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Thomas the Toadilly Terrible Bully

Overview

Thomas hates being ignored. But when his attempts to impress everyone don't make him any friends, he decides to be a bully instead. There's just one problem: he makes a terrible bully. A toadilly terrible one, in fact.

It turns out, though, that there's an even bigger bully around, and Thomas discovers what it feels like to be the one bullied. But a bit of teamwork helps him outwit the bully and make a new friend. And being a friend, Thomas ...

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Overview

Thomas hates being ignored. But when his attempts to impress everyone don't make him any friends, he decides to be a bully instead. There's just one problem: he makes a terrible bully. A toadilly terrible one, in fact.

It turns out, though, that there's an even bigger bully around, and Thomas discovers what it feels like to be the one bullied. But a bit of teamwork helps him outwit the bully and make a new friend. And being a friend, Thomas finds, is far more fun than being a bully.

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Editorial Reviews

Children's Literature - Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz
Thomas, a well-dressed toad, is new in town. When he tries to impress them, the other toads ignore him. So he decides to be a bully. But he is a failure as a bully. He hates being ignored, but no matter how hard he tries, he just cannot “pull it off.” Then he spies little Gomer, and he thinks he has managed to make him cry, only to see that there is a huge, mean bully menacing them both. In the confrontation, clever Thomas tricks the bully. He then discovers that although he is a “toadilly terrible bully,” for Gomer he is a “toadilly terrific friend.” The comic, anthropomorphic characters are created with acrylics on gessoed paper with crackled texture. The emphasis is on the characters rather than the background or setting, on framed, chiefly double pages. The lesson of the story is clear. Reviewer: Ken Marantz and Sylvia Marantz; Ages 4 to 8.
School Library Journal
02/01/2014
K-Gr 2—Thomas is new in town, and he tries hard to make new friends. Really hard. He struts his stuff in fancy clothes, and is determined to be the center of attention. Unfortunately, the other toads just ignore him. He hates being ignored, so he decides he'll be a bully instead. Alas, he's not a particularly good one. With his weak voice and flabby abs, he scares no one. Practicing scary faces and telling mean jokes doesn't help much either. Then he meets Gomer, a nerdy-looking toad with large, round glasses. Thomas's tactics make Gomer cry, or so it seems. However, there's a bigger, "baddest-to-the-bone" bully lurking behind Gomer, and he has been after Gomer all day long. Now, the bully has two victims, and Thomas must think fast to save them both. In the end, he learns that he may not be a very effective bad guy, but he is a pretty good friend. The illustrations are done with acrylics on paper prepared with Gesso. This method provides a cracklelike background for the artwork, which is rendered in earth tones of orange, brown, red, and green. This picture book is suitable for an introductory lesson on relationships or against bullying. A satisfactory work but not "toadilly" a knockout.—Roxanne Burg, Orange County Public Library, CA
Kirkus Reviews
2013-12-01
The serious topic of bullying gets a light treatment in this tale of limited social skills and accidental friendship. The brisk introduction of Thomas, a newcomer to town, may leave readers, like his new acquaintances, cold. Cocky, pushy and clearly impatient, Thomas quickly decides that if his first approach doesn't work, he'll "be a bully instead." Unfortunately, he's just not cut out for the role. In what feels like an almost obligatory humorous pose, Thomas is shown peering into a mirror wearing only his tighty whities and bemoaning his flabby abs. Frustrated and determined, Thomas waits for someone truly puny to pick on only to discover that another, much bigger bully has gotten there first. Put into the position of defending young Gomer (and himself), Thomas thinks fast and deflects the danger. Paintings in acrylics on gessoed paper have a pleasingly textural look, well-suited to the warty characters and woodland setting. Bright pops of blue, purple and red contrast with the mossy greens and browns that dominate many of the illustrations. The appearance of a bug-eyed fly throughout provides additional interest. Unfortunately, none of this quite manages to compensate for the slim storyline and pat resolution. Like Thomas himself, Levy seems intent on sabotaging her own effort to connect and find a warm welcome. (Picture book. 4-7)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780802853738
  • Publisher: Eerdmans, William B. Publishing Company
  • Publication date: 2/5/2014
  • Pages: 34
  • Sales rank: 1,410,117
  • Age range: 4 - 8 Years
  • Lexile: AD240L (what's this?)
  • Product dimensions: 9.10 (w) x 9.80 (h) x 0.30 (d)

Meet the Author

Janice Levy is the author of Gonzalo Grabs the Good Life (Eerdmans), I Remember Abuelito (Albert Whitman), Alley Oops (Flashlight), and Runaway Radish (Raven Tree). She lives in New York and teaches writing at Hofstra University. Visit her website at www.janicelevy.com.

Bill Slavin and Esperan�a Melo have illustrated a number of children's titles separately. Additionally, they have collaborated on The Seven Seas (Eerdmans) and Drumheller Dinosaur Dance (Kids Can Press). Bill and Esperan�a live in Ontario. Visit their websites at www.billslavin.com and www.esperancamelo.blogspot.com.

Bill Slavin and Esperan�a Melo have illustrated a number of children's titles separately. Additionally, they have collaborated on The Seven Seas (Eerdmans) and Drumheller Dinosaur Dance (Kids Can Press). Bill and Esperan�a live in Ontario. Visit their websites at www.billslavin.com and www.esperancamelo.blogspot.com.

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