is that he enjoys the book very much, and the toy is nice but not as captivating as listening to someone reading the book. Thanks for a very good purchase.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is packaged very nicely for gift giving and is an adorable set. My child is very into the very hungry caterpillar at the moment. However, I was less than impressed with the stuffed animal. It is small and stiff and doesn't bend. It's just not huggable, therefore, in my house, it gets left on the playroom floor, never to be touched again.There are options out there that are filled with beans and are larger in size. I wish I had spent a bit more and gotten one of those and the book separately. Still a wonderful book and well made toy so I still gave it 4 stars.
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By L on June 2, 2012
Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
I purchased this book for my son and he loves it. He loves putting his fingers over the holes on each side. I like the little flaps used in the middle of the book where the caterpillar eats through the different things. My son loves flipping through it. The plush is cute and I chose to purchase the book with plush so my son can make a text to real life connection with the plush. He can recognize the caterpillar plush from the book.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
Adorable book and cute little caterpillar toy. Possibly a bit over-priced for such a tiny little toy but I'd purchase it again in a flash....it's that cute. Additionally, on amazon you can get this little baby bottle cover that looks a lot like the hungry, hungry, caterpillar DAYAN Baby Bottle Cover Toddler Baby Feeder Holder Colorful Caterpillar
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
This is one of our favourite books, both of our kids enjoyed it more than 30 years ago and it's still as fresh today. The board book version was perfect for an almost one year old and will keep him amused for a long time. The addition of the little stuffed caterpillar is wonderful.
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Format: Hardcover Verified Purchase
We bought this set for our first child's first Christmas. The book is a classic that us parents grew up with and we wanted to share it with our children. The plush was just bonus. It's so cute, and totally worth it if you are an Eric Carle fan in general (which we are). I'm so glad I have this cute caterpillar in the kids' stuffed animal collection.
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Format: Hardcover
This classic favorite captures the interest of children because the caterpillar "eats" its way through the pages of the book. There are actual holes in the pages. My 3-yr old niece loved the book and when she got her own copy she was thrilled. But the plush caterpillar made it even more special. Both the book and the toy never leave her side.
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